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China Live

4.6
1940 Reviews
$30 and under
Chinese
China Live, Eater's "Restaurant of the Year," features fresh, seasonal Chinese cuisine cooked from specialized stations that merge traditional Chinese and Western culinary equipment. Our main dining area, with views of our exhibition kitchens, plays centerpiece, appointed with chairs and tables all handcrafted in China from reclaimed Chinese elm. We also offer outside dining.

Safety precautions

Cleaning & Sanitizing
  • Surfaces sanitized between seatings
  • Common areas deep cleaned daily
  • Digital, disposable or sanitized menu provided
  • Sanitizer or wipes provided for customers
  • Contactless payment available
  • Sealed or wrapped utensils used
Physical Distancing
  • Limited number of seated diners
  • Distancing maintained in common areas
  • Extra space between tables
Protective Equipment
  • Waitstaff wear masks
  • Diners must wear masks unless eating or drinking
Screening
  • Sick staff prohibited in the workplace
  • Staff temperature check required
  • Diner temperature check required
  • Proof of vaccination required to dine indoors

Offers

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Sun - Wed 5:00PM - 5:00PM 8:30PM - 8:30PM 9:00PM - 9:00PM
Thu 8:30PM - 8:30PM
Fri 9:00PM - 9:00PM

What 1940 people are saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.6based on recent ratings
4.6
food
4.5
service
4.5
ambience
4.1
value
Noise · Moderate
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VK
VjdndndKK
1 review
Dined a day ago
Overall2food1service5ambience3

Excellent service from start to finish from all members of the team however the food isn’t traditional Chinese food and everything is severely overpriced. The noodles are salty to a point where it was inedible and had to be tossed later. For $123 for a few dishes, I don’t think we’ll be back.

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
Los Angeles
5 reviews
Dined 3 days ago
Overall4food4service4ambience3

So yummy!! The food came quick and hot!

MA
MarciA
San Francisco
8 reviews
Dined 4 days ago
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Lively and fun, it was great experiencing the unique cocktails and different dishes. Service was fantastic as well.

HD
HappyDinner
San Diego
1 review
Dined on January 9, 2022
Overall5food5service4ambience5

Great! Had a bit of pause between dishes tho. Overall super tasty

SM
vipShawnM
San Francisco
12 reviews
Dined on January 8, 2022
Overall4food4service4ambience5

Great experience overall for our family

L
Lacorncorn
1 review
Dined on January 8, 2022
Overall3food1service3ambience3

The food is way too salty. And not much service. Would not go back anymore.

OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined on January 8, 2022
Overall3food3service1ambience5

The service was very poor. Zero attention from the attendants

j
johns
Grand Rapids
1 review
Dined on January 7, 2022
Overall5food5service5ambience5

My Dad always told me “If you pay for the best, you rarely will be disappointed”. He was certainly talking about this place. Even at about $100 per including tip, I still give China Live 5 stars for value. At least 5 of the 10 dishes we sampled were the best I ever had. Mapo Tofu was incredible— brought the heat but with a ton of flavor. Kung Pao Chicken had green peppers like I have only tasted in China. Our waiter Michael was great— encouraging some menu choices but not at all pushy about it. The Peking Duck he recommended was better than what I have had in Beijing. Good energy and lively atmosphere.

OT
OpenTable Diner
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on January 4, 2022
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Amazing food experience

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on December 31, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great ambiance, service, and food. Always an excellent experience!

OT
OpenTable Diner
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on December 31, 2021
Overall3food4service3ambience4

Service was subpar. Food was overpriced for basic items.

JB
JackB
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on December 31, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Great food, great service. A winner. Would definitely recommend to friends

BH
BethH
1 review
Dined on December 30, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Our server was so friendly and sweet. The food is amazing, too!

P
Preshus
Charlotte
2 reviews
Dined on December 29, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

First time at China Live here. Awesome experience! Looked a little sketchy at the street walkup to the check in podium and then led into the first door.... then the second door by our hostess. Upon entry to the actual facility, we were impressed. Plenty of space with tables and bar. Dining area partially adjacent to store area. The crab and shrimp handrolls are small, but you want them that way, and they are phenomenal! Entree's- Kung Pao Firecracker Chicken + Sea Scallops with Chinese Black Bean in Rice Wine Sauce. Great service and atmosphere. You will LOVE this place. Enjoy!

OT
OpenTable Diner
San Francisco
10 reviews
Dined on December 29, 2021
Overall3food3service3ambience3

They give 90 minutes to eat. But taking out the main dish is very slow.

DR
DarrinR
1 review
Dined on December 28, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Amazing service!!!
Amazing food!!!
Best Dim Sum in CA.
From LA and this is one of our top 2 restaurants in SF.

T
Tweetyagb
Central Coast
2 reviews
Dined on December 28, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Food, service and promptness was excellent.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Chicago
1 review
Dined on December 27, 2021
Overall2food5service4ambience4

The food was great, as always.
Only two stars overall because with a reservation, our wait to be seated was over 30 minutes. It is understood that restaurants can be short staffed, it would have been good to have been offered free drinks or a dessert for the wait.

AM
AmitM
Seattle
6 reviews
Dined on December 26, 2021
Overall4food5service5ambience4

The food and service was incredible. Definitely worth a visit.

d
dlcalvi
San Francisco
17 reviews
Dined on December 24, 2021
Overall3food5service3ambience5

We dined here on Christmas eve. They were extremely busy. We ordered a couple of cocktails then placed our food order several minuets latter. To our surprise the food was all brought to our table almost immediately while we had to wait some time for our cocktails to arrive. We felt rushed but the food was extremely good and the atmosphere & decor are wonderful.

MD
MDLC
San Francisco
4 reviews
Dined on December 22, 2021
Overall3food3service3ambience4

Crab and shrimp hand roll, shumai, short ribs and Shanghai chow mei are well done. Xiao long BAO was not as flavorful and full of soup as one would expect when compared to equivalently price offerings at other restaurants. The modern ambiance is really nice.

KV
KevinV
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on December 21, 2021
Overall5food5service4ambience5

Excellent food.

PR
PumpRoom
Chicago
1 review
Dined on December 19, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Absolutely brilliant. GM the food; the service, the ambience

BT
vipBayT
New England
5 reviews
Dined on December 19, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

One of my favorite places in SF! Must-try if you are visiting the area :)

LM
vipLindaM
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on December 18, 2021
Overall5food3service5ambience5

We took our family of 11, on a busy Saturday Holiday night, which included our 4 grandchildren. Michelle, the manager, was very accommodating in booking a large party. We did not find this with other restaurants in SF. Our server was outstanding, giving us time to enjoy our meal, not rushing us, and was attentive to the needs of our 2- 10 year-olds. We sat in the retail area, and at first I was not pleased but it turned our wonderfully. The food was good, the quantities fair and we had a lot of fun. Thank you to China Live and the entire staff.

OR
OccamsRazor
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on December 17, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great food, good service. Amazingly I was able to get a table (outdoor dining only) on short notice on a Friday night. Probably just luck, this place is obviously popular. Quality was high all around. Good date-night place.

OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined on December 16, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Had a solid meal here - excellent peking duck & dim sum, fun location in Chinatown, and there’s a great hole in the wall karaoke bar around the corner to go to before or after your meal. Fun place to have a business meal where you don’t actually do business.

TF
vipTomF
Chicago
30 reviews
Dined on December 15, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Unbelievable everything. Amazing food and service and the vibe is energetic

AS
sfAnderSmith
New York Area
12 reviews
Dined on December 15, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We had a lovely dinner for our company holiday celebration. The team were very accommodating in moving us from an outside table to an inside table. The service was great. The food was amazing. No one had been to the restaurant previously and everyone loved it. I appreciated the thoughtful recommendations from the service team and the attentive but not over bearing service.

I will definitely be having the spicy impossible dumplings again.

1
vip1dinerdeluxe
San Francisco
34 reviews
Dined on December 12, 2021
Overall5food4service5ambience5

Second time here in the last couple of months and once again got was very good. Vegetarian menu has expanded from when they first opened which was terrific for our table of 4 vegetarians. This time what was more notable was the service was not only attentive but very friendly making for an enjoyable evening. Food was very good but if I had one nit to pick about it I thought the vegetarian pot stickers were just a bit better when they first opened. They are still huge but are thicker now and used to be longer with a crispier outside.

They now add a 20% service charge to the bill and I am not sure they advertise it. The bar guys told us but the waiter neglected to and I was about to give a 20% tip when I fortunately noticed it was included. All in all a very good experience and will be our go to place for higher end Chinese food.

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on December 10, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great table and quiet environment.

J
vipjisforJoe
Washington DC
44 reviews
Dined on December 8, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

One of the best spots in SF, consistently.

b
vipbridgetb
San Francisco
22 reviews
Dined on December 7, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

First time guests! We were the sassy sisters at the bar and let me tell you, I have found my new favorite restaurant in the city! Also, my sister tried soup dumplings for the first time and is now a fan! Thanks to the great bartender--you were awesome and I never would've guessed that you were new. you've created 2 new fans!

B
Brennan
1 review
Dined on December 6, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Awesome for birthday! Great dumplings, some of the best I've had in my life!

SY
ShariqY
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined on December 6, 2021
Overall2food1service1ambience5

Unfortunately last night was not up to the usual standard
The crushed cucumbers were too sweet, the Xiao Long Bao was too doughy and the Sichuan shrimp too tough , the service was the worst we have experienced in 5 years

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on December 5, 2021
Overall3food4service1ambience4

Food was good but service was just plain awful.

LE
vipLESLEY
West Palm Beach
40 reviews
Dined on December 5, 2021
Overall2food2service3ambience4

We had high hopes for China Live. The restaurant is well designed. There was more than adequate space between tables. The look is natural, light and airy.

With a vegetarian in our party we ordered veg dumplings. They were cold and bland. The Peking duck pockets were lukewarm but tasty. The scallops in black bean sauce were just OK. The Szechwan tofu was just fair. The best dish was the blistered broccoli.

There are many excellent Chinese restaurants in SF. We won’t be rushing back to China Live.

GS
vipGabrielS
San Francisco
9 reviews
Dined on December 4, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

I absolutely love this perfect restaurant.

l
llouis2000
San Francisco
44 reviews