The Mandarin House in La Jolla was started on April 21st, 1977 by Tat “John” Law and Wai “Bill” Man. It was the first of many restaurants for the two longtime friends and longtime cooks. Both John and Bill grew up in the kitchens of Hong Kong during the 60’s. They worked their way up from dish washers and delivery boys as teens to Head Chefs in very well respected Hong Kong restaurants by the time they were both in their early 20’s. While in their 20’s the two friends began to travel the world. They cooked their way from Hong Kong, to London, then to Maryland and finally landed in San Diego during the 70’s, all while bringing their exotic Sze-Chuan flavors and techniques with them.
In 1977, the two friends had the opportunity to transform a closing breakfast restaurant into their dream. An exotic Chinese restaurant of their own, Mandarin House La Jolla was born. The two chef’s created their own signature sauces and recipes by using their traditionally taught techniques. The restaurant was an instant hit in La Jolla and has been a La Jolla staple ever since. We have been serving the same classic tastes for over 35 years now.
A lot has happened and a lot has changed over the years. The two restaurateurs opened another Mandarin House in Banker’s Hill in 1979, and another in Pacific Beach in the 90’s, both of which were very successful but are now closed. Additionally, in the 90’s and 2000’s, Mandarin House had gone international and had opened two very successful Mandarin Houses in Mexico City, both of which are now also closed.
But in spite of all the change and all the time that has gone by, some things remain constant. The quality and taste of our food has not changed and has not suffered and still cannot be beat. We are still using the same recipes that we’ve been serving for over 35 years. Our world class chefs are still making our Dumplings & Egg Rolls, among other appetizers, by hand and they are arguably the best in town. Our famous Peking Duck is still freshly roasted and hand carved and served at your table. We are still your favorite spot for your first date, your birthday, holidays, or just dinner. We offer take out so you don’t have to cook after a long day, and delivery when there’s no place you’d rather be than home. So whatever the occasion, know that we are here to make it memorable by providing the best Chinese cuisine in town.
For those of you that have been loyal customers over the years, we thank you. For those of you that are thinking about trying us for the first time, we invite you to come in and experience what our Sze Chuan flavors are all about. You’re going to love it!
-Many thanks & much love,
The Mandarin House
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