Oyster Sauce Beef at Bruce Lee’s Favorite Restaurant — Cooking in America

Oyster Sauce Beef at Bruce Lee’s Favorite Restaurant — Cooking in America

– Hi Sheldon. – Hey! – Welcome here. – I’m excited to get warmed up with some Chinese food. – You’re at the right place to come then. – I heard that Tai Tung is the oldest Chinese restaurant here in Seattle. – Yeah we are. Since 1935. – Yeah.
– 82 years now. (electronic music) – The international district in Seattle started off as the city’s
Chinatown in the 1800s. Harry Chan is a third generation owner of this iconic Seattle
culinary institution. What dish are we gonna be cooking first? – We are gonna cook Bruce
Lee’s favorite dishes. – Okay.
– Oyster sauce beef. – [Sheldon] So we use flank– – [Harry] Yeah, we use a flank steak. – Whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa. (electronic pop music) This cutting board is amazing. Pure wood, I can see that
it’s been used for many years. – [Harry] Oh yeah… (laughing) We have been here a long time.
– Yeah. – We use that every day. We marinate the beef… – [Sheldon] Salt, little bit of magic… (laughing) – [Harry] White pepper, sesame seed oil, little bit baking soda. – And then a little bit of corn starch, little bit of margarita mix– – There we go. (laughing) – Showing me the secrets, huh? – Oh yeah. (laughing) – [Sheldon] And that goes
right into the flank steak. (sizzling) – Hey, you’re doing good Sheldon. – All right. (laughing) (electronic pop music) – Hey, that looks beautiful! Wow. (clapping) High five! All right, yeah. – Is it good? (laughing) I got approval from the team. Whew.
(laughing) That was one of my best
experiences right there, serious. Everyone’s been working here a long time. – Oh yeah, how long you been work here? – 38.
– 38 years. – 38 years.
– Yep. – 12 years.
– 12 years. – Huh? – 32.
– 32 years. – 32 years? (laughing) Good boss? – Yeah, good boss. – Yeah! – [Harry] That’s why one thing
good about our dishes here. It’s consistency. (pop music) – [Sheldon] Chop suey, egg foo young… – A squid Chinese style, that’s Chinese broccoli with oyster sauce. (pop music) Bruce Lee, when he was in Seattle, this corner, the corner
table he always liked to sit. – Well I am honored.
(laughing) Hopefully I get some of those moves after I finish up some of these dishes. (pop music) – Hey. – You’re here usually every single day. – Every day. (laughing) You know, I like what I’m doing and my hobby is working. – [Sheldon] Oh yeah! – When it’s snowing out
there, sleeping bag, I will be here. – So you sleep here? – I sleep here. Because I want to make
sure the door’s open. – Tell me about this, where the restaurant is
located in this district. – We are located in Chinatown. Early 30s that’s when we first opened. They used to have a lot
of Chinese community. Because the people,
they come here to work. And most of them are men and single so they live here and they
eat here and they work here. – You’ve never laid off an employee here? – No, we never lay off people.
– Yeah. – That’s why we may have
an employee work here more than 50 years. Some of them, later on, to
open their own business, open their own restaurant, you know? – Chinese restaurant
classic, always to have this. The chop suey, oyster sauce beef, so simple yet so, so delicious. Your grandfather came here from– – South China. He’s called Canton. – How did he come to Seattle? – That time is hard to find work in China. So he come over America. After the gold rush, he
have to look for a job so he started in 1935. Then later on my father and my brother they came over from China. Yeah, I came over here when I was 20. So I started with the dishwashers. That work, you know how
hard to peel the pea pod? (laughing)
One by one – wow! You gotta know the whole kitchen. Now I have my nephew, also
helping out the restaurant. My grandson he start working
at the restaurant now. Fifth generation working here. – Here in Tai Tung, that is… That is a testament to
your family right there. – Yeah. – Did Bruce Lee live in Seattle? – Yes.
– Okay. – Back in the early 60s. And he go to school here, you know, hung around within Chinatown. – Yeah.
– One of my friends who had been
work in the kitchen before– – Mhmm. – And he was a roommate with
Bruce Lee for two years. – What kind of person was Bruce Lee? – Well, don’t make him mad! (laughing) Otherwise you’d get in trouble. – Get the food on the table, quick! – Ha, yep. All the waiters, they know–
– They know. – What he want. So all he do, he come in, he sit here, and then they keep him with a tea, water, and a bowl of soup, you know? And then oyster sauce if he likes it. And of course they give him a bill. Make sure he pay. (laughing) – So you came here when
you was just 22 years. Tell me how the city has
changed from back then to now. – Seattle used to be a quiet city. The last five, 10 years,
Seattle is growing a lot. But one thing, Tai Tung never change. We’re still at the same location, same family operated, and same recipe from the beginning. – Where do you see the future of Tai Tung? – I have to take care of my employees. And I have to take care of the customer that they love the Tai Tung food. So I have a lot of customers tell me, “Don’t close it!” – Yeah. – You know and I said, don’t worry. – Don’t worry– – Don’t worry. – I will be here. As long as I’m here, the door is open. – Sheldon I hope you brought your knives. – I brought everything from my star chef. (laughing) – We’re cooking bo tai chanh, a cured beef salad… (fading rock music)

100 thoughts on “Oyster Sauce Beef at Bruce Lee’s Favorite Restaurant — Cooking in America

  1. I really appreciate the love he has for his profession. This humble, yet proud and impressive kind man. I wish the best of luck for him and his business!

  2. Eat here while you can. Seattle's Chinatown restaurants are seeing increased pressure from rising taxes, labor costs, and a crazy real estate market.

  3. A delicious break from the previous episodes on eater with those pompous, pretentious chefs. A chef with pure passion and uses simple ingredients to create this lovingly crafted food with generations of backing. Love this!!

  4. The guest chef is not stir frying the beef correctly. He is missing the "Wok Hay". It needs much higher heat and flash fry the beef to give it a slight char but still a bit undercooked on the inside. It also needs a bit of dark soy sauce. I don't recall he added oyster sauce.

  5. This is probably where Bruce took Linda after the White restaurant waiter didn't give them a seat in Dragon: A Bruce Lee Story lol

  6. Howzit Sheldon good to see you again, you must be very busy haven't seen a new vid. from you in a while. But it's all good, how was ur christmas and new year? Well great vid. and how was it to be sitting in my childhood action star? Aloha Sheldon from freezing cold Kansas 😉

  7. looks delicious! If you guys are interested in more homemade recipes, my channel is new and I think you're going to like it. Check me out, thanks!

  8. When I visit Seattle I'm going here first to eat. Always support family owned small businesses this is what America is all about.

  9. There is a huge difference between American chinese food and contemporary real Chinese food. The food is consider to be good in American standards. But chinese food in china has evolved too much from the 1930s.

  10. 20 dislikes!!?? Really, WTF people!?? Owner is the B-O-S-S!!! Has the back of his employees, dude's full of passion and the food looks like a fuckin million dollars. I'll love to try it!!

  11. What is chop suey or egg foo young? The hallmark of a tourist trap is the gelatinous sauce that comes with too much corn starch. This isn't real Chinese food.

  12. Back when this place was open 24 hours it was a favorite among us cab drivers. The last few times I have been here were very disappointing as everything seemed quite tasteless and rushed from day's when I would eat here 3-4 times a week.

  13. All of his workers are long time employees, I wonder if he has a son or daughter to continue his legacy. It would be such a shame to have no one to carry on the tradition

  14. There are wonderful family run restaurants in your neighborhood that make wonderful real home made food. Just find them. They'll always be wonderful.

  15. They make the BEST Egg Rolls IN THE WORLD!!! My wife and I have been dining here for over 20 years. One of my favorites in Seattle! Thanks Harry and crew!

  16. this is what blows me away. this restaurant has been there since the 30's, he is the third generation and yet he still has a super thick accent. how in the world does that happen?

  17. This place looks amazing.
    The owner actually cares about his food, you see that less and less these days.
    Simply amazing.
    He should move to Australia and open up a place in my area, I'd visit every other day xD

  18. Hold on just a second. How is the guy the third generation owner of a restaurant in the United States and yet he clearly has a Chinese accent? Is he just "doing the accent" for the video?! LOL

  19. Youve got a great show man, you seem so genuine and kind. Thank you for the videos. I wish you many subscribers!

  20. This place is really amazing. My wife and I stayed in the International District where this restaurant was about 3 or 4 blocks from us. Great food!

  21. Tai Tung is one of the legendary restaurants in the ID. 2 of them have permanently closed now: Sea Garden and Phnom Penh Noodle House. It's sad but Tai Tung is the last remaining. Tai Tung is an absolute Chinese Restaurant icon in Seattle.

  22. I came here after helping a friend with her martial arts class for lunch today for the first time in the 12 years I moved here. I saw the owner wearing that same shirt. This is going to be my new secret spot for lunch. Maybe I have guts to order Bruce Lee favorite dish next time….

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