Find out why China Live and Mister Jiu’s should be on your dining itinerary.

“In Chinatown, people shop the markets in the morning and cook those ingredients at home that night. Why can’t we do that with Chinese restaurants?” said George Chen, founder and executive chef of China Live. His Chinatown food hall opened on Broadway in early 2017, complete with a market-driven cafe, beverage bar, tea counter and culinary retail shop, plus an upstairs cocktail lounge and fine dining venue.

Chen and his wife, Cindy Wong-Chen, explored Asia in search of sustainable, humanely produced goods and equipment for the 30,000-square-foot, Eataly-inspired space. The ground-floor Market Restaurant and Bar Central seats diners at tables and chairs made from reclaimed Northern Chinese elm. Hand-painted blue and white tiles in the Oolong Cafe reflect a style of ceramics popular in 14th-century China. Illustrated posters and rice sacks gathered during the Chens’ travels adorn the walls.

From a bright chrysanthemum salad sprinkled with star fruit vinegar, to slow-simmered broth crafted in an imported ceramic cauldron, the menu spotlights what George Chen calls “traditional recipes with a San Francisco twist.”

“We change our menu daily, and we named this destination ‘China Live’ because we wanted to create a vibrant platform where people can try new things,” he said. “With San Francisco booming and Chinatown being right here in the heart of the city, the time was right for this project.”

THREE TO TRY AT CHINA LIVE

The China Live retail market carries sauces, spices, noodles, cookbooks, kitchenware and a number of other culinary goods. These three items are among many noteworthy options.

1.Bay Area chocolate maker Karen Urbanek worked with Cindy Wong-Chen to create a special selection of Flying Noir chocolates for China Live.
2. Extra Virgin Camellia Tenuifolia (Tea) Oil is a mild alternative to olive oil that works well in Asian dishes and non-Mediterranean recipes.
3. Tea mugs and teapots designed for China Live make it easy to properly seep, strain and sip the perfect blend. Loose-leaf teas are also available for purchase. – Where (08.08.17)