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Best of 2001: Best Asian Markets

Hing Long Oriental Food Market and Vinh Hung
Hing Long Oriental Food Market
4644 El Cajon Boulevard, City Heights
619-280-2132 or 619-563-9986
Vinh Hung
4690 El Cajon Boulevard,
City Heights
619-283-5442

For some San Diegans who enjoy cooking Asian specialties, Convoy Street in Kearny Mesa is a long, hard journey just to buy a little Shao Hsing or galanga. But the two Asian markets within one block of each other in City Heights are a quick, freeway-optional trip from center city neighborhoods. Neither market is huge, but both are well stocked, and together they cover the waterfront (of the South China Sea). Hing Long deals primarily in Chinese imports such as rice wine in many brands, the distinctively nutty Lion and Globe peanut oil, and a good array of bottled condiments, including fermented bean curd and bean sauces. The meat-poultry-fish counter has both a live tank for fish and kosher-for-Buddhists chickens (with heads and feet, the better to make soup with, my dear). A block away, Vinh Hung shines on Southeast Asian goodies -- it's a reliable source for plump galanga roots, lemon grass fresh enough for replanting, and scores of canned or bottled Thai curry pastes that Thais (rather than yuppie farang) actually use. They, too, have some live seafood, including oysters at a price that allows for orgies. And both markets carry produce in such freshness and variety that once you've shopped there, you'll view your supermarket produce case as a hospice for expiring veggies.

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Hing Long Oriental Food Market and Vinh Hung
Hing Long Oriental Food Market
4644 El Cajon Boulevard, City Heights
619-280-2132 or 619-563-9986
Vinh Hung
4690 El Cajon Boulevard,
City Heights
619-283-5442

For some San Diegans who enjoy cooking Asian specialties, Convoy Street in Kearny Mesa is a long, hard journey just to buy a little Shao Hsing or galanga. But the two Asian markets within one block of each other in City Heights are a quick, freeway-optional trip from center city neighborhoods. Neither market is huge, but both are well stocked, and together they cover the waterfront (of the South China Sea). Hing Long deals primarily in Chinese imports such as rice wine in many brands, the distinctively nutty Lion and Globe peanut oil, and a good array of bottled condiments, including fermented bean curd and bean sauces. The meat-poultry-fish counter has both a live tank for fish and kosher-for-Buddhists chickens (with heads and feet, the better to make soup with, my dear). A block away, Vinh Hung shines on Southeast Asian goodies -- it's a reliable source for plump galanga roots, lemon grass fresh enough for replanting, and scores of canned or bottled Thai curry pastes that Thais (rather than yuppie farang) actually use. They, too, have some live seafood, including oysters at a price that allows for orgies. And both markets carry produce in such freshness and variety that once you've shopped there, you'll view your supermarket produce case as a hospice for expiring veggies.

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4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
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