King Dragon is now roaring on the site of the former Mon Kee West. But before you start feeling too bad about the demise of Mon Kee West, you might like to know that owner Chuck Louie, who heads a veritable restaurant dynasty, has just opened a new restaurant downtown. It’s called Mandarin Cove, and is related not only to Mon Kee but also the Mandarin Cove in the Beverly Center (although not, apparently, to the Mandarin Cove a few blocks away in the Wells Fargo Center, which is no longer in the family). The new Mandarin Cove is in the Bonaventure Hotel; the telephone number is (213) 488-1111.
If you’ve eaten in the other Mandarin Cove, you’ll know what to expect. The room is cool and dignified and you won’t have to ask for a fork. (You will, however, have to ask for a rice bowl if you like eating in true Chinese style.) The service is pleasant. The menu is enormous, offering everything from jellyfish and sea cucumber to chop suey and sweet and sour pork.
When you get your fortune cookie, it’s apt to say something like, “He who does not hurry walks with dignity.” Which is a good thought to keep in mind as you attempt to extricate yourself from the incredible maze of the Bonaventure.