This week, Emerald Chinese Cuisine unveiled a sweeping redesign which may be jaw-dropping to diners who have frequented the Kearny Mesa restaurant in the 24 years since it first opened on Convoy Street. Though the Lew family has been been slowly making upgrades to the interior, they recently shuttered for ten days to put the finishing touches on the thorough refresh.
The long-awaited changes include a new bar and lounge that will feature a daily 3 to 6 p.m. happy hour with special dishes and deals on drinks ranging from wine to craft cocktails and beer. At lunch, the once-overwhelming list of over more than 100 dim sum choices has been culled to the 65 bestsellers, which are ticked off on an order sheet and brought out hot and fresh from the kitchen rather than being served off of dim sum carts. New also are different varieties of savory rice porridge and noodles, from duck spicy noodles to panfried vermicelli topped with beef and egg.
And there are now 22 new dim sum options for dinner, while the vast a la carte choices have been cut in half in favor of fresh dishes from the chef which include bacon-wrapped oysters and baked seafood in a crab shell. Emerald plans to introduce new plates quarterly, drawing from seasonal ingredients and inspiration from the owners' culinary travels.