Wow. This guy’s got the job I want.
David Chan is an L.A. based Attorney, and he keeps a spreadsheet of keeping careful track of all the Chinese Restaurants he’s tried…all 6,297.
Chan, 64, has eaten at 6,297 Chinese restaurants (at press time) and he has documented the experiences on an Excel spreadsheet, a data-centric diary of a gastronomic journey that spans the United States and beyond.
A lawyer and accountant by trade, the slim, bespectacled man can debate Toronto’s dim sum and rate Chinese buffets in Nashville. Name any neighborhood in Los Angeles and Chan — with a few thoughtful blinks — will produce the name of a Chinese restaurant within a few miles.
His expertise has brought him renown. Restaurant critics regularly ask him on Twitter for advice on where to eat. Food websites have sought him out to write about Chinese cuisine and its history. In Springfield, his lunch made the local news broadcasts — at 6, 9, and 10 p.m.
Scrolling to the top of his spreadsheet takes you to 1955 and a different era in Los Angeles. The only Chinese food was in Chinatown, and food was his sole connection to his culture.
The Times asked him to list his top ten restaurants, including ones in Northern California. His list was pretty damn good, it even included two places that have been featured prominently in this space: Elite and Din Tai Fung. He that surprised me a little in Lunasia.