Xinhua Chinese Restaurant in Berkeley closed

Over the weekend, Shen Hua restaurateur Edward Chu posted an alarming sign in the window of his beloved neighborhood business on College Avenue. For the past 25 years, it has been the place for Cal students to bring friends and family while visiting from out of town, and also a place that has hosted many graduation dinners and other celebrations.

But after serving the East Bay community for nearly three decades, Chu made the difficult decision to close his famous restaurant for good. Xin Hwa’s last working day is Sunday, June 26th.

“After a long and thoughtful consideration, I decided it was time to shut down Xinhua,” Zhou’s note read. “The past few years have presented challenges that we still face. But even through adversity, I am encouraged by the resilience of the teamwork, fellow business owners, and clients.”

Xinhua’s owner, Edward Chu, posted this message to his customers over the weekend, noting that the beloved Chinese restaurant will be closing its doors after 25 years.

Katie Dodd / Svgat

Salt and pepper squid in Xinhua.

Salt and pepper squid in Xinhua.

John L

Left to Right: Edward Chu, owner of Xin Hua, posted a note in his restaurant window about the upcoming closure. Salt and pepper squid dish inside the favorite Chinese restaurant.

Born and raised in San Francisco, Cho has worked in restaurants in one form or another since childhood. He eventually opened his neighborhood restaurant, Xin Hua, in 1998, serving Nordic-style Chinese cuisine in coveted dishes such as spicy dry-fried chicken, crispy salt, squid, peppers, creamy prawns, honey, and walnuts.

Xin Hua is the latest shutdown to hit the East Bay restaurant industry, and the restaurant noted the hardships it has endured over the past two years due to the ongoing pandemic.

On May 10, Little Shin on Piedmont Street in Auckland closed permanently after four decades of community service. This was followed by the closure of another restaurant decades ago in Auckland, where the Great Wall Chinese Company, on College Avenue, sold its business to new owners. The three restaurants spread the news to customers with banners hanging in their windows.

Honey Nut Shrimp in Xin Hua.

Honey Nut Shrimp in Xin Hua.

John L

As for Shen Hua, a neighborhood favorite known for its plump pot stickers and huge portions of wok-kissed chow mein, regulars and those looking to relive those past festivities can enjoy one last time before the beloved restaurant closes its kitchen for good.

“I want to take this opportunity to sincerely thank each and every one of you for supporting Shen Hua over the past twenty-five years,” Zhou wrote. “I value the beautiful conversations, friendships, and memories I will cherish forever.”

Xin Hua, 2914 College Ave. , Berkeley. Open Wednesday, June 22, through Sunday, June 26, 4:30 PM – 8:30 PM

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