Season 2 Episode 11

The Chinese Restaurant

Aired Thursday 9:00 PM May 23, 1991 on NBC



  • Trivia

    • The restaurant host, credited as "Bruce" is played by James Hong.  James Hong also played a waiter at a NYC Chinese Restaurant in the Season 6, Episode 8 (Edith Breaks Out) of All in the Family.

    • After Jerry bets Elaine $50 to eat food off a strangers table she tries offering them $25 speaking through her teeth with a smile on her face the whole time. Afterwards the group starts to ask each other what she said. If you listen you can make out Larry David (co-creator of the show and co-writer of this episode)'s voice.

    • Jerry, George and Elaine are not the only ones have trouble getting a table. Norman Brenner (Michael Richards' stand-in) can be seen sitting by the door waiting for a table when the gang enters; he is still waiting there when the gang walks out.

    • In describing the list of phone calls that will occur based on his seeing the woman from his uncle's office, Jerry's description of his family is quite inconsistent with what is seen in other episodes. Jerry says that the uncle he was supposed to visit is his mother's sister's husband. However, it is later seen that Jerry's mother only has one sibling, Uncle Leo. As well, Jerry mentions having a sister, who is never mentioned again in the series.

  • Quotes

    • George: Yes, I'm expecting a call for Costanza.
      Bruce: Yes, someone call. I say "Cartwright! Cartright!" but no one come and I hang up.

    • Elaine: Remember when you first went out to eat with your parents? Remember, it was such a treat. You go and they serve you this different food that you never saw before. They put it in front of you and it was such a delicious and exciting adventure… and now I just feel like a big sweaty hog waiting for them to fill up the trough.

    • George: If anything happens here can I count on you?
      Jerry: What?
      George: If we decide to go at it.
      Jerry: Yeah, I want to get into a rumble.

    • Elaine: You ever notice how happy people are when they finally get a table? They feel so special because they've been chosen. It's enough to make you SICK!!
      Jerry: Boy. You are REALLY hungry.

    • (After the restaurant owner makes George miss Tatiana's phone call.)
      George: She called. He yelled 'Cartwright'. I missed her.
      Jerry: Who's Cartwright?
      George: (pause)...I'm Cartwright.
      Jerry: You're not Cartwright.

    • George: The only excuse she might possibly have accepted is if I told her I am in reality Batman, and I'm very sorry I just saw the Bat-signal!

    • George: So, we start to fool around and I begin to perceive this impending… intestinal requirement whose needs are going to surpass by great length anything in the sexual realm.

    • Elaine: I feel like just walking over to a table and taking food off of someone's plate.
      Jerry: I'll tell you what. There's $50 in it for you if you do it.
      George: $50? For $50, I'll put my face in their soup and blow!

    • Elaine: Health cookies. I hate those dustboard, fructose things.

    • Jerry: The Women's Movement just can't seem to make any progress in the world of bribery, can they?

    • George: You're never gonna stop crime, we should at least be clean.

    • Jerry: New York to Long Island. Long Island to Florida. It's like the Bermuda Triangle. Unfortunately no one ever disappears.

    • Elaine: Movie theater hot dogs, I'd rather lick the food off the floor.

    • Bruce: I tell her you not here, she say curse word, I hang up.

    • Bruce: Seinfeld, four.

    • Jerry: I can't go to a bad movie by myself. What, am I gonna make sarcastic remarks to strangers?

    • Jerry: This isn't plans one through eight. It's Plan Nine! The worst movie EVER made!

  • Notes

    • This is one of the few "real time" episodes of the show.

    • The original script had George Elaine and Jerry talking about their least favorite holiday when they entered the resturant, George picked Halloween, Elaine picked the forth of July and Jerry picked New Year's Eve.

    • Kramer doesn't appear in this episode. Larry David explains this by saying that at this point in the series; Kramer was known as a character that never left the apartment building. Had this been a Season 3 episode, Kramer would have been there. Michael Richards has expressed deep regret in Kramer's absence in this classic episode.

  • Allusions