CHINATOWN, Pennsylvania (WPVI) -- Shiao Lan Kung has become a second home to the staff and community members over the course of three decades.
On January 14th, 2024, they closed their doors for the owners' retirement, serving their final dish in Chinatown.
The original owner, Anna Lee, opened the restaurant in the late 1980s.
"She brought the... culinary art from Hong Kong to America. It's a tough journey as a Chinese immigrant. Doesn't speak much english. However, this place is part of the American dream story," said manager, and Lee's nephew, Calvin Au.
As the years progressed, family became the secret ingredient to their success.
"Without this place...my family would be different. This place brought the family back together. My mom, my dad is working in the kitchen. My sister helps a lot, my brother helps a lot," said Au.
Growing up, the restaurant was a go-to spot for Au in his daily life.
"After work, after school, where do we go? Shiao Lan Kung." said Au.
"It will definitely feel funny without this place now. I've been working here thirty years. It's like a little shelter. Now that shelter has been passed on to somebody else. All good things come to an end, that's the way it goes," he continued.
Through their over thirty years of service, they faced trials such as the pandemic.
As they served their final dish, they were happy to have made it to this point where they can close on their own terms.
"We survived through so many things, we're so thankful that it's like a voluntary retirement," said Au.
Their final day of operations commenced like any other, with family by their side serving community members in Chinatown.