As a new Chinese-American student at American University, I wanted to find the best options for Chinese food for when I want a conveniently located taste of home. In order to taste test each restaurant, I tried each of their takes on one of my favorite dishes from childhood: steamed pork dumplings. Here is my ranking of the five options for Chinese food near American University based on quality, price, and convenience.

5. P.F. Chang's

This classic Asian-themed chain has a location in Chevy Chase, Maryland, as apart of four restaurants in the Shops at Wisconsin Place. The food is just fine, as you might normally expect from a P.F. Chang's. An order of steamed pork dumplings looks and tastes like your average tray of ready-made, frozen dumplings. Because of its relatively expensive prices and relatively far distance from campus, P.F. Chang's places at the bottom of this list. Still, if you're looking for a nice dine-in experience, the restaurant provides a sophisticated atmosphere and there's a lot to do in the area nearby.

4. Spring Garden

Spring Garden provides a pretty similar quality in food as P.F. Chang's, but is more hit-or-miss with each dish. The dumpling wraps seemed to be made in-house, but were much too doughy for my liking. Still, the restaurant is much cheaper than P.F. Chang's and a lot closer to campus. From my experience, their takeout service is also faster, perhaps due to its counter-service model. Spring Garden is also a better option for some quick delivery or takeout. The restaurant provides a relatively nice and cozy experience if you want to dine-in instead.

3. Mayflower Chinese Restaurant

I would say that the quality of Mayflower's food is pretty much exactly the same as its sister restaurant Spring Garden, but less expensive. Mayflower's dumpling wraps are made in house, but like Spring Garden, the dough ended up being a bit too thick for my liking. Still, the restaurant is less expensive and may be the most convenient option for students on this list as it is less than a block from the Tenleytown-AU metro station. As a counter-service restaurant with a pretty small and worn space, Mayflower is definitely better as a delivery or takeout option.

2. Satay Club

Satay Club is also conveniently located in Tenleytown, a short walk from the shuttle bus stop by the metro. Unlike the other restaurants on this list, they offer table service in addition to delivery. Their food is slightly better in quality too: Satay Club's dumplings had a much fresher onion taste that reminded me of the homemade dumplings my mother would make. With a fairly convenient location, nice dining ambience, and quality food at a fair price, Satay Club places second on this list.

1. Meiwah Restaurant

Meiwah Restaurant in Chevy Chase is the best Chinese takeout option in the area. While there is no way to order takeout or delivery online, it is seriously worth it to call. The restaurant provides quality Chinese food at very fair prices with both an authentic dumpling filling and dough. If you're looking for table service, Meiwah's elegant dining room (expect to see some people in suits) is on the second story of a street corner building, providing a wonderful view of the city through its floor-to-ceiling windows. Still, it's just as easy to order at the counter and pick up some delicious takeout in a timely fashion.

My search for the best Chinese takeout options led me to locations all over the Tenleytown/Friendship Heights area. Whether you're looking for an authentic taste of home or just some classic fast food, each restaurant has something great to offer. I hope this list is helpful in finding the perfect option for your next order of Chinese food near American University.