A CHINESE-American businessman in San Francisco has caused a storm in a Japanese teacup. The serenity of the Golden Gate Park's Japanese Tea Garden, a major tourist attraction, has been disturbed by complaints it is not Japanese enough since being taken over by Hongkong-born Fred Lo. From the way the waitresses dress to the wares sold in the gift shop, San Francisco's Recreation and Park Department has been inundated with angry complaints about the way the tea garden has been run since the concession was taken away from a Japanese-American, Jack Hirose, almost a year ago and handed to Mr Lo. Complaints about Mr Lo have ranged from direct attacks on his ethnic background to gripes about the scarcity of Japanese cultural items in the gift shop and the way waitresses wear kimonos. Before Mr Lo sumo-wrestled the concession away from Mr Hirose, most of the goods on sale were made in Japan. Shoppers are outraged to discover many items are now labelled made in Hongkong or China. The incense-perfumed wooden gift shop sells everything from back scratchers and switchblade combs to Japanese dolls - but now the bright kimonos not only say ''Made in Japan'', but also ''Made in Hongkong'' or ''Made in China''. And not far from boxes ofChinese crackers are racks of postcards and vehicle licence plates bearing slogans such as ''Surfer'', ''James Dean'' and ''So Sue Me''. In the teahouse, waitresses now wear kimonos with moccasins or sneakers and jeans peeping out from underneath, which would never have been allowed when the concession was run by Mr Hirose. In a letter to Recreation and Park Commission president Trent Orr, Fusae Ito wrote: ''When you selected a Chinese concessionaire, I knew what the result would be.'' Mr Lo, who also runs gift shops in Chinatown and San Francisco's other main tourist attraction Pier 39, said his critics resented a non-Japanese running the concession. He insists the vast majority of visitors are happy with the tea garden amenities. And many of the changes that have some tea garden lovers boiling have gone largely unnoticed by others. ''It's not as if the gift shop is by the front gate,'' said Phil Arnold, assistant general manager of the Recreation and Park department. ''You don't even have to come here to enjoy the tea garden.'' However, he admitted there were ''perhaps more low-end items'' in the gift shop than under Mr Hirose, who was outbid by Mr Lo last year by about US$85,000. He said Mr Lo had done everything he could to address complaints, ''with the possible exception of the uniform of the servers in the teahouse''. ''When the concession contract went out to bid there was certainly an undercurrent that we should have restricted it to only Japanese American bidders,'' he said. ''He will never be Japanese American. Neither will I. For some people, that's a problem.''