Tag Archives: Chinatown

My search for the best dumplings in New York continues….

JOE'S SHANGHAI, 9 Pell Street (between Bowery and Doyers Street), Chinatown

The first place most New Yorkers, including myself, have ever tasted soup dumplings is probably at Joe’s Shanghai. It opened in Flushing in 1995 and then soon opened a second location in the heart of Chinatown.

That’s part of why it’s so popular. It’s pretty old in terms of restaurants catering to Shanghainese cuisine and it’s in the middle of where everybody wants to eat Chinese food.

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Category: Dumplings

My search for the best dumplings in New York continues….

21 SHANGHAI HOUSE, 21 Division Street (between Catherine and Market Street), Chinatown

The new restaurants that open in the heart of Chinatown never get the same amount of press and fanfare as the hot restaurants that open in Brooklyn or Chelsea. So they often slip under-the-radar. (more…)


Category: Dumplings

I’m counting down the 100 best dishes I tasted in 2015…

It was actually very difficult to narrow down all the things I tasted this year to the 100 Best. It was a good year for food in New York. Food is the best way to create memories and these top ten are dishes I’ll never forget.

NUMBER 10: GRIDDLE PANCAKE SKEWER at TASTE OF NORTHERN CHINA

Griddle Pancake at TASTE OF NORTHERN CHINA

The specialty of the house at this hard-to-find Chinatown haunt are northern Chinese skewers. Proteins and vegetables are put on a stick, marinated with spices, and then grilled. The most surprising one I discovered was not made of protein or vegetables. It was a pancake. Playfully presented on two sticks (also because it makes it easier to cook the bread over the charcoals), the pancake is like a dense Naan bread, slightly doughy and enhanced by its grilled exterior and seasoned with the same spice mixture the others get. While cumin, chile, and salt are obvious for meat and vegetables, it works even better on this pancake. Price: $1.25

TASTE OF NORTHERN CHINA
88 East Broadway, #106
(entrance on Forsyth Street),
Chinatown
(917) 302-8831

NUMBER 9: CHOCOLATE NUTELLA BABKA at BREADS BAKERY

Chocolate Nutella Babka at BREADS BAKERY

If you’ve never had the Jewish cake known as babka, it’s both good and bad to start with this one. Good because it is so delicious, but bad because you might never find another babka to compare. This one is the perfect babka. Each layer is filled with Belgian chocolate and Nutella and tastes yeasty, buttery, and sweet. While it might look like a gnarled burnt pretzel, the flavors and freshness speaks volumes. It certainly helps that the very busy Breads bakes their babkas three times throughout the day. Price: $12

BREADS BAKERY
18 East 16th Street (between Fifth Avenue and Union Square West),
Union Square
(212) 633-2253
breadsbakery.com

NUMBER 8: JERK FRIED WINGS at GLADY’S

Jerk Wings at GLADY'S

It takes chutzpah for a white Jewish kid to open a Caribbean restaurant in Crown Heights, a vibrant Caribbean neighborhood. But the community has embraced him. There is no denying he is doing this food justice. A perfect example are the chicken wings, which are sticky and sweet with a backbone of that smoky, spicy jerk heat. Each piece of meat just fell right off the bone yet held on tight to lots of flavor. On the side was not blue cheese, but a sweet, spicy dipping sauce. Price: $7

GLADY’S
788 Franklin Avenue (at Lincoln Place),
Crown Heights, Brooklyn
(718) 622-0249
gladysnyc.com

NUMBER 7: PIZZA at ARCADE BAKERY

Pizza at ARCADE BAKERY

I love hidden cafés and restaurants. You totally feel in the know when you walk into a non-descript office building confident about the hidden little bakery in the lobby. That’s the case with Arcade Bakery, but there not just a gimmick. Their bread and pastries are some of the best in the city. The crust is not usually my favorite part of a pizza, but here it’s all about the bread. The rich softness of the olive-oil slicked crust made me wonder if there was cheese inside the crust (there wasn’t). Each bite revealed a warm yeasty interior and I got lost in the doughy bites contemplating the beauty of life itself. All while hiding out inside an office building lobby. Price: $9

ARCADE BAKERY
220 Church Street (between Thomas and Worth Street),
Tribeca
(212) 227-7895
arcadebakery.com

NUMBER 6: THE KOREANO at FUKU

The Koreano at FUKU

Many food critics have proclaimed the fried chicken sandwich the dish of the year. I tend to agree and most people’s favorite is David Chang’s Korean spin at Fuku. I was skeptical by the hype, but quickly won over. The gigantic piece of chicken is comprised of juicy thigh meat and a super crispy breading that hides lots of spices and flavor. Even more flavor hid inside the bottle of magical Ssam sauce. The funky flavors of ssämjang (fermented bean and chile paste) mingle with the sweetness of sherry vinegar and the spiciness of kochujang. It’s truly incredible and addicting. Price: $9

FUKU
163 First Avenue (between East 10th and East 11th Street),
East Village
momofuku.com/new-york/fuku/

I’m counting down the 100 best dishes I tasted in 2015…

Cheung Fun at SUN HING LUNG CO.

There are an endless number of hidden food options in Chinatown. Some are literal holes in the wall. others are down a hallway, but Sun Hin Lung Co. is really a window attached to a tofu factory. From the window, you can purchase excellent rice noodle crepes that are cooked with scrambled eggs (if you like) and a variety of meats. You can have it for breakfast or as a midday snack, but whenever you eat it, make sure to try it with the three sauces (including a peanut sauce). Price: $1.50

SUN HING LUNG CO.
58 Henry Street (between Market and Catherine Street),
Chinatown
(212) 962-7032

I’m counting down the 100 best dishes I tasted in 2015…

Wheat Noodles at SHU JIAO FU ZHOU

Peanut butter and noodles might sound like an unlikely combination, but it works perfectly. The springy noodles at Shu Jiao Fu Zhou come with an earthy, slightly sweet peanut butter sauce finished with soy sauce and scallions. When the noodles soak up the tang and richness of the sauce, you wonder why you’ve never tried this before. Price: $2

SHU JIAO FU ZHOU
118 Eldridge Street (at Broome Street),
Chinatown
(212) 625-2532

I’m counting down the 100 best dishes I tasted in 2015…

Fish Ball Soup at SHU JIAO FU ZHOU

In Chinatown, it’s always the places you’re least likely to wander into that are worth wondering into. All the incredibly cheap dishes (nothing was over $4) at Shu Jia Fu Zhou were worth much more than I paid. I even liked the scary sounding fish ball soup/ The clear broth that the fish balls were floating in was as delicate and complex as anything I’ve had at any high-end restaurant. Its subtle scallion and celery notes gave the tender fish balls a perfect bath. Price: $2

SHU JIAO FU ZHOU
118 Eldridge Street (at Broome Street),
Chinatown
(212) 625-2532

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