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david kaplan's Profile

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dim sum in Rochester

I've heard rumblings that someplace in Rochester now serves dim sum that's on par with what you'd find in Toronto or San Francisco. Would love to check it out. Which restaurant might this be? Thanks.

Apr 12, 2014
david kaplan in New York State (exc. NYC)

Kin Khao - Thai-style Thai in SF

I haven't eaten at Kin Khao yet, nor have I tried making the recipe. But I hope to fix both of those omissions soon.

Apr 06, 2014
david kaplan in San Francisco Bay Area

Kin Khao - Thai-style Thai in SF

Tasting Table just published the recipe for Khao Tung Na Tun.

http://www.tastingtable.com/entry_det...

Apr 06, 2014
david kaplan in San Francisco Bay Area

fresh local herring -- markets in SF

This KQED post mentioned places in the East Bay to buy fresh local herring: http://blogs.kqed.org/bayareabites/20...

Has anyone spotted fresh herring for sale at markets in SF?

Feb 10, 2014
david kaplan in San Francisco Bay Area

best chicken wings in or near the Mission (SF)?

Bumping this up for Super Bowl Sunday. I was recently recommended Hog & Rocks and Giordano's. Any opinions about their (and others') wings?

Feb 02, 2014
david kaplan in San Francisco Bay Area

Kun Wo Food Products - Fresh Rice Noodles in the Mission - Confirmed! [San Francisco]

Because they only sell one thing and they know what they're doing, it doesn't take much verbal communication. With a smile and a polite, "one dollar, cut?" you'll walk away with 1.5-2.5 pounds of cut fresh rice noodles (they're generous though inconsistent with the price per pound).

Jan 31, 2014
david kaplan in San Francisco Bay Area

best chicken wings in or near the Mission (SF)?

I'm craving chicken wings, any style -- Korean to Buffalo and all points in between. I loved the smoked wings at Rebel while it existed.

Where are the best neighborhood wings nowadays?

Jan 24, 2014
david kaplan in San Francisco Bay Area

Kun Wo Food Products - Fresh Rice Noodles in the Mission - Confirmed! [San Francisco]

Unless they've changed, hours are roughly 6 am - 2 pm (sometimes earlier), 7 days.

Leave out on counter, not in fridge, and eat them same day.

They'll cut the rice sheets into noodles if you ask.

Jan 24, 2014
david kaplan in San Francisco Bay Area
1

BunMee new 2nd location in Downtown SF FiDi opens Wed 1/15/14

I was there today for lunch. I ordered bun with pork belly. Stingy portion, weak pickle on the carrots, and underseasoned fish sauce -- and the pork belly itself was flaccid. Very disappointing after having tried the banh mi recently, which was good.

I'm hoping these were first-day problems, but for now I'll take Freshroll or Bamboo over Bun Mee for a Vietnamese meal-in-a-bowl.

Jan 15, 2014
david kaplan in San Francisco Bay Area

Where'd Tea Garden go? [San Francisco]

Bumping this up. Apparently they closed sometime mid-2013, and I walked past their former space today for the first time in ages and discovered them gone.

Any word on whether the owners have opened someplace else?

Jan 08, 2014
david kaplan in San Francisco Bay Area

midtown/times square survival guide (incl hell's kitchen)

Thanks for all the advice. I wasn't aware of Midtown Lunch or Serious Eats, but they seem very helpful. From your advice and those sites, I've added a few new places to my regular rotation:

* Szechuan Gourmet. I liked the twice-cooked pork belly very much, great wok hay. I should not have ordered the lamb with cumin, which is breaded and deep fried and unsauced -- not how I like that dish.

* Larb Ubol. Sour fermented sausage!

* Simon Sips. Good coffee in an office building right on 6th at 46th.

* Maguron. Their cuban sandwich was the best hearty breakfast I've had in Midtown.

* Mad for Chicken. Delicious crispy wings and homemade pickles.

Dec 13, 2013
david kaplan in Manhattan

midtown/times square survival guide (incl hell's kitchen)

I live in San Francisco and regularly come to New York for work, usually staying in the 40's between 6th and 7th. My trips are rushed, and I rarely have the time to venture far for food, but I've come to love eating in Midtown. (When I do have time to venture far, I go downtown to Yopparai, Kuma Inn, Spicy Village, Jeepney, or Russ & Daughters.)

I'm usually eating alone and on a modest expense account -- I rarely eat anywhere that I wouldn't go back to on my own dime. Here are my favorites, and then my request for more suggestions:

* Blue Bottle, Rockefeller Center -- best early morning espresso I've found in Midtown

* Bouchon Bakery, Rockefeller Center -- good savory breakfast items to go

* Xi'an Famous Foods, 45th -- my happiest day was when I discovered they opened in Midtown and I no longer had to find a way to get to the East Village on my work trips

* Wu Liang Ye, 48th (?) -- my favorite Sichuan in Midtown, though I'm happy to be pointed elsewhere

* Ma Peche, 56th -- my favorite ramen in Midtown, especially when they have lamb or duck broth

* Danji, 51st (52nd?) -- modern Korean

* Pure Thai, 9th & 51st -- my favorite of the Hell's Kitchen Thai places, though I haven't tried Larb Ubol yet

What else should I add to my regular rotation? I'd like to find:
* heartier savory breakfast options, like a great egg sandwich
* an upscale salad bar / buffet place like City Bakery
* modestly price lunchtime sushi or bentos to go
* chicken wings, any style
* other top-notch but informal regional Chinese or Southeast Asian places

Thanks!

Dec 08, 2013
david kaplan in Manhattan

best chicken wings in Rochester?

Reporting back: thumbs up for Jeremiah's. I like the variety and especially like the sauce on the chipotle wings. Extra points for them not being breaded or overly sauced. Thanks for the recs!

Oct 22, 2013
david kaplan in New York State (exc. NYC)

Lower East Side / Chinatown: Southeast Asian & non-Cantonese Chinese

I'm visiting from San Francisco for several nights in the area and am looking for innovative or hard-to-find Asian cuisines. Since San Francisco is blessed with excellent Cantonese and Vietnamese, I'd like to have other Chinese regional and Southeast Asian food.

I love Xi'an Famous Foods and Jeepney (not LES, but close enough) and am eager to try Pok Pok Pad Thai. What else should I try? I have a special weakness for dao xiao mien (knife-shaved noodles) and other kinds of handmade noodles, southeast Asian pork like Lao sausage, and anything fermented like Japanese shiokara or Thai-style sour sausage.

Thanks very much.

Oct 22, 2013
david kaplan in Manhattan

best chicken wings in Rochester?

Buffalo style or other styles -- where are the current favorites? Is Jeremiahs Tavern still the gold standard? Thanks.

Oct 11, 2013
david kaplan in New York State (exc. NYC)

Ba Shan, Bar Shu, or Baozi Inn tonight?

These three Fuchsia Dunlop-advised restaurants focus on different Chinese regional cuisines (Hunan, Sichuan, and northern -- respectively). Does any stand out more than the others on quality and authenticity? I'm familiar with those cuisines and with her cookbooks but will only have time to try one of the three. Which to choose?

Thanks.

May 21, 2013
david kaplan in U.K./Ireland

Beast and the Hare on Guerrero [San Francisco]

I've long been a fan of brunch at Beast and the Hare, particularly the duck hash. However, today things were seriously off: the usually moist hash was dried out, and the sunny-side up eggs on top were cooked to hardness. My usual favorite brunch dish was, for the first time, forgettable.

I hope this is a one-time slip and not the start of a downhill slide.

Jan 06, 2013
david kaplan in San Francisco Bay Area

Community Survey: Dan Dan Noodles (Simplified: 担担面 Traditional: 擔擔麵 Pinyin: dàndànmiàn)

My favorite is also Z&Y, though they can be inconsistent. At its best, Z&Y's dan dan mien is oily rather than watery; spicy (both heat and numbing); and not overwhelmed by raw garlic. The worst versions of dan dan mien I've had elsewhere have been watery/soupy (a matter of preference, perhaps, but not mine), overshadowed by raw garlic or raw scallion, or too sweet.

Most of my dan dan mien intake is now at home. With chili oil on hand, it's a very fast and easy home prep, with latitude to experiment with the balance of flavors. I start with Fuchsia Dunlop's second recipe, use pork instead of beef, and add an almost imperceptible touch of sugar and chinkiang vinegar. I underboil the noodles slightly and prefer West Coast Noodle's "vegetarian" noodle -- which is thinner than the Shanghai noodle but thicker than most dan dan mien noodles. When I remember, I add peanuts, but by the time I've assembled the bowls I'm too excited to eat and forget about the peanuts.

Z&Y used to be near my office, but I'm now just South of Market during the day. I'd love a great nearby dan dan mien lunch option. Any finds?

Jan 01, 2013
david kaplan in San Francisco Bay Area

Butter Pie (Butter Love Bakeshop) at the Underground Market

Unfortunately I don't remember the color. But I do remember enjoying that pie enough that I'd be happy to take another chance on it.

Dec 02, 2012
david kaplan in San Francisco Bay Area

SF Metreon -- your favorites?

I have been a few times since it opened. I agree with other posters: fresh, good variety, tasty. The downside: maddeningly slow lines because the roll-wrapping is laborious. The place ranks with Tartine as a process-engineering disaster. But worth it if you go early.

Sep 03, 2012
david kaplan in San Francisco Bay Area

Any good Asian in the Mission?

Has Cha Ya improved? My one meal there, years ago, was the worst I've had at a San Francisco restaurant. Leaden tempura, flavorless broth, incoherent vegetable combinations -- there was nothing even passable about the food.

Jul 01, 2012
david kaplan in San Francisco Bay Area

SF Metreon -- your favorites?

I work nearby and realized that I've overlooked the revamped Metreon as a lunch option. The SF Metreon site mentions FreshRoll (Vietnamese), Inay (Filipino), and other options. What are your current favorite Metreon dishes? Thanks.

May 28, 2012
david kaplan in San Francisco Bay Area

B & M Mei Sing [San Francisco]

The bittermelon is an unexpected downtown treat. But the fish breading at B&M Mei Sing is heavy for my taste.

They'll do anything you ask. One of my current favorite made-up dishes is bittermelon and chashu chow-fun. It's how I get all of my favorite things from B&M Mei Sing in one dish.

May 19, 2012
david kaplan in San Francisco Bay Area
1

Wo Hing General Store — thoughts? [SF]

Apr 14, 2012
david kaplan in San Francisco Bay Area

Hand pulled noodles and knife cut noodles? Best options in SF (or BART accessible)

Perhaps just one dish on the menu, but one knife-shaved noodle (dao xiao mien) dish is worth 100 other dishes! Five Happiness is good but my favorite dao xiao mien rendition in SF is at Shanghai House, out on Balboa, a few blocks beyond Shanghai Dumpling King. Great noodles, good seasoning, and nicely cooked vegetables mixed in.

Mar 17, 2012
david kaplan in San Francisco Bay Area

Nymphenburg area, Munich

Not much Munich eating. I skipped the Nymphenburg area entirely and took my two free meals in the city center:

1) snacking at the Viktualienmarkt, where there are lots of food stalls. I can't remember the names of the places, but there was a large seafood place with excellent matjes herring, and lots of great options for sausage and leberkase

2) dinner at Der Pschorr, a restaurant on the Viktualienmarkt, for Bavarian specialties. Delicious sauerkraut and cold cabbage slaw, roast pork, and so on. One can reserve online using a multilingual interface. Would go back there in a heartbeat.

For whatever it's worth, the Munich airport has good options. I like the Thai beef salad at Bamee and the Weisswurst breakfast at the first place one comes to when entering Terminal H.

Mar 07, 2012
david kaplan in Europe

Advice for making Bo Ssam (Aka Korean pork shoulder)

I took it as ssamjang plus extra gochujang and liked it that way. I think doenjang+gochujang would have been too doenjang-y. But I really love gochujang.

Feb 28, 2012
david kaplan in Home Cooking

Nymphenburg area, Munich

I will be in Munich briefly this week and am hoping for recommendations within walking distance of Schloss Nymphenburg. Unfortunately I won't be able to venture far.

I am looking for German food or other cuisines that are hard to find in the US. (So I'd pass on Italian.) No fine dining -- just hearty, causal spots for breakfast, snacks, and full meals. I don't mind if it's touristy so long as the food is good.

Thanks for your help!

Feb 27, 2012
david kaplan in Europe

Christianshavn, Copenhagen

What do you recommend within a few blocks of the Christianshavn metro station? Not fine dining, but solid everyday restaurants, cafes, and take-out shops. I'm familiar with Lagkagehuset but not much beyond that. Thanks in advance.

Feb 26, 2012
david kaplan in Europe

Kimchi in SF

That's a great tip. What other surprises -- in addition to the good sandwiches -- are on offer at Rhea's?

Feb 19, 2012
david kaplan in San Francisco Bay Area