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swannee's Profile

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Best dim sum in Chinatown?

Nam Wah isn't traditional in that one orders from a menu, not from perambulating carts. The dishes are traditional, by and large, and fairly good.

1 day ago
swannee in Manhattan

Chinatown with kids?

Congee Village is a fun setting with lots of families.

Aug 31, 2015
swannee in Manhattan

Best dim sum in Chinatown?

A much discussed --often with violent disagreement---question. If you want carts and huge crowds, I would suggest Jing Fong. Smaller at Oriental Garden. Non- traditional at Nom Wah. I personally would go for Shanghai, Cantonese 4 kinds and roast meats, of which there are numerous choices. Dimsum is not NY's forte.

Aug 27, 2015
swannee in Manhattan
1

Personal Challenge: Eat at every Asian restaurant on 82nd Ave between NE Russell and SE Foster

My wife and I are basically eating Chinese food throughout the NW, and the best meal between LA and Vancouver (including the Bay Area) was last night at Ocean City. Straightforward Cantonese but perfect ingredients and preparation--scallops with XO and sugar peas and celery, salt and pepper fish, choi sum with oyster sauce and saltfish fried rice. Every bite was perfect.

Aug 25, 2015
swannee in Metro Portland

Report on Facing East

I as a New Yorker was curious to try Facing East in Bellevue since I am passing through and it had good reports. My reaction was mixed. Fun scene, typically boistrous with many Taiwanese accents. We couldn't order much since it was only my wife and I. We had pressed tofu, soy sauce hard boiled egg and seaweed--ok, although the seaweed was unusually thick. The bitter melon with salted egg was excellent and beautifully cut. The three cup chicken was decent, but very sweet. The salt pepper shrimp were, however, very uneven--some were OK, but many tasted strongly of iodine and were clearly not fresh. I have to confess that I was taken aback.

Aug 21, 2015
swannee in Greater Seattle
1

Last minute help, please!

Sripaphai and many of the best Flushing places are near subway stations and easy and safe trips to Manhattan at pretty much any hour of the night. Ditto for Brooklyn Heights and Park Slope.

Aug 19, 2015
swannee in Manhattan
1

Personal Challenge: Eat at every Asian restaurant on 82nd Ave between NE Russell and SE Foster

I' m a New Yorker who visits your wonderful city regularly. Haven't tried many of these, but my favorite is Ocean City, but not for dim sum (OK, just not stellar).

Aug 18, 2015
swannee in Metro Portland

Lunch at Hummus Place - Oh The Zhug!

The zhug is great at the UWS location, too. It varies a great deal from week to week in terms of heat and amount of fenugreek, coriander, etc., but that is a good sign: it means its homemade. The pita, on the other hand, has suffered over the years, and is no longer worth getting-- even the tortiallas are better. I lunch there once a week, nevertheless, mostly for the zhug (good sides, too).

Aug 10, 2015
swannee in Manhattan

some recent chinatown noodles

Spicy Village is sort of a miracle IMO because all the attention from Bittman and the NYT has not spoiled them. Still really charming family, stick to the hui mei noodles, the big plate of chicken, and dumplings with lots of hot sauce (good) and vinegar.

Jul 28, 2015
swannee in Manhattan
1

Wan Chai Seafood in Flushing (Chow-meet Recap)

It was an excellent meal in good company. For me the most special dishes were the rice--I never had such tiny rice and so perfectly cooked--and the bitter melon, both because I love bitter melon, and because I had never had it prepared this way at all (usually either stirfried, stuffed, or poached and served cold).

Jul 22, 2015
swannee in Outer Boroughs
1

Ocean Grill

AG does serve brunch on Saturday, but not the good deal it is on Sunday. I haven't been to OG for brunch on Saturday.

Jul 14, 2015
swannee in Manhattan

Ocean Grill

Brunch is certainly the best meal. But I find the comparison with Atlantic Grill a bit strange: AG is both more expensive and much noisier. Brunch at AG is also a great deal, but on Sunday only.
Average bill at Marea is probably 4 or 5 times higher than Ocean Grill. For most of us, Marea is a once a year special splurge---and since I live half the time in Italy, I prefer to spend my $250 (if I don't indulge in the crudi) at Bernadin.

Jul 13, 2015
swannee in Manhattan

New Rules for Serving Raw Fish

I would think that this will make a difference only at the high-end places.

Jul 12, 2015
swannee in Manhattan

Hot Kitchen in Flushing

I love S&T's pressed tofu with celery, watercress, conch, spicy bamboo, as well as the tendon. But I need to try Hot Kitchen as well.

Jul 10, 2015
swannee in Outer Boroughs

Hot Kitchen in Flushing

I find that S & T has especially good cold dishes. how are they at Hot Kitchen?

Jul 09, 2015
swannee in Outer Boroughs

New food court in Flushing

There were about 25 places open the other day, including some very interesting ones, and about 200 eaters at 9 PM. The Sichuan cold dishes may well have come from S & T, they looked indentical. Two dry wok places looked good, plus the usual noodle soups, Taiwanese pancakes, lanzhou noodles, smoothies, etc.
Didn't eat this time because we had just been to OK Ryan nearby. I liked it and the Family Meal had many choices. Not great san bei ji however. Very friendly people.

Jul 09, 2015
swannee in Outer Boroughs

upscale Asian

What about Oriental Garden? Not fusion, not terribly creative, but excellent seafood and ingredients.

Jul 06, 2015
swannee in Manhattan

La Grenouille vs Bouley

They are utterly different kind of experiences. La Grenouille is drop-dead gorgeous with Proustian environs and service. The soufflés are the best in NY. The food is on a very high level, but neither unique nor creative. Bouley is much more about the food. It is a nice room and has OK service. Grenouille is probably a little more expensive. I personally would choose Grenouille for this kind of event, although there is better food to be had in NY (except for the soufflés).

Jul 04, 2015
swannee in Manhattan

new branch of Legend Sichuan on 3rd street near Sullivan

Just tried this new branch. It was fine, nothing particularly special or very spicy, but perfectly adequate--which is not my opinion of the Legend on W 72 which has gotten worse and worse, and even served pre-formed frozen "chicken meat" in a dry casserole on my last (literally) visit.
We had the tendon, the chicken dry casserole (to compare!), lamb with cumin, and string beans.

Jul 03, 2015
swannee in Manhattan

New York - Best Michelin 3 Star

So interesting: I have been a few times to Daniel and have found the service to be as good as any in NYC. I am French-speaking, maybe that helps (it's unforgiveable if it does: I expect speaking Chinese at a hole in the wall to make a big difference--and it does: but it should make zero difference at a restaurant of this level and price.) My problem with Daniel is simply that the cuisine is neither unique or interesting enough to merit 3 Stars in my book. Perfect, delicious: yes. But that, to me, is 2 Star.
I do, however, vastly prefer the traditional course meal format. I am simply not into the menu degustation with 20 tiny plates.

Jun 28, 2015
swannee in Manhattan

[Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam] Northern Vietnamese lunch at Tuấn & Tú, Pasteur

PS What is the sauce just above the fish. Is it shrimp sauce ("ham ha" in Cantonese)?

[Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam] Northern Vietnamese lunch at Tuấn & Tú, Pasteur

Very fascinating. Were those peanuts on top of the fish?

[Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam] Imperial Hue lunch at Quán Ruốc

I grew up in Texas and spent summer every year in Alabama without a/c, but I would die now in Singapore (or Vietnam in summer) without it. I agree Lau about the water: I have eaten everywhere street food without ever having a problem. The one time I did get sick was when I cautiously had a shave ice in a third world setting.

[Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam] Fried Radish Cake from Bột Chiên Đạt Thành

To me, that looks worthy of a trip to Vietnam!

Cortina?

Went to Tivoli last year and it was still excellent. I agree the Baita Fraina is a very good tratoria and has delicious fritelle for afternoon tea in August (only). Pontejel is another good trattoria. Da Aurelio is worth the arduous trip, but only if you don't get carsick and have a designated non-drinking driver (or stay there). Meloncino is not bad, but very limited, and rather pretentious. The setting is lovely, however (not hard in Cortina!).

Jun 23, 2015
swannee in Italy

[Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam] Imperial Hue lunch at Quán Ruốc

This looks awesome! for a real belachan maniac like me, it sounds fabulous. And I have never seen a single one of those dishes.

[Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam] Lunch at the Courtyard, Hotel Continental Saigon

Any idea where the fondness for sweet tastes comes from? Can it be the French?

Olympic Peninsula

Any recommendations for the Olympic Peninsula, especially Port Angeles?

Jun 22, 2015
swannee in Pacific Northwest

[Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam] "Bánh mì Op La" from Hòa Mã

Will be expecting more reports from Saigon!!!

Best fried rice

If I want marrow with rice, I prefer risotto alla Milanese (though the best I know is at Al Matarel in Milan).

Jun 22, 2015
swannee in Manhattan