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Best Dishes 2014

Last Monday: Corn Tzukemen at the LES lvan Ramen. Nice, thick char shu and roasted plum tomatoes with the noodles, served with a warm corn chowder with lots of bacon down below. A really great end-of-summer meal. lf it's still on the menu, get it!

Sep 17, 2014
howdini in Manhattan
1

Beijing Pop Kebab -- new nothern Chinese restaurant at 122 Mulberry

Fantastic find, thanks! Maybe tomorrow for lunch...

Sep 15, 2014
howdini in Manhattan
1

Hunan Kitchen of Grand Sichuan in Bensonhurst: you are dead to me

This is from one of my comments in swannee's review of the Flushing location, linked to in the OP [and again, for the sake of clarity, l'm discussing the food at the Bensonhurst location]:

"l tried the [l think it was called] braised smoked bamboo with pork. Really flavorful, lots of wok hay, but the bamboo was really inconsistent in terms of texture: some of it was *very* woody, inedibly so, some was very tender, and a bunch was in the middle. Also, not very much pork at all, just a smattering of very thin slices in a good-sized portion of bamboo. l'm not sure whether this was because the pork is just used as a flavoring agent, or if it was a skimpy portion. Since "with pork" is in the name of the dish, l think l'm forced to assume the latter? Still, great flavor, and very nice service."

Sep 09, 2014
howdini in Outer Boroughs

Hunan Kitchen of Grand Sichuan in Bensonhurst: you are dead to me

Yes, absolutely: sorry if this post was unclear on that point.

Sep 08, 2014
howdini in Outer Boroughs

Hunan Kitchen of Grand Sichuan in Bensonhurst: you are dead to me

They say the fourth time's the charm...actually, no, they never say that, but one would hope it'd be the case when discussing the sister restaurant to a highly regarded Hunanese eatery.

After reading swannee's [http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/9763...] and Sifton's glowing reviews of the Flushing original, l was super-psyched to try the new 18th Av. location, just a few blocks away from my place. l had a promising start: a big plate at lunch of very good braised pork shoulder [one of Mao's favorites!]. My second visit was not quite as successful, a relatively flavorful but rather difficult to eat braised smoked bamboo with pork. l felt the place held promise, and vowed to have one of swannee's recommended dishes on my next visit [see link above, also for more detail on my experiences at the Bensonhurst restaurant].

Visit #3 is where it went south, when l was served a "big plate of disappointment," [yes, l'm quoting myself] 水煮豆干: water cooked pressed tofu. The dish l was served was in no way similar to what swannee described, despite the assurances of my waiter that it was the same dish. lt, in a word, sucked.

OK. Well. Because l'm an eternal optimist, or not very smart, l went with my son [a newly-minted kitchen professional!] for a deciding meal. To be safe, l went again with the braised pork, with the addition of stir-fried string beans, and another of swannee's recommendations, dried beef with white pepper. The pork was ok, not as flavorful as my first visit; the string beans were good, with nice wok hei. But the dried beef with white pepper, so vividly and appealingly described by swannee, was a *major* letdown: a plate full of chopped up dried peppers with a smattering of dry sliced beef that tasted, for the most part, like cecina. Salty, and not much else, with lots of heat coming from the peppers, and that's about it. Very salty, very spicy, not a lot going on flavor-wise, and a pretty small portion of beef for the money.

To add insult to crushed dreams, we were charged a dollar per bowl of rice.

At this point, l have a sneaking suspicion that the restaurant is a copycat, riding on the coattails of a well-reviewed restaurant that's far enough away to not give them any trouble. Caveat emptor.

Sep 08, 2014
howdini in Outer Boroughs

Aux Epices, New Malaysian in C'town: anyone try it yet?

Things should be authentically delicious.

Sep 02, 2014
howdini in Manhattan

Who creates the editorial voice for the NYT food section?

Really? lt's been a long time since l last read him in the NYPress, but l don't remember those annoying mannerisms when he was there.

Aug 16, 2014
howdini in Manhattan

Le Jardin Bistro on Ave. C

Thanks! Always looking for good, reasonably-priced stuff in the EV.

Aug 14, 2014
howdini in Manhattan

Who creates the editorial voice for the NYT food section?

l like "fetid." Even if it doesn't apply.

Aug 14, 2014
howdini in Manhattan

Who creates the editorial voice for the NYT food section?

I'm not sure if l'd call it florid...more the adjectives l used in the OP, twee and precious, with a soupçon of imperiousness thrown into the olla for good measure.

Aug 14, 2014
howdini in Manhattan
1

Who creates the editorial voice for the NYT food section?

Agreed on the magic!

Aug 13, 2014
howdini in Manhattan
1

Who creates the editorial voice for the NYT food section?

Immaculate Infatuation, eh? Haven't read it...is it irritating? lf so, Sifton's doing a great job!

Aug 13, 2014
howdini in Manhattan

Who creates the editorial voice for the NYT food section?

Ah, l thought he'd moved on, for some reason. lt's funny, l liked him when he was still at NYPress, now l can't stand him.

Aug 13, 2014
howdini in Manhattan

Who creates the editorial voice for the NYT food section?

"Here is [xxx]. And here is [xxx]. You wil [xxx]."

Twee; precious; incredibly irritating: here is someone in desperate need of punch-in-face.

Aug 13, 2014
howdini in Manhattan

Rare date tonight -- need recs for dinner LES

l'm late to this, but Blue Ribbon Izakaya is right next door in the hotel.

Aug 13, 2014
howdini in Manhattan

Georgia's Eastside - Most Underrated Ribs in NYC?

Whether or not they're "real" BBQ, they're pretty damn tasty and tender, and l think their BBQ sauce is very good. l work around the corner, and get takeout fairly regularly. The rib sandwich in particular is a great deal: $9.00 for five or so ribs on white bread with extra sauce and potato chips is a pretty good deal. The meat is easily pulled right off the bones, so a sandwich easy to make.

Aug 13, 2014
howdini in Manhattan

Georgia's Eastside - Most Underrated Ribs in NYC?

[that was ZaZa ;) ]

Aug 13, 2014
howdini in Manhattan

Georgia's Eastside - Most Underrated Ribs in NYC?

The cheese grits are really good.

Aug 13, 2014
howdini in Manhattan

Favorite Xiao Long Bao ( soup dumplings) in Queens?

Thanks for the rec! ls this location brand new? lt didn't show up in my google search...there's Shanghai Asian Manor at that location; did it become Shanghai 33?

ETA: just read scoopg's report...never mind!

Aug 06, 2014
howdini in Outer Boroughs

East Harbor for lunch tomorrow

l'll be with my son for lunch: what's the best time to get there? l was planning on 1pm: is that too late? l've read good things about their salt baked squid and octopus; any other must-try dishes, more in the dim sum vein? Thanks!

Aug 03, 2014
howdini in Outer Boroughs

Nice Green Bo - still don't get it

Yikes.

Aug 02, 2014
howdini in Manhattan

Which 4 breakfasts in Lower East Side would you choose?

Remedy is utterly sub-par. With all of the other excellent options in the area, and given the quality of the other restaurants that the OP lists, l fail to see how anyone can recommend it in good conscience.

Aug 01, 2014
howdini in Manhattan

Best Dishes 2014

l gotta hook up with some vendors....

Best Dishes 2014

Yes! l've been entering recommended dishes. lt lists by neighborhood, which is great.

Aug 01, 2014
howdini in Manhattan

Best Dishes 2014

Thanks for the rec...l've been looking for an app like that!

Aug 01, 2014
howdini in Manhattan
1

北方美食 - New northern Chinese in Chinatown

Ah, man! l wish l'd known about this thread last week: l was right there, and checked out the outside, but went to 88 Palace for [meh] dim sum instead. Maybe l'll check it out this Friday...thanks for posting!

Jul 29, 2014
howdini in Manhattan

chinese roast pork sandwich-new york deli style. help my dad please.

lt was one of my favorite dishes in the diners l went to, growing up on LI.

Jul 29, 2014
howdini in Manhattan

Malai Marke - a new Indian on (gasp!) 6th St.

Yeah, l'm with Pan: we've grown to really appreciate Malai, and we've both recently been disappointed by meals there. l, for one, sincerely hope that it was just hiccups, but l was surprised by that last meal, how it wasn't anywhere near the level that l'd come to expect. lt was definitely a 5, 6 tops.

l look forward to your next dispatch, Bob.

Jul 27, 2014
howdini in Manhattan

NYC Itinerary (and suggestions to fill the gaps)

Haloumi eggs is my go-to dish at their St. Marks location: make sure to slather on the harissa. Their tagines are also good.

Jul 27, 2014
howdini in Manhattan

Looking for best Dim Sum for a Sunday Brunch in NYCity

l went to 88 Palace for lunch last week, as l'd read good reports about it here, but it was meh at best.

Jul 27, 2014
howdini in Manhattan