Earlier than I hop into the questions, a particular due to my colleague Becky Hughes for filling in final week. I really feel properly rested and energized to reply one other spherical of reader questions. Right now we have now a beginner trying to attempt completely different cuisines, a customer in search of nice Cantonese and a diner who needs to eat in an exquisite house.
As all the time, in case you have your personal suggestions or questions, shoot me an electronic mail at [email protected]
Broadening One’s Eating Horizons
I wish to turn out to be extra “adventurous” and order completely different plates as an alternative of the frequent ones I all the time do. (I’ve had sufficient salads and pasta for all times!) As I simply moved to NYC, that is my excellent excuse to take action. Right here’s the catch: I’m vegetarian. I’m dying to attempt Korean, Ethiopian, Indian meals, as an illustration, however I believe some eating places don’t provide vegetarian plates in any respect. Do you have got any suggestions? — Yohana D.
I’m glad you set adventurous in quotes as a result of what’s “adventurous” to it’s possible you’ll be run-of-the-mill to another person. And even higher, all three of the cuisines you talked about have loads of entry factors for vegetarian diners. With that in thoughts, right here’s a little bit of a starter equipment: As I discussed in my publication on vegan eating, vegetarians can have a ball at Ras Plant Based mostly in Crown Heights, Brooklyn, or Bunna Cafe in Bushwick, which each focus on vegan Ethiopian meals. As for Korean, try Haenyeo in Park Slope. Go for the japchae, yache pajun and the bibimbap with tofu. And Indian delicacies is overflowing with vegetarian choices: Begin with the chili paneer tikka at Adda in Lengthy Island Metropolis, Queens.
Previous-Faculty Cantonese, Two Methods
I shall be in Manhattan in early July and am concerned about going to a Cantonese restaurant. Sadly, there aren’t any good ones in Houston, the place I reside. Would you presumably be capable of suggest any? — Ellen S.
I’ve two choices for you: If you wish to lean into historical past, it’s important to go to the brand new location of the legendary Jing Fong, at 202 Centre Road, which isn’t housed in a grand eating corridor, as its older downtown location was, however continues to be churning out top-tier dim sum like pork buns and tender shrimp and chive dumplings. Then there’s Uncle Lou, which is lower than a 12 months outdated, however is already one thing of a Chinatown darling, leaning into old fashioned Cantonese eating. Pete Wells put collectively a really perfect menu in his March 2022 assessment, together with gained tons in chile oil, and a home-style seafood stir-fry.
In It for the Aesthetics
I’m not a foodie, I’m an artwork historian and artwork critic, or a connoisseur of magnificence. The place in Manhattan or close by are the eating places with lovely rooms — architecturally, furnishings, lighting, spaciousness, consolation. If they’re inexpensive, a lot the higher. If not, I’ll do an occasional splurge to have a night a deux in a superb setting. The view out any window will not be necessary; I wish to be ensconced in an exquisite environment. — Suzaan B.
I really like your unabashed dedication to magnificence. However that doesn’t imply it’s important to, as they are saying on “The Nice British Bake-Off,” sacrifice substance for fashion. The primary eating room that involves thoughts is the pure light-filled La Mercerie in Chinatown. Attempt a lunch of anchovies with vanilla butter and haricots verts in case you’re eating on a price range. Bar Tulix on Houston Road can also be simple on the eyes, with comfy cubicles and a sultry atmosphere. The spicy tuna tostaditos and masa-encrusted branzino tacos are to not be missed.
And although I haven’t had the chance to go to the lately opened Oiji Mi in Flatiron — from the workforce behind the Korean restaurant Oiji, which received two stars from Pete Wells in 2015 — the inside is outfitted in a beautiful combination of velvet, leather-based, wooden and glass.
In Different Information …
This week, Pete Wells awarded two stars to Saigon Social on the Decrease East Aspect, the place “a celebration of Vietnamese meals made the normal means” is on full show from the chef and proprietor Helen Nguyen.
Kossar’s Bagels & Bialy, the practically 90-year-old Decrease East Aspect fixture, will broaden its attain to Hudson Yards this week and the Higher East Aspect this fall, Florence Fabricant reviews.
Tejal Rao turned a highlight on the chef Wes Avila’s Offended Egret Dinette and its “fine-dining-quality substances, dealt with with care, however served with none of the related pretensions,” in Los Angeles’s Chinatown.
Our reporter Christina Morales took a deep dive into the world of gravestones etched with household recipes.