Outdoor Dining at Golden Diner in Chinatown

Growing up, our family would have breakfast on the weekends at our local diner. Some days that was Carrow’s, other days it was Denny’s. And if Golden Diner, a restaurant in NYC Chinatown that makes diner dishes with an Asian twist, had been in our neighborhood, it would have definitely been a part of the rotation. It’s nice getting an egg sandwich in the morning, but it’s even better when it comes in a scallion bun.

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Wu’s Wonton King in Chinatown

Forget Thanksgiving turkey and Christmas ham. What you really want for the holidays is a family dinner at Wu’s Wonton King, a Cantonese restaurant deep in Chinatown. Not the Chinatown that’s near Canal Street and Lafayette, the one further east near East Broadway and Essex Street. You’ll see big family dinners in the works, sometimes three generations at a table, catching up over Peking duck and a bottle of wine. It’s also a popular place for birthday parties, because Wu’s Wonton King is byob, so people will bring their Veuve and a cake, no cutting fee involved. It doesn’t get any better than this, which is why Wu’s is my favorite Chinese restaurant in NYC and I’ve been here three times in the past month.

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Hop Kee in Chinatown

cantonese crab at hop kee

Hop Kee is one of those old school Chinatown restaurants that look like it hasn’t changed since the 70s. The fixtures are a little frayed from the years of wear and tear and the gray-haired staff looks like it hasn’t turned over since the day it first opened. The only thing that’s changed is the number of people who’ve stumbled upon this hole in the wall, including myself a few weeks ago.Read More

Tofu Tofu, Korean Restaurant in Chinatown

banchan at tofu tofu

It’s unheard of to see a traditional Korean restaurant operating in Manhattan outside of 32nd St, so imagine my surprise when I stumbled upon Tofu Tofu in Chinatown of all places. Not that taking the train up to Herald Square is all that inconvenient, but walking 10 minutes along Bowery to a Korean restaurant downtown has been the best thing ever. Of course, the meat here will not be on par with the bbq at a place like Kang Ho Dong Baekjong, but that’s ok. You come here because Tofu Tofu has a good selection of Korean favorites at very reasonable prices and it’s the only place downtown.Read More

Dim Sum at Rice and Gold

rice and gold in chinatown

Asian fusion of the recent kind, not the crab rangoons of yesteryear, reflects the trend of second generation Asian chefs reinterpreting traditional dishes by incorporating them with a multitude of multi-cultural flavors. They were just as at ease eating sisig at home and burgers at a takeout joint, so why not somehow mix the two together?¬†Dale Talde of Top Chef fame reimagines the dim sum experience in this manner at his new restaurant¬†Rice and Gold, located on the ground floor of Hotel 50 Bowery in Chinatown. The items on the dim sum cart might look familiar at first glance, but peel back the rice rolls and you’ll find bacon alongside lobster, and bite into that sesame ball to be surprised by a pb&j filling.Read More