New York City Chinatown
I finally got a chance to do my vlog in New York City. I started with my favorite place Chinatown, NY, not only that my relatives lived there a long time ago but the variety of foods for Sunday dinner was truly impressive.
There was a couple of places I wanted to go to and was determined to be a tourist to try the delicious food that made them famous.
The trip from Maryland to Chinatown was approximately 3 hours, straight on 95 to the Holland Tunnel. If you aren't used to New York City traffic, take a bus. It's crazy, merging, cutoffs, honking, pedestrians galore. Being an aggressive is the norm.
I had to double park in front of the hotel and they gave me directions to a sponsored garage that offers a discount. The front desk clerk said, you need to move the car before you get a ticket for double parking. I then got in the car and followed directions to the nearest garage. The garage was about 5 miles away. What the heck is going on here. The attendant gave me the receipt that required it to be stamped by the hotel. I never asked how much it would be but didn't think it was going to be expensive.
I walked back to the hotel, noticed that downtown changed dramatically. There were a lot more eating establishments catering to the residential condos and apartments converted from commercial office space.
My buddies met me at the hotel and we were starving. Our first volg would be visiting the famous Wo Hop, 17 Mott Street. They've been around for decades. What made them historically famous was they offered good food at a cheap price. So, if you guys are complaining about the portions we get from our neigh borhood take out place, you gotta come to Chinatown, NYC to see the difference in value. We ordered Lobster with lobster sauce, Wor Shu Opp (Fried boneless duck with a brown gravy, Salt & Pepper Squid, along with pan fried dumplings. I have to say the lobster was fabulous, the salt & pepper squid wasn't as crispy the way it should be, the dumplings were deep fried rather than pan fried and the Wor Shu Op was, it must have been a skinny duck. But my buddies loved the duck, dumpling and the salt & pepper squid. I couldn't help but place a heaping of the lobster sauce on a portion of rice, it was that good. My lobster was succulent, moist and so definitely fresh.
We went to Wo Hop at around 1:30 PM and left by 3:30 pm. When we paid and they don't accept credit cards, all cash, we walked up the stairs and there was a line forming. Unbelievable!
As we were walking on the main drag, Mott Street, a lot of the side streets were converted to outdoor eating with tables and chairs and waiter service.
The atmosphere was bustling with lots of tourist on a beautiful day.
Now our second place that we wanted to visit opened as a small coffee shop a very long time ago. Actually, it was dedicated to a famous Chinese actress. Their specialty was their roast pork buns either steamed or baked. They had the best! Well, since social media came into play, young people that went there out of curiosity, posted videos on tik tok and then all hell broke loose. As we approached the name of the place is Mei Lai Wah, there was a line out the door. Incredible, we waited, then this guy comes out and says, "If your paying ash, follow him" and we did. I ordered a dozen, and my buddies order like 2, 3 & 4. It just shows you how powerful social media can be with small business. If you have a delicious product, just give it time and someone will recognize you.
Roast Pork Bun called "Char Siu Bow" steamed or baked has diced roast pork with diced onions swimming in a semi sweet Asian barbeque sauce. Not too sweet and not too salty, just right.
We proceeded to walk along famous Canal Street, where hundreds of food vendors selling fruits and vegetables. A bargain can be had. There is a fruit called Rambuttan, sort of like a hairy lychee, delicious, fresh. Usually in an Asian market, this fruits sells for $ 7.99/lb but we saw $ 2.50/lb. Bargains to be had if you know your prices.
Walked back to the hotel 1/2 way and then took a taxi back the other half.
Chilled from all the eating we had. Tried the Char Siu Bow and it lived up to their reputation. I was stuffed.
Around 5:45 pm, we got ready to go for a celebration dinner at Wolfgang's Steakhouse on Park Ave. We heard about this place and their delicious steaks charcoal broiled. Now, I'm not a steak fan, more of a seafood lover but getting a good steak is hard to come by. Yes, you'll pay for a quality cut and I ordered a Ribeye steak medium rare. It came out perfectly, with cream of spinach and grilled asparagus. When I say the ribeye steak was huge, it was huge. Compared to what I got at a fancy restaurant in Middle River, MD, the same price but half the size and thickness.
For my 1st Vlog, it was a blast, so much food, enjoying the sites and sounds of the city. I do miss my home. So much has changed, miss the action, so many places to go and the food? what can I say. Except for Wolfgang's restaurant, no chain restaurants were visited.
Looking forward to going back to New York soon, maybe for the holidays.
I will be downloading my video soon.
Chef Woo Can
www.etsy.com/shop/creationsbywoo (holidays coming soon, purchase one of my products)
Amazon Books: Search: Chef Woo Can or The You Can Do IT Asian Cookbook.