Saturday, February 18, 2012

The Real Deal

This underground food court in Queens is no joke. I think it might be called Golden Mall. Brian's friend Ken, who is currently cooking at Northern Spy Co. in New York, knows the food scene. In particular, the chinese food scene. Most foodies know the food court that's inside the Flushing Mall but this one is completely different. There were no signs to the entrance, just a tiny non-discript door leads you down into the depths of it all.

It's bustling with the local Chinese. We did spot a few local officers, paramedics actually who have obviously made this their daily lunch spot. The food Ken explained it is actually Northern style, but with a twist. It's not even food you can really find in China. I guess the flavours are rooted in typical Northern Chinese cuisine but influenced by other styles too. There's about 10 or 12 stalls maybe in total, some hidden in small corners and others more open with food on display. We only had enough room in our stomachs to sample a few things, so I need to go back to try some of the spicy noodle dishes. We shared some pig ears and cucumber. Then some tofu and tripe combo. We ordered 2 kinds of dumplings, pork and lamb. I had never had lamb dumplings before. They were awesome. Steamed dumplings are among some of my favourite things in life. I got a private show from the hand pulled noodle guy (who then tried to pick me up ;) I guess they don't get too many blonde white girls down there.The hand pulled noodles are actually Lam Zhou, which they have another location in Chinatown back in the city. They also have the original location of Xian Famous Foods, who also specialize in hand-pulled noodles.

On our way out there was this amazing food stand which Ken told me had some of the best buns. I grabbed 2 different kinds, one with egg and scallion and the other with meat. Both insanely delicious. I plan to buy a bag next time and freeze them at home. I have no idea what the name of them are but they are cheap and I still dream of their taste.

After our very satisfying lunch we were off to Spa Castle, an awesome Korean Spa in Queens. We ran to catch the shuttle and spend the rest of the afternoon steaming and relaxing. It was a great day.

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