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  • Post #31 - November 20th, 2011, 4:30 pm
    Post #31 - November 20th, 2011, 4:30 pm Post #31 - November 20th, 2011, 4:30 pm
    While looking for parking near Chao Thai, I spotted what looked like someone making dumplings in a window. On the walk from the car, we took a quick detour to check it out. Sure enough, there was a large window with a woman patiently making dumplings, and inside was a gentleman making hand-pulled noodles to order.

    Noodle man, noodle man
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    Beef noodle soup
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    The star of the show was the noodle themselves. Toothsome, if you will. The broth and meat were fine, but nothing to write home about.

    Noodles
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    Hiding behind this bowl of noodle soup, you can almost make out the tea eggs. I had never had these before, but rather enjoyed them. My dining companions, who grew up eating tea eggs, loved the texture, but thought the tea flavor was too mild.

    Pan-fried dumplings
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    Again, the starch stole the show. While thicker than I'd normally expect (or want), the dumpling skin was pleasantly chewy, with the fried side offering a great textural contrast. With splash of the house dumpling sauce, some chili oil, and a bit of black vinegar, these were a nice cheap treat.

    Vegetable dumplings
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    One of my dining companions doesn't eat meat, so I put in for an order of vegetarian dumplings. The filling was... boring. Not surprising, I suppose. Made-to-order though, with a really nice wrapper.

    Lao Kou Wei
    86-08 Whitney Ave
    Elmhurst, NY 11373
    (718) 639-1385

    -Dan
  • Post #32 - July 23rd, 2014, 5:44 pm
    Post #32 - July 23rd, 2014, 5:44 pm Post #32 - July 23rd, 2014, 5:44 pm
    After my recent trip to NYC, my favorite meal of the trip was easily at Biang!. It really blew me away, the one stop of the trip that I have been dreaming about since I got back. Only after I returned home did I look it up online and realize that it is owned by the same people who run Xi’an Famous Foods, which they described as “A finer Xi’an Famous Foods experience”.

    I ate at both places (the original Xi’an FF in the basement) and while many menu items overlap, I found the food at Biang to have a lot more character. The stuff from Biang in general had a more complex spicing, more szechuan peppercorn numbing spice, and richer sauce/broth. More importantly, there was no denying that the star of the show, the noodles, were different and more interesting at Biang. You can see the clear difference from the pictures. The noodles at Biang were thinner along the edges, and less uniform in shape. They also seemed firmer, very dumpling like in texture. To keep in line with their “finer” experience, they had restaurant (waiter) service, also the place was lit with dim tungsten, and furnished with dark wood and brick. Despite the elevated setting, prices were still dirt cheap, dishes ranging from $3 to $7 if I recall correctly. Every dish we ordered we loved and would order again. The lamb face salad was the only dish that wasn't even tried by everyone at the table, but read the description below and you'll see why.

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    Biang! Biang! Noodles

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    Biang! Biang! Noodles

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    Xi'an Famous food noodles (for comparison)

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    Fiddlehead fern salad This was excellent, spicy, crunchy, savory, crave worthy.

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    Lamb Skewers

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    Lamb face salad for the lover of all things nasty. "Cooked lamb cheeks, tongue, eyeballs, and palate meat served chilled with bean sprouts, cilantro, celery, scallion, cucumber; spiced with Szechuan pepper and proprietary spicy sauces"

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    Lamb face salad, eyeball close up

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    Lamb dumplings

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    interior

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    exterior


    Biang!
    41-10 Main St
    Queens, NY 11355
    Part of the secret of a success in life is to eat what you like and let the food fight it out inside.

    -Mark Twain
  • Post #33 - July 23rd, 2014, 8:15 pm
    Post #33 - July 23rd, 2014, 8:15 pm Post #33 - July 23rd, 2014, 8:15 pm
    Great find laikom! I was underwhelmed by my visit to Xi'an Famous Foods. Seems like Biang is doing it right. I hope it check it out soon.
  • Post #34 - July 24th, 2014, 3:14 pm
    Post #34 - July 24th, 2014, 3:14 pm Post #34 - July 24th, 2014, 3:14 pm
    that salad looks wild in the best kind of way
  • Post #35 - October 26th, 2015, 8:13 am
    Post #35 - October 26th, 2015, 8:13 am Post #35 - October 26th, 2015, 8:13 am
    trixie-pea wrote:We decided on Xi’an Famous Foods for some liang pi (cold skin noodles) and zi ran chao yang rou jia mo (spicy lamb pocket). Both of these items have been written about extensively. More hype realizing its potential.
    Image
    Liang pi
    ]

    Xi'an Famous Foods also has a number of Manhattan locations, I dined at the 34th street location on Sat night http://xianfoods.com/locations/

    Cumin lamb burger comprised of chopped lamb/spice in a chewy bun that was crisped on a flat top. At $3.50 it was certainly a tasty snack.

    Also tried the oxtails & hand ripped noodles. Mistakenly let myself be talked into the spicy category which IMO was just barely spicey. I think most LTHers would want the extra spicy. Oxtails had been held awhile so were not as succulent as they should be, noodles were divine. There are jars of chili oil, have to spot them, they aren't at every table/seat.
    I did absolutely nothing and it was everything I thought it could be.
  • Post #36 - October 27th, 2015, 12:11 pm
    Post #36 - October 27th, 2015, 12:11 pm Post #36 - October 27th, 2015, 12:11 pm
    trixie-pea wrote:We decided on Xi’an Famous Foods for some liang pi (cold skin noodles) and zi ran chao yang rou jia mo (spicy lamb pocket). Both of these items have been written about extensively. More hype realizing its potential.
    Image
    Liang pi

    Cold noodles that had a texture like I’ve never had—chewy, but not doughy. Firm, but absorbent. The sauce was spicy and sour and salty—the cucumber, bean sprouts and cilantro added an herbal freshness and crunch. And then the spongy tofu bits soaked up any excess juices as to not waste a single molecule of flavor. At this point, I was beyond full—and the lamb was so powerful that I just needed a bite or two to decide that it was indeed tasty, and would make an excellent addition to the noodles later as hotel room leftovers:
    ImageImage

    Grabbed dinner at Xi'an (34th St location) before theater this past Saturday night in Manhattan. http://xianfoods.com/locations/

    Cumin lamb "burger" was strips of lamb, good but bun suffered from being stiff/dry. I feel it had sat awhile.

    The oxtails w/hand ripped noodles was delicious.

    Timing is everything as we arrived just in time to have seats, not a large place.
    I did absolutely nothing and it was everything I thought it could be.
  • Post #37 - November 30th, 2016, 11:52 am
    Post #37 - November 30th, 2016, 11:52 am Post #37 - November 30th, 2016, 11:52 am
    Will be visiting daughters in Brooklyn over holiday and plan to tour Queens once or twice, specifically for chow. Was sorry to see that Biang! is gone from Queens, though may try Xi'an (a little unclear how these "sister restaurants" are related to one another). Open to any recent experiences you all may have had. Specifically interested in food types not available in Chicago (Portuguese, Samoan, Azorean, etc.)
    “Nobody exists on purpose. Nobody belongs anywhere. Everybody’s gonna die. Come watch TV?”
  • Post #38 - November 30th, 2016, 11:58 am
    Post #38 - November 30th, 2016, 11:58 am Post #38 - November 30th, 2016, 11:58 am
    David Hammond wrote:Will be visiting daughters in Brooklyn over holiday and plan to tour Queens once or twice, specifically for chow. Was sorry to see that Biang! is gone from Queens, though may try Xi'an (a little unclear how these "sister restaurants" are related to one another). Open to any recent experiences you all may have had. Specifically interested in food types not available in Chicago (Portuguese, Samoan, Azorean, etc.)


    How about Japanese/Jewish fusion (Oy, only in New York)? Check out Shalom Japan in Brooklyn. I found it to be really good.

    Shalom Japan
    310 S 4th St
    Brooklyn, NY 11211
    (718) 388-4012
    Steve Z.

    “Only the pure in heart can make a good soup.”
    ― Ludwig van Beethoven
  • Post #39 - November 30th, 2016, 1:01 pm
    Post #39 - November 30th, 2016, 1:01 pm Post #39 - November 30th, 2016, 1:01 pm
    Biang has relocated to the East Village and is as good as ever. I still love Xi'an Famous Foods; their expansion has really livened up dead zones like Midtown. Dumpling Galaxy is a newish place from the owner of Tianjin Dumplings -- prices are higher, but there is a greater variety of dumplings, and they are just as delicious. Fu Run does a great job with Northern Chinese (get the cumin fish or the lamb chops everyone else is getting). And don't miss the Ganesh Temple Canteen for excellent, dirt-cheap dosas in a cool setting -- the basement of an Indian temple. (Stick to dosas, especially the more unusual ones like the spicy paneer).
  • Post #40 - December 3rd, 2016, 6:39 pm
    Post #40 - December 3rd, 2016, 6:39 pm Post #40 - December 3rd, 2016, 6:39 pm
    Hammond, you want Portuguese? Come to Montréal!! We've got some absolutely *super* Portuguese restos, some of them with great grills for octopus, quail, chicken, etc.
    Lemme know when your visit is in the offing!

    Geo
    Sooo, you like wine and are looking for something good to read? Maybe *this* will do the trick! :)
  • Post #41 - March 21st, 2017, 2:56 pm
    Post #41 - March 21st, 2017, 2:56 pm Post #41 - March 21st, 2017, 2:56 pm
    cilantro wrote:Biang has relocated to the East Village and is as good as ever.

    Openings and Closings, Beyond Chicagoland edition: Biang closed a couple of days ago. The website promises many of the same dishes at the original location (now a branch of XFF), but this was a really convenient spot, dishing up great food, *way* underpriced for the neighborhood. A major loss.
  • Post #42 - March 31st, 2017, 2:08 pm
    Post #42 - March 31st, 2017, 2:08 pm Post #42 - March 31st, 2017, 2:08 pm
    Geo wrote:Hammond, you want Portuguese? Come to Montréal!! We've got some absolutely *super* Portuguese restos, some of them with great grills for octopus, quail, chicken, etc.
    Lemme know when your visit is in the offing!

    Geo

    There is a Portuguese neighborhood in downtown Toronto as well. Pretty authentic food but urban sprawl is creeping in and the number of storefronts and residences are dwindling. Can buy cheap tickets to the Azores or Portugal at the local travel agencies.
    What disease did cured ham actually have?
  • Post #43 - August 5th, 2018, 9:00 am
    Post #43 - August 5th, 2018, 9:00 am Post #43 - August 5th, 2018, 9:00 am
    trixie-pea wrote:Queens is definitely where it's at. Any Queens highlights from your recent trip worth noting? There we're definitely a ton of places that we didn't get to, that were on our list like Ben's Best Kosher Deli in Rego Park and Sripraphai.


    Ben's Best Deli is closing

    Sax described the deli business as based on expensive meats used to create labor intensive sandwiches with labor-intensive processes like smoking and curing. “Your main item you’re selling is losing you money or barely breaking even,” he told me.

    Ben’s Best was no tourist deli. “It was the neighborhood New York deli, and really the last of a dying breed. And it tasted great,” Sax told me, sounding genuinely sad. “And those are the kinds of places that in New York are few and far between.”

    Another day, another storied Jewish institution gone. What can the average eater do? Support small businesses. Take your loved one’s to Katz’s. Never forget that there once were more Jewish delis in New York than there were cold brew coffee shops. Eat your homemade pastrami on rye with vigor, gusto and tears for relish and as the Jews have done for thousands of years, carry on as best you can.

    Read more: https://forward.com/food/402883/bens-be ... wish-deli/
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast

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