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Mandoo Bar (and Thai Korean food?)

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I stopped at Mandoo Bar (2 W 32nd) with a friend for a snack before our real dinner this evening. We had two kinds of dumplings (mandoo): very good fried meat and veggie dumplings, and outstanding juicy and vibrant steamed dumplings stuffed with tofu and kimchee, that were bursting with flavor to the point that my shirt is going to the dry cleaners tomorrow.

It is a sweet little place. One interesting feature are the Thai/korean dishes, which we did not have. There is a shrimp and lemon grass soup on the menu, and many people were ordering a dish that looked like Pad Thai and must have been a Korean interpretation. I have been hearing lots about Korean Chinese food -- how big of a pheonmenon is Korean/Thai?

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  1. although i have not been there in a long time, the pad thai noodles may have been what is known as jap chae, a korean glass noodle dish. as for the korean/thai fusion cooking, i don't think there is such a thing. not yet anyway.

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    1. re: bob

      I dug out the takeout menu that I had brought home, and much to my surprise, Pad Thai is listed as such, as is Tom Yum Koong (hot and sour shrimp soup with lemon grass).

      I know my pad thai from my japchae, and and what we saw on other tables was definitely the former -- it had an orange hue, noodles that were flat ribbons rather than spaghetti like cylinders, and it was topped with ground peanuts. There are a number of other noodle dishes on the menu that may be japchae, but they are listed in English on the takeout menu, so it is hard to say for sure.

      So, another Korean-based fusion is being born?

      1. re: Alan Divack

        I've been Mandoo Bar several times, and in addition to several hundred dumplings, have eaten the Pad Thai. It's quite good. Don't know about the fusion, but as long as their food is wonderful, I'll be there!

        FYI: they will sell you dumplings (frozen) to take home! They cook up pretty nicely, but I still prefer to go there.

        1. re: Alan Divack

          I haven't tried any of their Thai offerings yet, but my two favorite dishes are their moolmandoo (dumplings in soup/water) and kkomamandoo (little dumpling in soup/water). They are essentially the same dish, differing only in dumpling size. These dumplings are always moist and light. It's one of those things you could eat may orders of.

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        David PR Bailin

        Mandoo is a real find in Midtown. Good and cheap.