Game Point Cafe - Taiwanese
133-54 41 Ave in Flushing. On the way to the Shaolin Temple. It looks like they served Shabu Shabu in the winter(may still), including the spicy kind, and will be serving Shaved ice in the summer. They also serve some Taiwanese snacks. Nothing outrageous, a limited menu, but they seem very consciencious on what they do offer.
I was first impressed with their Dried bean curd, and smoked pigs tongue and duck neck. These are all common appetizers, but they cut it so perfectly(only when you order, not pre-cut), and the smoke flavor is outstanding. I found myself craving these stuff in the middle of the day. The dried bean curd is cooked in soy sauce to a rich dark brown brick, but when sliced you find that the inside is not tough nor too salty. This means that it's been cooked and dried properly.
I had a small order of beef noodle soup there. Unlike the sichuan beef noodle soup where there's a layer of red chili oil on top, this one had dark brown rich broth that didn't look too oily, nor spicy. Beware, though. Taste before you reach for the chili. There's finely chopped pickled mustard greens(there's that knife kung-fu again) and some scallion mixed into the broth. The noodles were a less common type, ones that looked like mini spaghetti, that took the flavor well.
I was most curious about the fact that for the first time, I didn't get any broth on my shirt. Could be that the bowl they used was deeper and not as wide, so that the noodles didn't fly around and splashed on the shirt, also so the temperature remained hot to the bottom of the bowl; they probably also cut the noodles to length so that it's easy to eat gracefully, and again less flying around. The ratio of broth to noodles is quite perfect so that you actually can finish the soup and the noodles at the same time. This is a often over-looked factor, but you suddenly realize it and appreciate it when it's done right.
I've had the grass jelly served hot here. For the brave only. It was quite herby, but good. On the counter they sell some cough drops made from Chinese herbs (the traditional loquat honey) that really helped sooth the thraot in this beautiful allergy season.
Game Point Cafe doesn't list Tso Tofu on their menu.
There are a couple of places in Flushing besides Laifood, Kushang, and Fortune Gourmet(last of which had just gone through a renovation and is now looking quite spiffy) that I have not tried but know that they serve Tso Tofu: One is Main Street Taiwanese Gourmet( I think that's the name) on 59-14 A Main Street, 718-886-8788. This one I think is a ways from the 7 train's Main street stop, though. The Chinese name is North Harbor(Bei3 Gang3) The other one is at 41-02 College Point Blvd. 718-321-7309. The Chinese name of the restaurant is called Shian1 Yuen2. This one I think is walkable from the 7 train.
Both of these are different from the first 3 I mentioned above in that they both offer dishes with "Pua Po Zi"(this is how it's said in Taiwanese) in them. While I've given up on ever finding the perfect Tso Tofu in the US, I'm now intrigued by the possibility of tasting Pua Po Zi like I did in Taiwan when I visit my relatives in the country/mountains. I don't even know what it's called in English. On the Main Street Taiwanese Gourmet's menu it's listed as "Putz".