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Best Chinatown Restaurant Period.

If there was one restaurant you could eat at in Chinatown what would it be? Oriental Garden? Joe's Shanghai? New Green Bo? Let's hear it.

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  1. This is such a subjective question and so open for argument that folks are shying away from replying... but I'm a fool so I'll put my foot in it... In the 'arcade' or what others might call a passage way between Elizabeth Street and Bowery half a block below Canal is a long established restaurant called New Malaysia which sports some of the best eats in the area. Given the relationship between the southeast asian countries New Malaysia's menu is right on cue serving home cooking from Thailand to Southern China to of course Malaysia. Over 20 years of service to the community, highly regarded by those in the know yet undiscovered by loud mouthed foodies. Always packed with predominantly asian clientele but the wait is never over 5-10 minutes. We've quietly introduced over 50 people to this gem and they return again and again but luckily have kept it under their hats. The restaurants you name have sadly been overrun by blog saturated food groupies and all have suffered in one area or another. I shouldn't even be writing this!!! But the owner of New Malaysia, Andy, deserves all the business he can scoop up and no one will listen to me anyway because Zagats hasn't rated it and Julian Schnabel hasn't eaten there in his pajamas. Go scour the menu and have FUN.

    2 Replies
    1. re: jbwalker

      Obviously after reading this I just had to go there. I'm glad I did. I found a restaurant that's been around thirty years that I barely knew existed. It's not unknown though; it was packed, and the rule for Saturday appears to be go before 5:30 or wait in a long line. It's basically a Malayan Chinese restaurant. The menu is a lot like Nyonya's, with a few more Cantonese dishes. I ordered one of those, duck blood with preserved vegetables. The duck blood comes in solid slices that look and taste a lot like liver, but milder in flavor. The preserved vegetables were very good, they were made in house and didnt come out of a jar, as they do in too many places. I ate it all and loved it.

      No it's not the best restaurant in Chinatown. But if the Malayan side of the menu is as good as the duck blood, it should be mentioned whenever there's a discussion of best Malaysian.

      New Malaysia
      48 Bowery, New York, NY 10013

      1. re: Brian S

        I have also had a nice meal at New Malaysia. Not knowing what to order and being on my first trip to a Malaysian restaurant, I think, I ordered one of the Chinese dishes, as well as roti canai, etc. I'd like to go back and order something from the Malay side of the menu one of these days.

    2. My answer varies from month to month and it's not just that I'm fickle. Chefs leave and restaurants go downhill fast. Right now my favorites for Cantonese include Amazing 66 among others -- many others.

      Here's more info on the Chinatown scene:

        1. Wow this is so subjective and so generic...depends on your mood. Dumplings? Tong Shui? Cantonese? Mandarin? Fish Balls?

          If I had to pick, my favorite is Noodletown. But sometimes I get in that soup dumpling mode and really love the crab dumplings at Green Bo.

          1. New Green Bo has never let me down
            It's not absolute best in everything, but I've always had a great experience there

            1. Tough pick, but for an overall meal, I'd say Moonhouse. For the whole tour, I'd start at Sun Say Kai for pork buns, hit up Excellent Dumpling House for pork steamed dumplings, then Moonhouse for stringbeans and orange chicken. Then either back to SSK for a coconut bun or to the ice cream factory.

              1. Cantoon Garden since my wife loves the place and I want to keep her happy.

                1. like others have said, this is definitely a tricky question, especially since there are so many different cuisines in that area. plus are we talking mainly mandarin/shanghai side or sechuan side? for my two cents, i absolutely love the hand pulled noodles at super taste on eldridge and canal. their steamed meat dumplings are also some of the best i've ever had. period. hope this helps.