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Apr 17, 2008 08:34 PM

Mei Lai Wah closed by DOH?!?

I just read the news on Eater that Mei Lai Wah was shuttered by the DOH.

Is it still closed? Anyone have any more info?

I LOVE their steamed pork buns and coconut buns. I will be so, so sad if this is the end of the line for this Chinatown institution. :(

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  1. This makes me sad, I just found out about Mei Lai Wah a month ago, and each time I went in they were out of steam pork buns. I would be very sad if I don't get a chance to eat their fabled pork buns.

    1 Reply

      dude that is one of the few places in chinatown that i think it really outstanding

      5 Replies
      1. re: Lau

        My sentiments exactly, Lau. I love the place, can't help it. Feels like home. Just a great place to kick back with a heart-pounding coffee, a coconut bun, a paper, and reflect on the world. Counting the ancient Nam Wah Tea Parlour on Doyers, MLW might be one of the last true blue tea houses we have left on these shores.

        If Mei Lei Wah is, indeed, shuttered for good - and something tells me this won't be the case - it would be the end of a 40 year business. They started up in '68.

        For the time being, I guess I could make due with Mee Sum on Pell, which I've always considered to be the bizarro world version of Mei Lei Wah, what with the counter being on the right as you go in, instead of the left.

        1. re: Polecat

          haha are the cha siu bao and coconut buns at mee sum on par with mei lai wah? mei lai wah really does make both of those very well

          1. re: Lau

            Sorry for the late reply.
            I honestly haven't been to Mee Sum enough to make a fair comparison. MLW always seems to tug away at my taste buds when it comes to buns and such. The few times I've been to Mee Sum, though, I've found certain items to be pretty good, others to have been behind glass for so long as to defy any thoughts of ingestion. When it comes to the old-style tea houses, though, I continue to root for every single one of them to hang in there for as long as possible. They're a dying breed around here, and who knows - as some posters below have suggested - what will succeed them?

            1. re: Polecat

              i actually tried it out the other day and put up a short review in this other post on pork buns, check the post:

          2. re: Polecat

            i didnt realize this was an old post ,, now im confused. this is the place i wanted to try,,, Lau just gave me the address. I guess they are open .

        2. we were there last weekend from Boston and my wife bought some baked and steamed siopao and some coconut buns.

          1 Reply
          1. re: openonymous

            yeah but the article is dated April 17th, so it mightve happened after. I'll check it out when I get back to NY although that wont be for a week, so im sure someone will beat me (and hopefully tell me its back running)

          2. I just phoned (from Tulsa) their number 226-9186 and, sadly, got a recording saying "the number you have called is not in service at this time."

            3 Replies
            1. re: Brian S

              Oh no! That does not sound good.

              For the past week I've been craving a pork bun, I almost went there for one last Tuesday, but I was short on time so I didn't. I hope that wasn't my last chance! :(

              1. re: Brian S

                Now I'm worried. I picked up some ultra-fresh pork and coconut buns just a couple of weeks ago to bring to a friend (ok, and I had some too). They were as good as ever and it looked like business as usual...

                1. re: vvvindaloo

                  I just called and let it ring about 20x. No answer whatsoever. I am going to tell myself that this is a good sign (better than the "not in service" recording). I don't want to despair just yet.

              2. I'll post later when I walk by after work.

                BTW, Hop Shing also makes great pork and coconut buns. They're on Chatham Sq, next to OTB.

                3 Replies
                1. re: kaya

                  So? Did you walk by? Is it closed? This would be sooooo disappointing. Inquiring minds need to know.

                  1. re: Edansan

                    I made my husband walk by on Friday night and it was still closed. I am still keeping my fingers crossed.