Best lunch in Chinatown?
I'm starting grad school tomorrow and my campus is right next to Chinatown. Can anyone recommend some not-too-miss lunch spots? I like everything but am not confident that I can navigate the food scene in the neighborhood on my own. Tell me where to go and what to order! Thanks! Oh and yes, grad student = the cheaper the better :)
most restaurants in chinatown have lunch specials or rice plates. they're reasonably priced at $5-$7 per dish and feature a variety of good options from the menu. one of my favorite places is taiwan cafe on oxford street. you can choose 3 lunch specials from a list of 30 for a total of $18.95 and it includes soup of the day and steamed white rice
Bun Rieu at Xinh Xinh
House special Pork chop on rice special and Home style braised eggplant with basil at Taiwan Cafe
Roast duck rice at Wai Wai
Mee Siam, Prawn Mee and Beef Rendang Rice at Penang
Wonton noodles at Hong Kong Eatery
3 homestyle Chinese dishes with rice and soup for five bucks at Potluck Cafe
When you're looking for a lot of food on not much money, nothing beats Peach Farm's lunch specials. They are $5 and change and come with a soup (get the hot and sour, the best in C-town), a side, white or fried rice and the dish of your choice. They also have amazing seafood, which has been talk about on this board ad nauseum.
For rice plates, I prefer Wai Wai over Hong Kong Eatery or Vinh sun. I like their meat better. And their Scallion relish/sauce is amazing.
After (and only after) you've exhausted all your options you can check out potluck cafe. kind of like a buffet, you get rice and 3 choices (out of like 20). Somethings are good, some aren't, but there's some crazy choices in there.
I'll also Second Mei Sum. Best Banh Mi C-town. Also while you're there you can check out some of the other things they sell at the bakery (Pork Buns, Hot dog rolls, Pork Pie, etc.) They are all like $1! There are better bakeries too, like Eldo.
Banh Mi at Mei Sum; I've been having them pretty regularly lately, and each time I still marvel at what an amazing sandwich it is....and it costs $2.75!
Wonton noodle soup at Vinh Sun or Hong Kong Eatery.
Pho at Pho Hua or Xinh Xinh.
There's a long list of lunch specials at Taiwan Cafe. Try the beef with longhorn peppers (or watercress with sa cha sauce) or pork with bamboo. The pork chop rice plate is a yummy and very popular dish too.
if you like spicy, the lunch specials at New Shanghai (on Hudson near Kneeland), try the chicken w/ spicy capsicum (little green peppers, only slightly hot) or twice cooked pork belly (bacon-cut). (their cumin lamb w/ parsley is fantastic but more expensive) A combo plate at Hong Kong Eatery (on Harrison near Kneeland) e.g. rice or soup noodle topped with any 2 of crispy roast pig, roast duck, bbq pork or salted chicken, or one of their lunch rice plates e.g. spicy salt pork chop, beef short rib black pepper w/ string beans, chicken w/ salted fish and tofu. dimsum (rolling-cart style) at China Pearl (upstairs, on Tyler) or order off the dimsum menu at Winsor across the street.