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Apr 24, 2012 11:58 AM

yunnan food in LES soon?

so i read this article today that a yunnan restaurant called yunnan kitchen is opening up in the LES. I had heard about this a long time ago, but sounds like its coming soon

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  1. i'm really looking forward to this...Yunnan is one of my fav cuisines...

    3 Replies
    1. re: Simon

      i know very little about yunnan cuisine, ive only had a couple of dishes so it will be pretty interesting for me...its not common at all even in china / asia

      1. re: Lau

        i became a fan of the cuisine when living in Shanghai and Beijing it's become trendy and there are many places around the Houhai lake area (including one very grungey local one in the backstreets that was my gf's and my go-to spot for a quick tasty meal) -- in the Beijing places, i was usually the only Westerner and they seemed to be popular places for dates for young Chinese Shanghai it's also trendy, but more in places that cater to expats (i.e. Southern Barbarian)...

        1. re: Simon

          yah i didnt see any last time when i was in shanghai, but i also wasn't looking for it, so im sure its around

    2. Supposedly they were going to open the end of last month but, as is often the case, there've been delays. The owner is Yunnan (I think) though the chef isn't - some guy who used to work for Franny's in Brooklyn. Doesn't matter to me, personally, where the chef is from, though I know there are many on the boards overly concerned with "authenticity" (whatever that means) so we'll see what it'll be like. From what I've heard it'll have some similarities to Wong in philosophy - using local / seasonal produce, etc. I'm curious myself - Yunnan cuisine is something we just don't really have here (though didn't another Yunnan place open in Tribeca recently? Maybe it's the "next big thing" or something...) and from what I've read it sound pretty interesting. The only Chinese cuisine I know of that uses dairy/cheese, for one - both goat and cow milk, from one article I saw.

      5 Replies
      1. re: sgordon

        yah i agree with you re: chef

        i think re: authenticity - i dont think authenticity has to do with the chef's ethnicity but rather with the way the food is prepared. And the way the food is prepared has to do with the chef's training. i think usually getting good training in a given ethnicity's food involves getting tutored by those people at some point, which generally is why i think u see few non-Chinese cooking chinese food; of course that could change over time.

        i think u may have some advantage being of a given ethnicity if u grew up eating the food since u know what it's supposed to taste like, but that can be rectified pretty easily through experience.

        1. re: sgordon

          From a previous thread on Lotus Blue:

          Mongolians also feature dairy...

          1. re: scoopG

            yah although mongolia isn't part of china although i believe there are quite alot of mongolians in china

            1. re: Lau

              Inner Mongolia is! It is one of the Autonomous Regions. Remember, the Mongols captured Hangzhou, then the world's largest city in 1279. They were the first inner Asian, alien rulers to conquer all of China, establishing the Yuan Dynasty (1279-1368). I believe the "ur" sound- ending to many words in Beijing Mandarin is from the Mongolian influence...

              1. re: scoopG

                yah thats true

                although if u hear mongolian it sounds nothing like mandarin

        2. From twitter ‏ @YunnanKitchen

          "Hello World! Yunnan Kitchen opens tonight at 5:00! We are super excited to be here."

          10 Replies
          1. re: Riverman500

            ohhh may have to try this weekend

            1. re: Riverman500

              Walked by yesterday - prices are REALLY reasonable. Most of the menu under $10 (though who knows what the portion sizes are like... it might be kind of "small plates"-ish) - going to try it this week, though, when we get a chance...

                  1. re: Lau

                    Think we're going tonight... Will report back.

                    1. re: sgordon

                      And... underwhelmed. Feel compelled to give them another chance at some point, as they were very nice, and they're around the corner and trying. So I'm going to be gentle in my criticisms: bland, timid, underseasoned, monotextural. More than one dish made us think of take-out Buddha's Delight. Nearly every dish needed something to bring it to life - acid, salt, heat. Often all three. Portion sizes varied wildly, as well - prices only seem cheap, until you've ordered enough to make a meal. For $90 (two of us, including tip but no alcohol) I expected something more...

                      1. re: sgordon

                        wow no thanks. can't say i expected anything different

                          1. re: sgordon

                            Sorry to hear this...i almost went tonight myself, but i needed wine w/ my dinner tonight in a bad way, and their liquor license isn't operational til 3 or 4 weeks...

                            Will try it anyway at some point, w/ reduced expectations...