Lamb at Mr. K Chinese Restaurant. Lavish interior and pricey food that is less than satisfying.
Mr。K's Chinese Restaurant, 570 Lexington Ave at 51st Street.
I was not impressed at all.
Though the service was nice, and the wonderful staff spoke both English and Mandarin, the dish that I had was suspect from the beginning.
I ordered what is called Sichuan Goat (lamb in domestic us) or 四川羊肉, and the exact title on the menu if I remember correctly was Chuan La Yang Rou (川辣羊肉) though forgetting the English title.
As I ordered I was told "Oh...its very hot...". I also found out the owner is of Hunan origin. Hunan people know hot food.
My problem was that this dish had an inclusion of jalapeno. This inclusion disqualifies the dish as being that of Sichuan, and does change the dish entirely. The sauce or juice of the dish was halfway there, but for the price that such was not good enough.
The meat was alright, though I have had better yang rou 羊肉 or actual goat up further at Land Of Plenty. And at Land of Plenty 魚米子鄉 (yumizixiang). one is getting a more accurate example of hot Sichuan food.
The price was too much for this dish. 28.98 or there about, and when I ordered I thought that this was going to be good. I was wrong indeed.
One ought to consider the peppers used in Sichaun cuisine, and also that of Hunan cuisine, especially if one is the chef and the price is as high as it is. Jalapeno peppers are not a substitute for the peppers used in Sichuan cuisine, especially when one is buying supplies for a Chinese restaurant in NYC.
I could have found a better prepared dish of the same title in or around Canal or Division etc. for half the price.
Jonkyo, I know Johnny Kao, he is not Hunanese, he is Taiwanese. When I used to dine at Mr. K's quite a few of the waiters were from Taiwan as well. He's a very nice person and has spent time and money giving back to the community.
The decline of Mr. K has been depressing, 10+ years ago it was actually a very lovely restaurant and proper attention was paid to the food. They used to take polaroids if you had a special occasion and the desserts were fantastic. I had a strawberry and chocolate charlotte that was divine. The desserts were brought in from Payard. The quality of the ingredients were top notch. My only complaint was that many of the sauces were too sweet and too similar. Now the attention to sauces has plummeted. The desserts are no longer from Payard. The attentiveness of the waiters, once 3 michelin star is now 1. The upholstery is dated.
But regarding pricing, they would not be able to charge less, regardless of it being good or bad, the rent for their space is enormous.
My waiter told me that the owner had come from Hunan. He specifically told me that.
Not a big deal.
Of course that price aspect you mentioned is understandable.
If one would like to dine in that building, better to get a table, order booze, and call in an order of food from another restaurant having it delivered to the address of the restaurant. Jest.
Just had lunch there on Easter Sunday-beautiful place and great service-BUT the food sucked!!!!! I was so dissappointed-never been there before and never will again! We had several courses. Was treated there so I didn't complain to staff of my displeasure-had I been the host for my party-well enuf said!