I'm systematically working my way through Chinatown, looking for the ultimate seafood soup. Today's adventure was the Excellent Dumpling House, on Lafayette, just south of Canal. I got there just before noon, and it was almost empty. But within 5 minutes it filled and filled and filled. All white people though, which is generally a bad sign in a Chinese joint. But this place was pretty good. I suspect that because it's "western friendly" and a stones throw from the 6 train, it gets a lot of non Asians.
I had the steamed pork dumplings and the seafood vegetable soup. Total cost: $11.90.
The dumplings were good. Served in an aluminum steamer, with a dish of soy, they went down easily. Although I don't like those plastic chop sticks; they're a bit slippery for me.
The soup wasn't too big, but had plenty of seafood and a lot of some sort of bok choy variant. The broth was good, not great.
Yesterday I went to Big Wing Wong. I ordered a plate of steamed vegetable dumplings and the seafood noodle soup with fun noodles (it's a broad noodle). The place was packed and I was the only white guy there. The dumplings were amazing ... I think they were drizzled with oyster sauce. I scooped them up and sucked them down, and would have been happy with another platter of them. The soup was fair; plenty of seafood, a huge bowl. But it needed some salt. I added a splash of soy, which gave me the salt, but changed the flavor too much. Total cost: $12
Tomorrow I have to go down to South Ferry and pick up my TWIC, so I'll wander through Chinatown on my way back. My target: the Big Wong restaurant. Maybe I'll get some congee.
update: Big Wong King was more or less exactly the same as Big Wing Wong. Dumplings were great, seafood noodle was fair. Had the fun mein noodles, which were like angel hair pasta, but otherwise it was identical to the Big Wing Wong bowl.
Plenty of spots on Mott street, though. I'll keep at it.