Red Top Mountain Restaurant

Sunday’s are great days for dim sum. The sabbath, and food is religion after all. Headed to flushing for dim sum we collectively decided to try a new place, Red Top Mountain Restaurant. On entering RTMR you’ll be asked what type of tea you would like. This is nice, as you will typically get the same type of tea in most Chinese restaurants, which according to google is often a blend of popular teas. We ordered a fragrant tea, made of whole flowers. It was excellent, and accompanied the small dishes nicely.

We ordered right away as the first cart approached. I was in luck, a native speaker in with us, ordering was no trouble. The first round of dishes included two tripe plates, and shrimp shumai. Out of the three, the tripe marinated in some type of red pepper sauce was my favorite. I personally am not a huge fan of tripe, texture and preparation often the deterrent. I can say this is the best I’ve had it, and would go a step further and say you should try theirs.

As the carts circled we watched, and waited for our next selection. We eventually decided on pork buns, a classic, and these taro root cubes. Coming off a recent visit to Waikiki I wanted to try these, as taro root is featured heavily in Hawaiian cuisine. This was good, but the starchy components of this root vegetable was evident. Interestingly, there were other dishes with taro root on offer. I’m not sure if it was because they happened across a sale at the grocer, or its a staple of their restaurant, but I’m all for it.

More carts roll by, egg tarts, check. Can we have an order of congee, why not. Pigs feat stewed with too much ginger, we’ll take some. Finally, we couldn’t resist and ordered these buns that looked like panda bears. They had a peanut butter-esque filling, not bad, . Really enjoyed the experience here, and the ability to choose your tea only added to it.

Fu Run

I recently went out to Fu Run on a day off from work. I had wanted to try these lamb ribs I saw on the food network. Though this wasn’t the exact place I saw on the tube, you know “Queens borough be the back drop” and this place got pretty good reviews. So there I was, sitting across from the Bland Houses (a housing project in flushing) flipping through the Fu Run Menu.

Fu Run has a large menu, and a lot of offerings, I was surprised. Who knew you could order jelly fish so many ways. Beyond the less mainstream items, they have some more generic dishes, chicken and beef variations. We had come for the lamb ribs, one order of which you’ll find is plenty of food for two people, so we ordered these. These are really good, and I would definitely get them if you come. As you can see in the photo they have dry spices on the top. Piled high spices and fennel seeds pair perfectly with the lamb making happy patrons. These are really rich, so I would suggest getting a cola to wash them down. The only other item we ordered was a pancake filled with beef, fried, also good.

I enjoyed the food tremendously, or whatever. I would mention that the service was poor, it was the end of the lunch shift and I always cut wait staff slack, because I’ve been there. However, if your of some noble lineage and aren’t used to being ignored, I recommend staying home at the palace.

The Chairman

When I touched down in San Francisco I was starving. I didn’t know where I would end up, but I trusted the success rate would be high, considering all I had heard of the touted scene. On arriving to my hotel I was told I wouldn’t be able to check in until 3, so I set out for lunch.

Finding my self in the little Saigon neighborhood where I was staying was good. A quick tour around the avenues near my hotel and I had already eyed several packed venues. Still starving I decided I wanted something quick, so I walked into The Chairman.

The Chairman is a Chinese bun spot boasting many options, and some unique takes. You can get each option on steamed buns, or upgrade to a baked option with larger portion on a roll. I decided I wanted to try a few of the offerings, and I’m a sucker for steamed buns, so I went with three of these. I chose two pork and the one beef option, though they also have chicken and vegetarian to choose from as well.

The classic pork belly was enjoyable, garnished with pickled daikon, and glazed with red miso. Next was the short rib, braised with horseradish mayo and fennel slaw. This was great, but I liked the third bun a little more, and found it to be more filling. Coca-Cola braised pork, cabbage, mustered seed, and garlic mayo. All said and done an exceptional place for a quick bite.