6/25/2007

Tasty: Aromatic Beef

It is doubtful that New Yeah Shanghai Deluxe is the best Shanghainese restaurant in town. I'm sure there are pretty serious contenders out in Flushing, but as I am vehicle-less and generally without a hungry herd, it's not very practical to head that far out to try potentially heart-stopping delights. New Yeah is, however, my old standby whenever I'm in Chinatown, thanks to its wonderfully brothy soup dumplings, excellent scallion pancakes, consistently good meat dishes, and very funny interiors (sort of cave-like, sort of ... not). And, as RL and I noted tonight when we ducked in for our generally-monthly check-ins, New Yeah seems to be getting better. You can't do better on this stretch of Mott and Bayard, people. This time around RL and I decided to check out their aromatic beef appetizer, a dish that RL had tried before and had waxed rhapsodic about periodically in our email exchanges. Not knowing what I was in for (RL, in his rhapsodic waxing, had failed to actually describe aromatic beef qua aromatic beef), I was surprised when a smallish plate appeared at our table, with a fist-sized cut of beef sliced thinly across the bias. There was also a red-chili-and-vinegar-like dipping sauce with scallions nearby. I had no idea what was going on. And so...it's like this: have you ever had a nice beef brisket, or just a nice meat roast, and then couldn't finish it, and so you stuck it in the fridge and didn't think about it as you passed out from meat coma? And then maybe the next morning, as you're fishing around for the orange juice you see this tupperware container full of brisket and all you can do is dive right for it? And even before it's heated up, you take a generous swipe from the container of sliced meat and it's glorious and all you want for breakfast is brisket? New Yeah's aromatic beef is like that. Only better. It's like next-day brisket, straight from the fridge, full of that extra flavor, with none of the pesky crowds standing around the bbq pit (or the attendant hangovers), but with a spicy-tangy dipping sauce that kind of takes the beef to new places. And about that beef: the meat's got some nice marbling, with maybe some gingery/peppery component, and a wee bit of fat still attached for extra oomph. Seriously, as an appetizer to soup dumplings, you've kind of got a 1-2 punch made in food heaven. To boot: an entire meal for two (aromatic beef, two orders of soup dumplings, scallion pancakes, and crispy noodles with subgum) for barely $25. I expect to see our entire NYC-based readership there this summer.

1 comment:

more mad said...

ive been skipping the meat for awhile but i do miss the marbling...