Chef Danny Bowien came on like a bushel of Sichuan peppercorns when he opened this East Coast counterpart to his popular San Francisco restaurant. In came James Beard Award nominations, glossy magazine profiles, and a shout-out as "the most exciting restaurant of the year," from New York Times restaurant critic Pete Wells. And by the crowds clamoring for a seat, you would think that New Yorkers had never eaten Chinese food before. (The wait has, many times, topped two hours. A few seats are made available for online reservations one week in advance, starting at 10am on the restaurant's website.)
Though the trappings are humble—a neon-washed façade with a takeout window in front; a cramped dining room with a red dragon costume stretched across the ceiling in back; beer served in plastic cups—Bowien's cooking is anything but modest. Traditional dishes, such as mapo tofu (bean curd and pork shoulder doused in fermented bean paste), challenge the mouth to a tug-of-war of heat, salt and clove. Fresh pea greens stewed in a bracing pumpkin and pepper broth is a startling take on a usually demure veggie. And try finding pig tails slicked with cola-barbecue sauce anywhere else. By the end of the meal, your tongue might be numb but your taste buds certainly will be broadened. But what's most novel about Mission's mission: They donate 75 cents from each entrée to the Food Bank for New York City.
F to Delancey; J, M, Z to Essex St.
What to tell a cabbie
Take me to Orchard St. between Rivington St. and Stanton St.
Where restaurant insiders are eating now
Just five or six years ago, the notion of great eating in Bushwick was a completely foreign one. In fact, for most New Yorkers, the notion of even visiting Bushwick was also foreign.Read more »
New York has plenty of the same chains you’d see in any other American metropolis.Read more »
There’s no question that New Yorkers are among the most savvy, sophisticated diners in the world.Read more »
It’s the time of year when NYC menus are awash with fall’s favorite gourd — from spiced lattes to hearty soups, pumpkin is everywhere. Add a new savory pie to the list — the West Village’s Pizzetteria Brunetti is jumping intoRead more »
We are currently searching our extensive restaurant listings.