|Gong Hei Fat Choy!|
|Peking Duck at Duck King, Edgewater, NJ.|
|Dim Sum at Jing Fong|
Trillen got in a bit of trouble for that, by the way. In his generation Chinese Restaurants were one of the few places where a Jew could exhibit racist behavior toward anybody: mocking the Chinese waiters or the names of food was part of the the spectacle. You sit there at a big round table nibbling on fried noodle sticks dipped in "duck sauce" that no self respecting Chinese person would ever eat with your uncles and cousins and anticipate the cringe as the bad jokes about sum dum goy take over the conversation. And no, we are not beyond that yet.
New Jersey, in particular, is a wasteland when it comes to Chinese food, odd given its proximity to New York City and the large amount of Chinese who reside in its suburbs. Chinese families drive over to New York when they want to shop or celebrate. NJ boasts great Korean and Japanese restaurants, but most of the Chinese ones are either Fukien-staffed take-outs serving disgusting gleet or Panda Palaces spooning out pre-frozen egg rolls and Sweet and Sour Pork to aging suburbanites who dine with forks and spoons. There are a few exceptions: we went for Chinese New Year to Duck King in Edgewater, NJ for Peking Duck. Duck King has an English menu and a separate Chinese, and also, this being New Years, offered multi course family banquet menus. It was packed with Chinese families, and the waiters were a bit overwrought with the New Year Crush, but it was a fine night out nonetheless.
|Mom and Dad out for Peking Duck|
We also met up with some Hungarian friends who were in NYC to perform with the Pinter Bela Company Theater at the Barishnikov Arts Center. Gabor and I go way back, and we took a long walk across southern Manhattan, crossing the Lower East Side into Chinatown and ending up in the West Village. For lunch we checked into the Jing Fong, an old school Cantonese dim sum palace we had previously always missed. It was a first experience of Dim Sum for the Hungarians, who left it to us to order and we stacked the table with dumplings, rice rolls, and shrimp from the carts.
|Eventually we took pity and got him a fork|
It seems that the savviest Chinese know to demand seating near the kitchen in order to get dibs on the good stuff as it comes out on the carts. By the time the carts get to the foreign devils seated at tables near the center of the room there is nothing left except the most well known dishes - shiu mai, spring rolls, and har gow shrimp. The place was, as the Evil Clown in the White House would say, HUGE. One of our friends got lost on the way back to the bathroom.
|The Shiu Mai are good, but the chicken feet at Jing Fong stand out.|