Fusia in NYC – 紐約市的昇Fusia餐廳

I have been missing Taiwan a whole lot recently, for its warmth, familiarity, comfort and a sense of self it evokes. I feel homesick although home is here in New York. To honor my sense of displacement, I will write this Fusia Asian Cuisine restaurant post in traditional Chinese and submit to the fact that this post will get no SEO ranking in English whatsoever. #HomeSick

Fusia 是一個位於曼哈頓市中心的亞洲餐廳。我和我的家人在聖誕節晚上去看百老匯音樂劇,Matilda, 以前去那裡吃晚餐的。那天真是很糟的一天,如果我能重新開始,我一定會改變我的做法,不去曼哈頓! 這一家餐廳是很中式的,客戶服務不頂好,讓我們坐在洗手間旁邊。 因為這是我第一次來這兒,看了一看,餐廳裡大部份都是美國華人還是亞裔美國人,大家都說英文,連餐廳的服務員也說英文。唉呀呀呀呀!真完蛋了!

所以我點了很美國式的菜希望他們能至少能煮美式的中餐。請下面看看。

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Grilled Tofu Skewers: Peanut sate sauce. 這盤豆腐是馬馬虎虎的。我真的是很想要吃台灣的臭豆腐。但因我在美國流浪二十九年,不長回家,我真需要好好學會忘記食物的記憶,不然眼淚就哭也哭不完。

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Thai Calamari: Sweet chili sauce,為什麼這是泰式的小管? 笑死人啊,這是炸得很懶的義大利式的小管。難吃難吃。也很醜,長的像洋蔥圈一樣。

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Miso Soup: Shiitake, seaweed, tofu, scallion。 普通,沒啥好喝。我家煮得比這兒好。香菇切得薄點兒。

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Singapore Noodle: Thin rice noodle, egg, celery, carrot, pepper, onion, bean sprouts, sesame in curry sauce. 新加坡炒米粉煮得很適合美國人口味,很美式。蝦子很多很大,讓妳覺得值得這個價錢。但是,因為他太美式了,很讓我想念台南的柦子米粉。去年暑假有po過,按這兒看。也讓我想起一位董阿姨煮給我們吃的台式米粉和大腸麵線,越想肚子越餓。

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Shrimp Wonton Broth Noodle:Thin egg noodle w. clear chicken broth, baby bokchoy, shiitake, enoki。這是我老公的菜,老公是我家的大廚師,所以我沒有問他的意見。 結婚這麼久了,他煮我吃,他點我吃, 我不批評!

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Chicken Lo Mein: Egg noodle, onion, cabbage, squash. 這個菜的唯一好處是它很大盤。大盤而已! 足以打包,下一頓再吃。但你真的想再吃這個油油的,滑滑的,少味的麵嗎?我可憐的小朋友喜歡這個菜,她是一半美式一半台式。她也喜歡台灣的肉燥麵。

這聖誕節晚餐是我這輩子最難過的一頓 :不只是因為菜難吃,是因為心情不好。  因為那是很痛苦的一天,不管是多好吃一定會感覺像在喝苦瓜湯一樣。Fusia餐廳是一間很美式的中國餐館,菜煮給美國人吃的。正式的中餐到法拉盛去吃吧。Fusia是沒什麼特別的。

This experience took place at

Fusia Aisan Cusine
677 Lexington Ave @ 57th St,
New York, NY 10022
(212) 308-2111

Yum Yum Noodle Bar in Kingston, NY – Surprisingly Slow Service

On my way up to Montreal, Canada, I stopped over at Kingston, NY for dinner. Yum Yum Noodle Bar did not show up when I googled Kingston but it was the only place bubbling with activities at 5:30pm on a Friday afternoon. It is an Asian Fusion type of place with a small college town vibe. The restaurant was filled with diners of all ages. I had high hopes for #noodles!

I apologize for all the red tinted photos below. We sat in a small alcove that is painted deep red with minimal lighting above the table. So please use your imagination.

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Fried Vegetarian Dumplings: Although we went at 5:30pm, the food took around 30-45 minutes to come because the kitchen had only one cook. To compensate for the long wait, this dish was on the house. It was too greasy though.

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Steamed pork buns & pickles: This was good! Two small open-faced buns with tender and well-seasoned pork that fall part easily. Tasted a bit authentically Asian.

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Bibimbap -Korean rice dish: I went for my usual when it comes to Korean. Yum Yum Noodle Bar, although appears to be Asian Fusion, it is really more Korean than Japanese, Chinese, or Thai. I decided to stick to the cuisine the restaurant leans towards to ensure best quality of the food. Plus the waitress told me so. The verdict? It was fine. Still bastardized but fine. My added protein of beef was grilled well. Not as good as what bulgogi would have been for this dish but good enough. This dish was especially tasty after the long wait and the suffering.

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This is the Make Your Own Noodle Bowl: we picked udon as the noodle, chicken broth as the soup base, and pork as the protein. Here is their explanation of the noodle options.

Ramen: Chinese style egg noodle
Rice: gluten-free rice flour noodle
Soba: buckwheat noodle (gluten)
Udon: thick wheat noodle

The pork was tender and delicious like the pork in the buns. But the combo left a lot to be desired. Instead of having the umami from a stewed broth with noodles like one would get from most street vendors in Asia, this bowl tasted like a combo of well-made components but lacked serious harmony with each other. The pork stood out. The udon was blend and too soft. The soup was ok. The nori was ok. But once you try to taste one ingredient with the other, you scream “Blah.” This is a perfect example of a bastardized version of Asian noodles. But in Kingston, I guess it is hip.

One interesting note, the Thai Ice Tea we ordered, although good in a weird way, we believe it was made with soy and not milk!!! It was gritty. Wish we had known. Sometimes too much of a good thing is just too much.

FYI – they have got a food truck for catering. Now, that is an idea.

This experience took place at

Yum Yum Noodle Bar
275 fair st • kingston, ny • 845.338.1400

Red Plum in Mamaroneck NY – Reliable Old Shoe Asian

Looking for a reliable Americanized Asian restaurant for lunch? Try Red Plum in Mamaroneck NY. The decor is modern; the menu is just like the other three Asian restaurants on the same street; the price is good for the wallet. Red Plum offers standard Fusion Asian or in Peilin Corbanese’ speak: Americanized Asian food / bastardized Asian food. I went today with a friend and we both ordered the Maki Lunch Special.  Upside: the green tea they served was pretty good!

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This photo is a bit fuzzy but shows the miso soup. It is ok – slightly better than the packet powder version.

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Here is the salad that comes with the lunch. Good for fiber and pedestrian for taste.

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Here are my two rolls: salmon avocado and eel cucumber. They are better than what I could do and decent for the price.

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Here are my friend’s rolls: salmon avocado and tempura roll.

The great thing about this place is that you can be loud and still hear your friend across from you. You can laugh your hearts out and no one would bug you. The waiters and waitresses leave you alone but are very attentive if you look their way. They know how to treat their customers.  The restaurant was not too busy nor too empty.  Just right for a quick get away from the office.

I had a great time with my friend whom I have not seen in over half a year and lunch was the side-show. I highly recommend the place if your primary purpose is not eating great Asian food but to enjoy the atmosphere and the company. Cheers to friendship!

This experience took place at

Red Plum
251 Mamaroneck Ave.
Mamaroneck, NY 10543
Tel: (914) 777-8696 | 777-6888

Seeking Plain Food in a Gourmet City

My zealousness during the first week in Taipei, Taiwan landed me with some digestive discomfort.  I felt bad enough that I stayed away from the spicy and the spices in the past few days.  I must say that seeking plain food in a city that is known for delicacies of all kinds was pretty challenging.  So you be the judge on how plain the foods are.

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Steamed white rice with scallops, seaweed, carrots, and green sprouts

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Steamed white rice with grilled eel, sweet sauce, sesame, seaweed and ginger

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White rice in a stone pot served with cod roe, tea, seaweed, and green scallion

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Udon noodles in dashi broth with seaweed and mashed daikon

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Chinese buns.  One of my least favorite foods but it is simple carbohydrate and very plain. I was on this plus black tea for two days!!  I did not bother to take a picture of the buns I ate.  The photo here is from http://www.25011963.com/product.cgi.  I am sure their buns are very delicious for other people.

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No fluff white rice with little fish on top.

Water Spinach, Pork Belly and Roasted Duck

Typhoon Matmo battered Taipei last night and this morning.  The wind howled and shook the windows.  The rain poured heavily.  Schools and most of the stores were closed for the day.  After everything was back to normal this afternoon, I ventured out and found this nice restaurant less than one block away from where I am staying this Summer.

昌鴻港式燒臘
地址:台北市大安區四維路170巷27號 電話:( 02 ) 2708-6786‧0968-647-768‧
It’s a Hong Kongese style restaurant where they serve mostly roasted meats such as pork, duck, chicken, sausages, and with lamb thrown in for good measures.  Lamb is usually not a part of the Hong Kongese cuisine.  Lamb is more popular in northern China.

Other than the meats, they stir fried a very mean and crunchy water spinach!  Although I enjoyed the roasted meat, the water spinach was my favorite dish of the night.

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This is pork belly with tofu and pickled vegetables.

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This is roasted duck.

Most Favorite Tonkatsu Place, 日式豬排

Purple and white rice. 紫米和越光米。When I asked the lady what 紫米 is because I simply repeated her pronunciation of the phrase without comprehending it, she looked at me stunned and said, “purple colored rice.” Felt illiterate.

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Tea to pour onto the purple rice, mixing in a sour plum and a small spoon full of wasabi into the saucy concoction.Tonkatsu is served on a hot plate of sizzling hot cabbage, garnished with shredded nori.  Miso soup with kombu and picked 小黃瓜 on the side to complete the ensemble.

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Picked dikon as an appetizer.

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Sesame seeds that you grind at the table to add to the Tonkatsu sauce.

This experience took place at the 九州杏子日式豬排日本餐廳 at 106, Section 3, Zhongxiao East Rd, 300號10樓, Taipei. 02 8772 9822

Fresh Air Market Goodness

They taste like they were caught this morning, cooked and then came to the market. Thick and long prawns, snails with garlic and chili, and fried squid.