One warm, late summer night, there was an actual hawker outside of Hawkers, the new Southeast Asian street food eatery near Union Square. She was passing out menus from her stack to anyone who would take one, but no one was in the restaurant, and she seemed downhearted. The menu listed some of the greatest hits of Malaysian, Singaporean, and Thai snacks—satay, char kway teo, roti, and so on—but the red-walled, graffitied space looked forlorn and a little silly. That same week, I also got wind of Bai Cha, a new satay specialist and mini-market... More >>>