Nom Wah Tea Parlor's Dim Sum Samplers, One of Our 100 Favorite Dishes
No. 12: Dim sum samplers from Nom Wah Tea Parlor (13 Doyers Street, 212-962-6047)
Call it "Dim Sum For Dummies."
In the years since Wilson Tang revitalized his family's venerable Doyers Street canteen, the restaurant has become a destination for quality dim sum served well into the evening. On its way to a century in business, Nom Wah may not best its brethren in architectural grandeur, but Chinatown's oldest restaurant delivers plenty of prestige on the plate. Devotees of the dining style might scoff at the idea of sampler platters, but the steamed and fried versions here offer comprehensive introductions to the kitchen's talents. Each platter features eight pieces of dim sum; the steamed sampler makes a satisfying meal for one, while the fried plate is best shared to avoid palate fatigue and actual fatigue. Among the best steamed items are slightly spongy, tightly-wrapped pork and shrimp shumai and puckered shrimp and snow pea leaf dumplings, the shape of which reminds us of baby birds craning their beaks to the sky for, in this case, a helping of sweet and tart vinegar. Once the fryer comes into play, it's easy to get lost in shatter crisp helpings of bean curd skin stuffed with shrimp and a beefed up egg roll sporting an almost beer batter-like textured crust. Giving the fried sampler a slight edge over its healthier competition is a crunchy, chewy sesame ball filled with nutty, sweet lotus paste. "All fried everything", might just be our new motto.
Later this year, we'll pen our Best of New York issue, our annual love letter to what's great in this town. When that paper hits the streets, you'll find our picks for the very best this city has to offer when it comes to dozens of cuisines, restaurants, dishes, and drinks. Until then, you can get a taste of our contenders as we count down, in no particular order, our 100 favorite dishes from around the boroughs, a list of laudable eats worth tracking down right now.
No. 100: Taqueria Lower East Side's carnitas No. 99: Tartine's steamed mussels No. 98: Malu's Cookie Monster ice cream No. 97: Coppelia's Havana salad No. 96: Falansai's clay pot catfish No. 95: Uncle Boons' Khao Soi Kaa Kai No. 94: ABC Cocina's salted caramel "impossible" flan No. 93: Shu Jiao Fu Zhou Cuisine's peanut noodles No. 92: Distilled's country-fried duck and waffles No. 91: Calliope's octopus salad No. 90: Charlie Bird's diver scallop crudo No. 89: Silver Moon Bakery's fig and pepper bread No. 88: Stage Restaurant's egg, cheese, and sausage on a roll No. 87: Manzanilla's Marbella's Full Moon No. 86: Bia's Cary Ga No. 85: La Newyorkina's pineapple jalapeño paleta No. 84: Empellón Taqueria's skirt steak tacos No. 83: Sugar Sweet Sunshine's pistachio cupcake No. 82: El Chivito d'Oro's skirt steak No. 81: Saro Bistro's satarash No. 80: Oda House's adjaruli khatchapuri No. 79: Hill Country Chicken's pie milkshake No. 78: Fletcher's Brooklyn Barbecue's chili mac No. 77: The Musket Room's steak and cheese pie No. 76: Battery Harris' Baked Patties No. 75: Legend's Dan Dan Noodles No. 74: Pure Thai's Nakorn-Patom duck noodles soup No. 73: Melt Bakery's Morticia No. 72: Calexico's Baja Fish Taco No. 71: Sushi Dojo's Omakase No. 70: Bear's smoked whitefish No. 69: Locanda Verde's corn ravioli No. 68: Ghenet's Ghenet Combination No. 67: Ample Hills Creamery's ice cream No. 66: Burger & Barrel's Burger No. 65: Radegast's Munich pretzel No. 64: Mighty Quinn's Burnt End Baked Beans No. 63: Cho Dang Gol's spicy galbi jjim No. 62: Tacos Mexico's chorizo taco No. 61: Pork Slope's loaded nachos No. 60: Pine Box Rock Shop's bloody mary No. 59: Franny's antipasto plate No. 58: Num Pang's curry red lentil soup No. 57: Khe-Yo's Jurgielewicz duck salad No. 56: Dough's doughnut (any doughnut) No. 55: King Noodle's ma po tofu fries No. 54: Terri's green power smoothie No. 53: Estela's beef tartare No. 52: Pho Grand's pork chop pho No. 51: Stella 34 Trattoria's chocolate gelato No. 50: RedFarm's spicy crispy beef No. 49: Bhojan's daal tadka No. 48: Pig and Khao's khao soi No. 47: The Grand's handmade pierogies No. 46: Dominick's Deli's Dante's Inferno No. 45: The Queens Kickshaw's deep-fried squash blossoms No. 44: Black Tree's squash blossom sandwich No. 43: Nan Xiang's xiao long bao No. 42: Jones Wood Foundry's bangers and mash No. 41: White Bear's wontons No. 40: The Harrison's toasted couscous and farro salad No. 39: Katja's sausage sampler No. 38: Magpies' strawberry-balsamic magpie No. 37: Bunker's pho ga No. 36: Fritzl's Lunch Box's burger No. 35: Biang's lotus root salad No. 34: BrisketTown's brisket No. 33: Bronx Ale House's alehouse nachos No. 32: Shinobi Ramen's mabo ramen No. 31: Pok Pok NY's papaya pok pok No. 30: Land of Plenty's Szechuan Pork Dumplings No. 29: Financier's pistachio macaron No. 28: Arancini Bros' Nutella arancini No. 27: Di Fara's calzone No. 26: Atera's bone marrow No. 25: The Mermaid Inn's brunch bread basket No. 24: Hospoda's fried cherries No. 23: Xe May's Lam'bretta No. 22: Meatballs Alsatian from Café Cluny No. 21: Café Ghia's biscuits and gravy No. 20: Espardeñas from Toro No. 19: Beef noodle soup from Lan Zhou No. 18: Soup and half roll combo from Luke's Lobster No. 17: Spicy pork quesadilla from La Pasadita No. 16: Pastrami sandwich from Loeser's Deli No. 15: wd~50's chilled egg drop soup No. 14: Taqueria Rancho Escondido's barbacoa tacos No. 13: Montmartre's pot-au-pho
Know a dish we shouldn't miss? E-mail us.
Get the Food & Drink Newsletter
Our weekly guide to New York dining includes food news and reviews, as well as dining events and interviews with chefs and restaurant owners.