November 11, 2014

Lunch at Ah Ma Taiwanese Kitchen

I'll admit it, I don't eat a lot Taiwanese cooking. In fact, after the conversation we had at lunch, I don't even really know that much about Taiwan. That being said, I stopped in for lunch at Ah Ma Taiwanese Kitchen, the fairly new Taiwanese restaurant on Monroe in midtown. Ah Ma means grandmother in Taiwanese, and there is a nod here to simple, family recipes and street food of the common people. We sampled seven or eight dishes, and each was solid, if slightly understated in flavor and wows. The Lu Rou Fan bowl above  features slow-cooked pork, mushrooms, cilantro, and a soy-braised egg. A solid, seasonal fall dish to me, and a nice buy at $5.50.
Shrimp bao with remoulade and pickled vegetables was a standout. Hard to go wrong, though, with crunchy fried shrimp, pickled veggies, and a spicy remoulade.
Beef tongue bao was also a standout. The tongue was fall-apart tender in a rich, hoison-like sauce.
Slow cooked pork belly. I like my pork belly cooked to show a little more color, but this was fresh and tender and tasted like pork, in a good way.
Salt and pepper chicken. Eh. I was thinking about the chicken nuggets mu kids ate when they were young. Fun, but not enough salt or pepper to live up to the name.
Egg pancake roll. Tortilla wrapped around a soft scrambled egg, mushrooms, and cilantro, with a sweet-spicy dipping sauce. A fun bite. The nice thing about Ah Ma is that the small plates and baos, which make up most of the menu, are all fairly-priced in the $4-$7 range. This means means you can go with a couple people and devour a large sampling of the menu without breaking the bank. I enjoyed all of our bites, and will definitely be back for another visit to try the rest of the menu.

No comments:

Post a Comment