July 6, 2016 / Leave a Comment
Flicking through the online offerings from the Momofuku stable, something about Momofuku Ssäm Bar’s menu stood out to me. I particularly liked the look of their brunch menu – baos, pork belly, duck…I’m sure you get the picture. What better way to start a sunny Saturday in NYC than indulge in some David Chang mastery?
Kicking things off in true heart-stopping style with some chicharron (yeah, that’s deep fried pork rinds) and a lager (it’s five o’clock somewhere right?), I’m starting to really hope my physician doesn’t read this website…
What I ordered:
CHICHARRON – togarashi, lime crema 7
STEAMED BUNS – pork belly, hoisin, cucumber, scallion 12
7 SPICE BRISKET BUNS – white bbq, red onion, iceberg 13
ROTISSERIE DUCK OVER RICE – duck scallion, ssäm jiang, crispy shallot, lettuce, pancake & pickle 21
JALAPENO BISCUIT – honey, nori 3
The chicharron were crunchy and tasty, though I think I prefer my pork rinds as crackling personally. Apparently chicharron is a very healthy snack though being high protein, low carb – well, as long as you’re living la vida low carb. Not sure the beer would also fall into that category, but a girl’s gotta do what a girl’s gotta do. Dip the in the lime crema and pour on the signature Ssäm sauce…seriously hard not to love. Speaking of the signature Ssäm sauce – oh my god, this stuff is amazing. Move over Sriracha, this is the stuff dreams are made of. Somehow I forgot to buy a bottle to take home when I left, and it haunts me daily. I must get my hands on some of this sweet and spicy special sauce!
The buns, or bao, are a specialty here, and both varieties were on the money. They come in servings of two per variety, however I asked really nicely and they were able to serve me one of each in the same order. These definitely have to go on the must order list at Momofuku Ssäm Bar.
The Rotisserie Duck Over Rice is a signature dish I was told, and after eating it I can see why. This dish packs in some serious bang for your buck and would certainly sate two diners. Served on a bed of rice, this dish contains duck two ways – beautifully succulent duck leg underneath, topped with the most insane duck breast. You’ll perhaps notice the texture doesn’t resemble any duck breast you’re used to seeing! They slow cook it on the rotisserie atop pork sausage, resulting in insanely good texture and juiciness (oh, some of that yummy pork sausage will arrive with it on your plate too – it doesn’t go to waste). Go for all the add ons – the chive pancake, lettuce and pickles – and you’ll then be able to make your own lettuce wraps and Peking Duck style creations. They provide sauces for you to play with including hoisin, so this was absolute heaven for a Peking Duck fan (me).
Given it’s tempting description and minuscule price, there’s no way I could pass up trying the Jalapeño Biscuit with Honey Nori Butter. This might have been the best three dollars I spent in New York. Let me tell you, this biscuit is no ordinary biscuit. It’s MIND BLOWING. It’s AMAZING. It’s THE BEST BISCUIT (that’s scone to you kiwis) I’VE EVER EATEN. Never have I tasted a texture so buttery, so crumbly…this is heaven, and I’m not even a carb lover. The honey nori butter was warm, sweet and gooey, a perfect accompaniment to this now legendary (in my books, anyway) biscuit. It broke my heart that I had very little stomach space to devote to this divine creation due to the day’s eating commitments…but I’ll not forget it any time soon. Fingers crossed I can dig up the recipe somewhere so I can taste this between NYC visits.
This casually cool outpost of David Chang’s empire really needs to go on your list if you’re planning on visiting NYC. It’s some of the best food in town at some of the best prices in town. Reservations are strongly recommended, these can be made through the Reserve app (you can pay through the app too and set your tipping percentage to make things easy). Use the code ‘XJVKA4’ to receive $5 off your first dining payment via the app!
Overall Rating: 8.5/10
Must Order Dishes: Rotisserie Duck Over Rice, Seaweed Biscuit
207 Second Avenue at 13th street
Mon – Fri |11:30 am – 3:30 pm
Sat – Sun | 11:30 am – 3:30 pm
Sun – Thu | 5 pm – midnight
Fri + Sat | 5 pm – 1 am