August 02, 2009

Shanghai Mong

We stayed in the new Ace Hotel on 29th and Broadway for the second half of our NYC trip so as not to outlast our welcome with friends who kindly let us stay in their apartment for a few days. It's a rock-and-roll sort of place, but friendly, luxurious, and conveniently located.

Especially if you want Korean food. The K-town strip of 32nd St between 5th & 6th is stumbling distance away, and frankly it's about the only good food in the area. Since we were having lunch, and I needed to get back to work fairly promptly, we didn't go for the full-on charcoal bbq experience. I dug up this article, and when we saw jambong praised to the heavens, we were sold.

And Shanghai Mong delivers. There's a long menu of normal-sounding Chinese dishes, but I recommend you do as we did and most of the other diners were doing: get noodles.

The jambong is excellent, a rich buttery broth with lots of squid and miscellaneous sea creatures amid a tangle of onions and carrots, a handful of mixed mushrooms, and lots of good noodles. (Not quite up to the heavenly standards of Garden House, according to tallasiandude, but nom nevertheless.)

The jja jang myun was new to me, though I'd seen it in many restaurants and coveted it. The same noodles, but in a rich thick black bean sauce with chunks of potato and braised meat. Comfort food at its finest, and not spicy at all, for those of you who fear the monstrous redness of Korean dishes.

I got a split dish, with one side full of jambong and the other full of jja jang myun. Tallasiandude went with full-on jambong. The panchan are limited to just yellow daikon, some salty preserved radish, and an excellent, tangy kimchi that I suspect is either homemade or obtained from some badass maker in the city. We were in and out of there in an hour, stuffed to the eyeballs and happy as can be.

Posted by foodnerd at August 2, 2009 10:18 PM
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