What do the Complex editors do when they're not serving you with endless hours of entertainment?
My Spot takes you inside some of their favorite destinations, both in the 'hood and around the globe.
Eating in Chinatown can be a little scary for the uninitiated (a.k.a. you white round-eyes). Greasy ducks hanging in windows, turtle soup, trays of chicken feet and frogs—it's like a horror movie. A delicious horror movie. No wonder most people stick to the old standard Westernized Chinese takeout menu. But fuck that bland chow mein—live a little, for Chrissakes! When Complex Photo Director Greg Garry (@GregGarry) decides to go from mild to wild in Little Italy, he hits up Nyonya, which, in his opinion, is New York's best Malaysian restaurant—nay, NYC's best restaurant, period...
It's actually on the edge of Little Italy, where Chinatown starts (most of Chinatown used to be Little Italy, which is now consigned to a bunch of crappy tourist restaurants on Mulberry Street.) And it used to be across the street in a more fun, kitschy space with carved bamboo and painted murals. You felt like you walked onto the set of Apocalypse Now, and expected to see Col. Kurtz slurping on a bowl of ramen. The space is now fancier and less special, but the menu remains as tasty as ever.
The food is kind of Chinese and Thai meets the spicier side of Indian. Every dish—and believe me, after living across the street for four years, I've eaten the entire menu, so I mean every dish—is dope and full of flavor. Also it always impresses friends I bring there, so it's a great place to pop by next time you're in Chinatown buying your girlfriend that fake Louis Vuitton purse. But vegetarians take note: this place is not for you. Most vegetable dishes here are doused in fish sauce or have bits of ground pork in them. You gotta love a place where pork is considered a spice!
WHAT TO EAT:
• Shrimp Puffs (pictured above). Shrimp, wrapped in bacon, and deep fried. You wrap anything in bacon, I'm down. Heartattack-a-licious! ($6.25)
• Seafood Tomyam Soup. Tomato lemongrass broth with cilantro and mixed seafood—guaranteed to kill any cold! ($7.50)
• Mango Shrimp. Fresh mango and shrimp in hot and sour sauce. Tastes like candy. ($13.95)
• Roti Canai (pictured above). Indian-style pan cooked bread with chicken curry sauce. ($3.50)
• Beef Rendang. Curried beef simmered with coconut, cinnamon, cloves. ($13.95)
• Steamed Sea Bass in House Special Sauce. My favorite, enough for two. (Market price)
• Cheng-lai Stingray. Stingray in lemongrass broth. Try if you're feeling ambitious, or if you want to avenge Steve Irwin's untimely death. (Market price)
199 Grand Street (between Mulberry and Mott)
(212) 334-3669 & (212) 334-6701
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