Pacificana was introduced to us by friends one Sunday afternoon. Dimsum brunches are among my favorite things so I am always on the lookout for new places. We usually just make the trek to our favorite joint in the city (Golden Unicorn) since it’s logistically easier for us, but Pacificana now gives us a reason to make the trip to Brooklyn’s Chinatown in Sunset Park, usually followed by a shopping spree at Hong Kong Supermarket.
Our Vietnamese friend was on a mission during our trip to DC, and she would not be dissuaded. She loaded ice packs into the trunk in preparation for her haul, something I probably would have done if I believed a one-stop shop of Filipino goodies was in close proximity to a place we were visiting.
Eden Center is that kind of savior for the Vietnamese in Virginia. Housed in the rows of a beige and red strip mall were stores upon stores of freshly made delicacies and snacks, restaurants, salons and jewelry stores. We had lunch at Pho Xe Lua after which our friend went into a zone, raiding one store after the other for some treats you simply cannot find in New York.
Here are some photos of Eden Center’s treasures. Continue reading
Fantastic in the winter and great in the summer, Shabu-Tatsu is the only place we go for Shabu-Shabu in NYC, and is one of our few favorites for a hot and soupy meal. They have been around for over a decade and have never failed expectations.
|Prime rib beef, vegetables, tofu and shiitake after “swishing” in the hot broth.|
|The setup: a plate of prime rib slivers, and a hot pot with vegetables.|
“Hello, kamusta (how are you)? Long time, no see!” the old waiter at Nha Trang Restaurant on Baxter Street greeted us on entry.
He’s not Filipino but greets all Pinoys this way, and if you chat him up on why he knows how to say masarap (tasty), he will tell you that he lived in a Vietnamese refugee camp in the Philippines for quite a while. We’ve been coming to Nha Trang for over a decade and personal touches like this are hard to ignore.
That’s not to say the food doesn’t deserve credit. Other than Nicky’s, Nha Trang’s pho is among the tastiest we’ve found in the city, and the have perfected the use of half-cooked beef slices that melt in the mouth. Continue reading