Dish of the Week: Potstickers, Lao Wang Noodle House

Why wait ’til Sunday to spread the good word? Nothing I knock back in the next 2 days could possibly touch these potstickers.
Though I’m a Chowhound forever, I gotta high-five the Yelpers here for giving Lao Wang Noodle House all the love it so deeply deserves, reserving special kudos for these babies. They’re all about their incredible wrappers: really, the pork is just there to slosh juice across the inside of the smooth, chewy dough, flavorful in & of itself with its darkly crunchy flat-bottom. Dipped into the killer house chili sauce, they slide down so easy the phrase “go like hotcakes” should officially be changed to “go like Lao Wang potstickers.” I hereby move that it be so.

Everything else pal K & I tried was equally winning, as ye shall see in the full review.

Dish of the Week: Roasted Cauliflower Salad, The Squeaky Bean

Fair or not, in the same way that I get a gigantic hitch in my getalong over menu misspellings (more on this to come anon), I nurse a nasty bias (like my pal MC Slim JB & others) against bad restaurant names. I don’t care what the justification is, the fact that it bears explaining in the 1st place is a sure sign of a misconceived moniker. In this case, the claim that the name “was inspired by garden-fresh green beans & the sound they make as they squeak on your teeth” doesn’t make The Squeaky Bean sound like any less a cross between a hippy-dippy veggie hut & a 1st grader’s fart joke.

However, the fact that it has fast become synonymous with excellent cooking at least ensures that you can get past your embarrassment just by stepping across the threshold. The moment you do, servers whizzing by with one gorgeous dish after another, you’ll know your fear that questionable taste in nomenclature might translate into questionable taste in the kitchen is wholly unfounded here.

The roasted cauliflower salad, for instance, is the very essence of exquisite taste.

Not only is it plated as artistically as a Kandinsky, but it’s a truly inspired combination: while the curry vinaigrette reflects the natural affinity between all those members of the crucifer family & the distinctive spice mix of the subcontinent, luscious chopped Medjool dates on the 1 hand & pungent smoked trout on the other, along with a squiggle of parsley coulis & a sprinkling of fresh tarragon, take that classic pairing to a whole new level. It’s bold & it’s beautiful, the epitome of a contemporary salad.

More on that score to follow.