**For full post and pics**: http://www.lauhound.com/2010/12/new-j...
I generally think I’m pretty good at filtering restaurants. I’ve usually researched a restaurant enough to figure out whether there is a reasonable chance that it’s good or if it’s something like Chinese food where reviews can be unreliable you can usually scout it out to see if there are tell tale signs that could be good. In the case of New J&B there were a lot of signs that it should be good: hidden, crowded and not a single non-Chinese patron (nothing wrong with non-Chinese, but generally if I don’t see a lot of the given ethnicity in a restaurant I immediately get skeptical). Unfortunately, they all these signs were very wrong.
I noticed this place a while ago when it was called King’s Seafood (it is also called New J&B on the check). The state of dim sum in Manhattan is quite bad, so I’m always trying to find a new good dim sum restaurant. So my GF and I walked in on a Saturday around 11am to check it out.
New J&B located on the 2nd floor of a commercial building on East Broadway in Chinatown. When you walk in, it looks like a typical Chinese banquet hall. It was quite crowded and so I was hoping maybe I’d found a new gem. However, that was not the case.
Here’s what we got:
- Steamed Shrimp Rice Crepe (Ha Cheung Fan / Xia Chang Fen): This was the only dish that was even passable. It was okay, the rice noodle was a bit thicker than it should be, the shrimps were okay and the soy sauce was fine. It wasn’t terrible, but just okay. 3.2/5
- Steamed Shrimp Dumpling (Ha Gao / Xia Jiao): Wow, these were so bad. They were way oversteamed, so they all stuck to each other and paper at the bottom of the steamer, they’d completely fall apart by the time you got done un-sticking them from the paper and the other dumplings. The skins were really thick and gooey. The shrimp filling was bland and just generally mediocre. One of the worst renditions I’ve ever had. 1.75/5
- Pork and Thousand Year Egg Congee (Pi Dan Zhu Rou Zhou): I don’t normally get this at dim sum because I usually find congee at dim sum places tends to be sort of mediocre. However, we were sort of craving it so we tried it out. The congee was flavorless, there was barely any pork or thousand year egg in it and I think it had been sitting around too long because it was luke warm. Another bad dish. 2.5/5
- Zha Liang (Fried Crueller Wrapped in Rice Crepe): This is one of my favorite dim sum dishes. However, again it was a travesty here. The rice dough was too thick and had clearly been sitting around for a while as it was sort of cold and stiff. The fried crueller (you tiao) in the middle was mushy and had also been sitting around too long. We barely ate any of this. 2/5
- Clams in Black Bean Sauce (Dou Chi Jiang Ge Li): I really like clams in black bean sauce. In an attempt to salvage the meal, I went over to the station where they were cooking fresh food hoping that it would be better than the garbage we had eaten so far. However, this was probably the worst renditions of the dish I’ve ever had. The black bean sauce was a flavorless gloppy mess. The clams were overcooked and rubbery. This was awful. 1.75/5
This is my first really bad review I’ve written in a really long time. Oriental Garden served me one of my worst dim sum experiences ever and this was worse than that. I couldn’t believe that place had any patrons even places like Golden Unicorn which I do not like at all are better. I definitely recommend not going here.