I was fortunate enough to get to audition to host a new major network food show the other day. They asked me to bring in one of my favorite regional or ethnic foods and be ready to explain it. So I picked up a steamed pork bun from Mei Li Wah, which used to be a dim and dirty old school NY Chinatown coffee shop (see before and after pics here on SeriousEats). Once shut down by the Health Department, it’s now renovated, brightly-lit and clean.

Now the problem is that I ended up eating that steamed pork bun. So I ran around to find another over at Fay Da Bakery on Mott St. As a result, I was almost late to the audition and risked my future as a Food TV star. That’s like the time I missed my plane because I was trying to find Chick-fil-A at the Atlanta International Airport.

There’s quite a difference in appearance and taste in the pork buns from Mei Li Wah and Fay Da. The latter looks closer to the ones my aunts made when I was little. The filling is more red and sweeter than the Mei Li Wah buns. But as far as the texture of the (brown) pork meat, I can understand why Mei Li Wah is a favorite among many.

I think the audition went swell. I didn’t fuck it up by being too weird or anything and importantly I trusted in my hair.

Mei Li Wah – 64 Bayard St (btw Elizabeth St & Mott St) New York, NY 10013
Fay Da Bakery – 83 Mott St (btw Bayard St & Canal St) New York, NY 10013

About The Author

Jason Lam

Food blogger since 2008. Hair model since 2003.

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