Birthday dinner party in the private upstairs room at South China Garden (formerly known as Cantoon Garden). A big feast that had some throwbacks for me –the salty preserved fish had a strong flavor I recall as a child. I think my parents put it in my congee (juk). Carolyn thought it tasted like bleu cheese. Maybe I’m just thinking of buffalo wings. We all got little gifts from the hosts. Mine was a bottle of this liquid analgesic balm that’s used for sore muscles, but my parents used to put on my mosquito bites …You probably thought I was going to say butt. For dessert we had lotus paste buns (my childhood favorite) that were shaped like peaches. Some people thought they looked like another kind of peach.

Afterwards, we hit up Winnie’s Bar for karaoke. That’s where some of us were messing around with Chinese Hell Bank Notes. We got in trouble because it’s bad luck. To us it looked like Mike was putting Monopoly money down my shirt, but he was actually just wishing me death.

South China Garden Restaurant (Cantoon Garden) – 22 Elizabeth St (btwn Bayard & Canal St) New York, NY 10013
Winnie’s Bar – 104 Bayard St (btwn Baxter & Mulberry St) New York, NY 10013

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Jason Lam

Food blogger since 2008. Hair model since 2003.

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