Archives for February 2012

White on White Rice – Chicken Tender

xoxo Elvis


Korilla BBQ Truck

I finally tried the Korilla BBQ Truck. There was no line …well, I mean there was only 5 people vs a line down the block that I usually see if I pass by it.

The way you order is kind of like Chipotle. There’s a line of servers down the assembly line. You pick between tacos, burrito or rice bowl, but with Korean style meats. They even have salsa and cheese. Add kimchi and some veggies, then top it off with their specially made sauces.

Dang, this was so good. Really good. I got the Bulgogi Beef Bowl with everything ($8). The meat was super tender and they gave me a lot. You just can’t see in my photo, since it’s hidden under all that cheese. I thought I would need a knife for those big slices of beef, but I could easily bite it off.

The sauces are really good. I had them put on the Spicy Korilla sauce and the Smokey Mayo one. Hot, creamy and flavorful.

Now I understand why they have lines. Next time, I think I’ll forgo the cheese and the salsa. It just didn’t seem like a right match for my tastes. The salsa almost tasted like pineapple. Was there pineapple in there?

Korilla BBQ Food Truck – Manhattan, NY

Tio Wally Eats America: Family Buffet in Junction City

I’m happy to have Tio Wally (long-time Me So Hungry reader) aboard to send in his eating adventures from across America. Here he is in Junction City, Kansas.

Greetings from Junction City, Kansas
N 39° 01.270’ W 096° 49.125’ Elev. 1052 ft.

Just as people associate Maine with lobster, I associate Junction City, Kansas with …Egg Foo Yung. What?

The SS Me So Hungry pulls into this port irregularly, delivering “mechanically separated (turkey) meat” and then sailing away with various turkey-based luncheon meats, and delivering them to … wherever.

While there is another much better place to eat in Junction City — Napoli’s, an Italian place that I’ll review soon — none is more convenient land yacht-wise than Family Buffet. Wedged between a truck stop and a Merchant of Death (Wal•Mart), there’s parking galore. And it’s got a bit of the funky.

Parking the land yacht nearby can be really important sometimes. On one visit here the thermometer on the bridge read 114°. It was a blessing that the humidity that day was almost Arizona-esque, and the slog to the restaurant short enough to be bearable; an hour later the temperature had dropped to a balmy 94°.

Being as the Chinese community in Junction City — heck, all of Kansas — is somewhat small, I’m guessing Family Buffet is a family business.

There is an old man there, usually during the day, who I’m guessing is the family patriarch. He sits in a chair behind a wait station and just watches. Not with an authoritarian glare, in a keep-the-staff-in-line way, but rather, just hangin’. Every time I’ve passed him he’s spoken to me, a big smile on his face. I have no idea what he’s saying as I don’t speak Mandarin and he doesn’t speak Cantonese, which is okay because I don’t speak Cantonese either. So I just smile back and say “Hi” or whatever and he smiles and answers back in Chinese.

As you may have guessed my favorite thing here is the Egg Foo Yung. They simply have the best. It’s the fluffiest, tastiest I’ve ever had, made with peas, carrots, green onion, etc. It may be the best I’ve ever had. And the sauce is perfect, too; not too sweet, not too salty.

One day they ran out after I’d only had two. I kept getting up, checking the tray and, damn it, none had arrived. I even moved across the table to better spot the fresh stuff’s arrival. Seeing my obvious distress when I checked the tray thrice again, the old man sprang to his feet and, I guess, asked me what the problem was. I told him, in the nearest language I commanded to Mandarin Chinese (read: English), that there was no Egg Foo Yung. He then told me, I guess, that he was all over it, the smile never leaving his face.

He then disappeared through the kitchen doors and it sounded like all hell broke loose. (Of course, normal discourse in Chinese always sounds like all hell has broken loose to my ear.) Long story short, he appeared with a fresh tray of Egg Foo Yung a few minutes later, beckoning me over for first grabs. Score.

They have scores of items on the buffet from Chinese to vegetable sushi to pizza and a full salad bar. Most of the Chinese fare, however, is very chicken-centric, which bums me out; it makes it hard for me to realize my dream of an all-pork diet. They must have 25 different chicken based dishes. Geesh. I want my pork. Nevertheless, the chicken stuff is very varied and, well, it’s all pretty good.

They also always have fried butterfly shrimp and, at night anyway, peel-and-eat shrimp as well. I don’t usually have the peel-and-eat though; that peeling crap is too much work and it interferes with my reading.

I also really enjoy their hot-and-sour soup. It’s not corn-starched out, i.e. thickened to complete coagulation. I usually throw in a couple of wontons from the wonton soup kettle for good measure.

And a real treat is that they’ve got eight-or-so different flavors of self-dipped hard ice cream!

They’re really nice folks at Family Buffet. Every time I’ve been there the service has been great, the food is decent enough and, hell, I can park the land yacht within a stone’s throw.

And so we roll.

Family Buffet, 801 E. Chestnut St., Junction City, Kansas

Tio Wally pilots the 75-foot, 40-ton(max) land yacht SS Me So Hungry. He reports on road food from around the country whenever parking and InterTube connections permit.

Shake Shack’s Jeremy Lin-Mint Shake

Shake Shack is having a Jeremy Lin inspired shake for a limited time. It’s Chocolate Chip Mint Cookie milkshake ($5.75).

Sam brought one back to the office and let me taste. Super thick. It was good. I wonder if that’s what Jeremy Lin tastes like.

I love cookie dough in ice cream. Now I wonder what Fortune Cookie dough or Almond Cookie dough would taste like in ice cream. Maybe that would be racist, but it more sense, right?

Shake Shack – Madison Square Park. E 23rd St & Madison Ave. New York, NY 10010

Ben’s Hook, Line & Dinner Season 2 Tonight

Last year, we went to Red Lobster and Ben brought a frickin huge live lobster with him. That was the craziest time I’ve had in Time Square.

His show is back on the Cooking Channel tonight for Season 2 –Hook, Line & Dinner. Last year was really good and I got really hungry.

Williams & Bailey’s Chicken & Waffle

Sam and I went to this bar nearby, Williams & Bailey, to watch Jeremy Lin and the Knicks on Valentine’s Day the other night. A couple of HDTV screens, happy hour and bar food. Right on.

I got the Buttermilk Fried Chicken and Waffles ($10). Pretty good. The onion gravy was like homemade style using grease and flour. It went really nice when mixing it all up with the syrup.

Sam got the Spinach Artichoke Dip. Cheesy and stringy. We both got caught on the same piece of stringy cheese. It was almost like Lady & the Tramp with the spaghetti noodle.

They also had a 3 Tacos for $5 during happy hour deal. Maybe Taco Tuesdays. Looked like a good deal. The happy hour was also $3 drafts and wells until 8. There’s also a $3 cheap beer draft all the time.

When I came back from the restroom, Sam had already paid. The bartender probably thought we were on a Valentine’s date.

Williams & Bailey – 507 Grand St (btwn Union Ave & Lorimer) Brooklyn, NY 11211

Exciting basketball game. Jeremy Lin blew it up at the end. Sam and I knew it was Tebow time when it got down to it. I feel like I’m in Linbow. Me So Hungry, time for Linner. Shaqueef O’Neil. I told the bartender that we were rooting for the Asian guy. She probably already knew that.

On another note, I think I created Jeremy Lin in NBA 2K1 over 10 years ago. I plugged in my old Sega Dreamcast to check. I think he came out of the video game like Mannequin. I’m like a young Anthony Michael Hall.

Tio Wally Eats America: Good Wil’s Restaurant, Bakery & Creamery

I’m happy to have Tio Wally (long-time Me So Hungry reader) aboard to send in his eating adventures from across America. Here he is in Milton, Pennsylvania.

Greetings from Milton, Pennsylvania
N 40° 57.850’  W 076° 50.540’  Elev. 485 ft.

Ah, Pennsylvania. Home of the Liberty Bell, which, by the way, is cracked not because it was fervently rung to celebrate “freedom” but, rather, was a flawed cast, defective. So much for iconic bells. And so was my meal at Good Wil’s Restaurant, Bakery & Creamery in Milton. Flawed and mostly defective.

At Good Wil’s I ordered, with bated breath, a Ham Pot Pie. It was on the menu, printed right there for all to read. A regular menu item! It’s got to be good. I was excited: This is going to be great! After all, What is a pot pie? It’s a pie: crust top and bottom and filled with … whatever. Well, not so much at Good Wil’s. Actually, not at all.

At Good Wil’s I was served a bowl of gummy, grammar school paste-worthy pieces of … crap, with a little bland (boiled?) ham thrown in to break up the visual desert of the tasteless bowl of muck. I’d seen these rubbery, gummy squares of “noodles” elsewhere but they were always pawned off as “dumplings”, which they also are not. Noodles are noodles, dumplings are dumplings, and dumplings are never square. Flat is impossible in the dumpling world, just as crust is a must for pies. Suffice to say, it was not a pot pie, much less a “ham” pot pie.

I was told later that the pile of paste masquerading as pot pie is a Dutch thing. Fine. But where’s the pie? Why in the hell are they calling it a “pie” when there is no pie? This is wrong, wrong, wrong. Sinfully wrong.

Rather than bitch more, I’ll say this: The Ham Pot Pie at Good Wil’s would make for a great source of glue for any five-year-old’s arts-and-crafts project; any self-respecting 8-year-old would reject it as an unsuitable adhesive posthaste. Other than the fact that it was so bland, so completely devoid of flavor that even a Chrysler Building-size pepper mill couldn’t redeem it, it wasn’t completely inedible. But I say that only because I was starving, and … it came with two sides.

I chose Baked Lima Beans and Harvard Beets as my sides. The baked lima beans were another Dutch treat (read: surprise). I thought they’d be oven-baked or something unusual. No. They were baked as in “baked beans.” They were okay but, sheesh, what a waste of perfectly good lima beans.

The “Harvard” Beets, however, were awesome. They serve beets warm in the Northeast — I don’t know why — and I love ‘em. I have a thing about certain foods and beets are one of them. There simply is no way to prepare beets incorrectly. (I’ve thought about frying them.) Serve them warm, cold, call them “Harvard” or “Yale”, it doesn’t matter: They’re beets,which can’t be beat! No wrong can possibly be done.

But the real redeemer of my visit to Good Wil’s was this: I was walking back from the restroom and noticed, in the pie case, a little sign that read: Rice Pudding $1.99. The rice pudding appeared to be in giant sundae cups. I figured it was some mistake. But no.

Rice pudding is hard to find. Homemade rice pudding is nonexistent. You never see it. Moreover, I had a choice: with or without raisins. I went with the raisins. It came generously topped with whipped cream and a sprinkle of cinnamon, and was truly awesome. Heck, it almost made up for the fact that I was sold a phony Ham Pot Pie with little ham, no crust, but plenty of paste. Almost.

And so we roll.

Good Wil’s Restaurant, Bakery & Creamery, 24 Weavers Lane, Milton, Pennsylvania

Tio Wally pilots the 75-foot, 40-ton(max) land yacht SS Me So Hungry. He reports on road food from around the country whenever parking and InterTube connections permit.

HIT Deli & Korean Food

This tiny deli is inside a building. I guess most are in New York, but I mean you have to go inside the building and down a hall to get to it. The thing that interests me is that they have Korean food. So I gave it a try.

I got the most expensive meal – Bulgogi Deopbap Beef Box $12. The other Korean boxes are cheaper at around $9. It came in a hefty platter sectioned off neatly –with potatoes, cellophane noodles, salad, rice and the Korean sliced marinated beef.

The food was alright. Looked pretty, but didn’t impress me. It got me stuffed though. The soup was too salty, but I’m not sure if it’s one of those things that you pour over the rice? I don’t know. That makes more sense.

The people were nice in there. They seem to have regulars like this old guy who apparently gets coffee all the time. In my photo, it looks like he doesn’t have a head. No photoshop.

HIT Deli & Korean Food – 150 W 28th St (btwn 6th & 7th Ave) New York, NY 10001