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豫園小籠包, You Garden Xiaolongbao, Flushing, NYC September 29, 2017

Posted by hslu in Chinese Food, 美國, Restaurants, Travel.
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We flew from Linkou, Taiwan to NYC to visit our daughter and son-in-law and our son and daughter-in-law in late July, 2017. Our daughter-in-law was expecting her first child in early August and our granddaughter, Claire, 浩梅, our first, was born on August 12, 2017. 

In the following three weeks, our lives revolved around the baby and we tried to help the young father and mother as much as we could. In our spare time, we explored around Manhattan and Queens looking for good restaurants to try and good food to eat.

In early September, we rented a car from the JFK Airport and drove to Virginia to visit my siblings. After a short and busy four days in northern Virginia, we drove back to NYC and stayed in a hotel in Flushing for five days before flying back to Taiwan in mid-September, 2017.

While in Flushing, we walked around looking for restaurants to try because parking was problematic at times. 

We’ve tried food court but we didn’t like there. We’ve tried 南翔小籠包 which we like a lot. But, the one we liked the most, as far as Shanghai and/or Jiangzhe cuisine is concern, is 豫園小籠包, You Garden Dumpling House, on 40 Road. 

In fact, we liked it so much the first time, we came back the next day for lunch because there were a few dishes we just had to try before flying back to Taiwan.

Unique design of the dinning room ceiling shows the classic side of the owner. 

The Chinese writing was a poem by 張若虛  from the Tang dynasty and the name of the poem is 春江花月夜. This is how this poem begins: 春江潮水連海平,海上明月共潮生。灧灩隨波千萬里,何處春江無月明? So beautiful.

Not too nusy at 7:30 pm on a Tuesday night.

大補。

差不多有十種小菜。

真正的大湯包。

雞絲兩面黃。好吃。

特棒。醬牛肉蔥餅。

小籠包。不比鼎泰豐的差。個個抬頭挺胸。沒有一個是趴下去的。

都是湯汁。

素蒸餃。正統。

鹹豆花。頭一天晚上看到隔壁點這個菜,我們第二天中午特地來嘗一嘗。好嫩。好吃。比鹹豆漿好。

素雞是紅糟味,我不太喜歡。

韭菜盒子。

忘了告訴你。小籠包是餐館送的。每一桌都有。所以不要點小籠包。

八(除以二)寶飯。好吃。雖然只有四寶。糖漿真好。有些人吃八寶飯,怕糖太多。我則相反:叫八寶飯就不要怕糖多。就跟吃pancake一樣,maple syrup 一定要從 pancake 的四邊流下來,才行。不然別叫。吃兔子菜算了。不過八寶就該八寶。不然在菜單上寫四寶飯。

下次去再來。

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Pokespot, Manhattan, NYC September 22, 2017

Posted by hslu in 美國, Food, Restaurants, Small Business.
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We came to New York City to see our first grand child: 浩梅, who was born on 8/12/2017. We have been to New York more than a dozen times since 2000 and have enjoyed a diverse collections of food from different regions of the world every time we were here. 

This time we had “poke” for the first time and we liked it a lot. It was health, refreshing, appertizing, flavorful and simple to make. After we had it, we found out that New York has probably hundreds of poke restaurants in Manhattan, Queens and Brooklyn. Prices varied from $9 in Queens to $13 in Manhattan.

Poke is a bowl of warm rice topped with cold raw fish, fruits, vegetables, nuts and toppings such as seaweed salad, sesame seeds, dry fish flakes, Japanese spices and/or aioli. Chicken and tofu are other options if you don’t like seafood. Crab meat and ells are more expansive versions of poke.

So, take your picks and enjoy. You miggt want to open one at places frequented by young men and women. A small glass of cold sake or Korean rice wine goes very well with any poke. You don’t need big space to ooen one: 800 sq ft should be big enough to start with. Keep it clean, bright, colorful, and pleasant. Hire high school kids and pay them 10% higher than minimum wage will get you started. Sell ice cream in a cone for 50 ¢ each will not only pay for the rental of the ice cream machine but also add enough revenue to help pay for the overhead too. No need of expensive kitchen equipment or exhaust fan for woks. Keep the initial investment low so that it is easier to survive the start up period.

紐約的街頭浪人 August 27, 2017

Posted by hslu in 美國, Travel.
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紐約街頭有許多流浪人;有男的,有女的,有老的,有年輕的。不過我還沒有見過跟著大人一起流浪的小孩子。

黑人,白人特別多,倒是看不到什麼東方人或西班牙血統的墨西哥或中美洲人。

有不少年輕 (看起來只有二,三,四十來歲的樣子) 的白人都是兩,三個人一起,成群結隊的一同流浪。他們自己可能吃不飽飯卻還帶著狗兒一起流浪。這些人據集在飯堂開的晚的地方。那兒人多,東西比較便宜。幾個人坐在地上,擺上一個紙牌子,上面寫一些阿富汗當兵回來,無一技之長,沒有工作,或是經濟潦倒,卻志氣高昂的字句。請大家發發慈心做個好事,資助他們買一點吃的。有時候,買一些便宜的 pizza 或簡單的街食,有時候還弄些啤酒,大家在一起抽大麻, party 一番。路過的白人也會停下來跟他們聊聊天,給幾個零錢,買些東西給他們吃,給他們打打氣。這些人晚上睡那裏,我就不知道了。

紐約市東村 St. Marks (八街) 路上有人留了一盒 pizza。有人不客氣的自己幫助自己,吃起來了。

他只有二十幾歲。阿富汗打仗回來的。

兩片pizza,一罐 coke,$2.99。沒有比這個更便宜的了。

黑人則落單的多。他們不和白人一起。這些人自己在街頭佔據一個角落,舖著一床破爛骯髒的被子在地上,自己的家當就放在一個菜市場的推車裏,或是幾個黑顏色的塑膠袋裏。這就是他們的家。不論白天還是晚上,他們

這是一個白女人。這是最精彩的了。大白天,大大方方的打起地鋪,睡覺了。

在紐約常常見到的街景。

他大大方方的問我和其他路人,有沒有零錢可以給他。

這在紐約的第五大道上。大白天。

不知道他們兩個是累了臨時在這裏休息一下,還是流浪到這裏。

年輕的白人結隊走天涯的樣子。這裏是他們喜歡聚集的地方。離他們80尺的地方有一家 Pizza 店有 $0.99 一片的 pizza.很便宜.

紐約市14街 Union Square 附近。

紐約市政府或紐約的警察對這些人好像是採取不理不睬的態度。也從不見警察取締他們,可能是因為他們實在是無家可歸,警察把他們從這裏趕走,他們還是會在另外一個地方打地鋪。夏天不冷還好。冬天紐約下雪,平常都是零下的溫度。這些人也沒地方去。這些人除了坐在地上被動的求路人伸出救援之手以外,並不會對你有什麼不好的行動。可是,紐約仍然有主動走到你身邊,向你搭訕,跟你說話,伸手找你要錢的。有些人還會走到停在路上等紅燈的車子邊上,問車裏的人有沒有錢可以給他的乞丐。

他是要錢的。

這是社會貧富不均的問題,是資本主義走道末路無法避免的問題。紐約的億萬富翁是世界最多的。紐約曼哈頓任何一個五,六層高的小高樓都是幾百萬一棟。高高的大樓,更是千萬以上。像樣一點,比較新的大樓,七,八百多平方英尺的一房公寓要四,五千塊美元一個月。比較好的地段,高樓層有景觀的二房公寓要一萬多一個月。紐約有數不完的國際知名的大公司和幾十萬個小商店。紐約人在紐約賺的錢要打聯邦稅,州稅,市稅,它是美國付稅最高的城市之一。紐約市每個月收的稅錢都不知道有多少。可是紐約市的流浪漢和乞丐雖然不能說到處都是,可是多的我這個鄉下佬都快要開始習以為常了。

紐約的天空在夕陽西下時。

漂亮的大樓在世界貿易中心附近。沒有兩三百萬在口袋裏,別進去。你買不起的。

可是,走在路上看到這些人,我沒法否認,我心中仍然嘀咕嘀咕的,生怕會發生什麼事情。

Spot Dessert Bar, East Village, NYC August 26, 2017

Posted by hslu in 美國, Food, Travel.
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Who: Me and my wife

Where; St. Mark Street between 2nd and the 3rd ave., East Village, Lower East Side, New York City, U.S.A.

Why: dessert 

When: A Friday evening at 10:30 pm.

What: ice cream and chocolate 

大方,美麗,可愛。

很可愛

Recette,West Village, New York September 7, 2015

Posted by hslu in Food, Restaurants.
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This was a great restaurant and it wasn‘t easy to get a reservation for five or six people on a Thursday night. Even you have a reservation, you might have to wait a bit because the restaurant isn’t very large and it was busy all the time.

Street parking was almost impossible. You could pay $35 for 2 hour at a parking garage nearby. You could drive around the neighborhood look for a spot. If you were lucky, you might catch someone leave four or five blocks away. And that was what I did.

The restaurant was quite famous and the prices were very reasonable for the city of New York.

We ordered several dishes to share and a bottle of wine from Spain.

It was a 2009 Bodegas y Vinedos Alion from Ribera del Duero, Spain. I didn’t know how good the wine was until I checked the web later. It was rated 91 points by Wine Spectator and 93 point by Wine Advocate. Let’s just say that it was pretty high.

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We had cheese from farms around the world, imported cold meat, country pate, roasted olives, and Foie Gras Terrine. We also have several entrées: duck breast, pork belly, grilled king fish, grilled scallops, wild arugula and  seabass.

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For dessert, we shared ice cream, toasted marshmallow and “hot” chocolate glaze.

S’MORES graham cracker ice cream, toasted marshmallow, “hot” chocolate ganache..................................... 9

You might want to give the restaurant a chance.

 

一个 54-stroke 怪字:Biang! September 30, 2013

Posted by hslu in China, Chinese Food, Restaurants, Travel.
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西安名吃 logo, New York

西安名吃 logo, New York

Xian Famous Food

Xian Famous Foods

A board in the restaurant describing some of their famous offerings:xiaolongbao, dumplings,hand-stretched noodles and hotpots。 All very good。

A board in the restaurant describing some of their famous offerings: xiao long bao, dumplings, hand-stretched noodles and spicy hotpots. All very good.

Biang3, this is how you pronounce this word!Biang3, this is how you pronounce this word!

I don't like the second to the last sentence.

I don’t like the second to the last sentence.

I actually don’t like the second to the last sentence “两个贼娃立在旁.”

“刂” is a radical,or 部首, and it means the the same as 刀 (dao); a knife or a blade. We usually call “刂” “立刀旁”,or “立刀;” a knife standing on its pointing end.

Instead of “两个贼娃立在旁” may be we can change it to this: “一把利刀立在旁.”

You will see this “word” or symbol at Xi’an Famous Foods restaurant or Biang! on Main Street in Flushing, New York.

They have fabulous food if you like spicy taste.

My daughter and her husband bought us to its Chinatown place (original) a while back and we we liked it a lot. It was small and busy but it has a great reputation and attracted a loyal clientele, including a few very famous ones.

Their Flushing location is bigger and newer and it was equally busy. Its “红油抄手“ or ”wontons in red pepper oil“ was the best I’ve ever tried. You have to try them yourself!

Cold weather is coming and their food is perfect for that.

BTW, may be you can come up with an alternative to that “second to the last” sentence.

One City at a Time July 26, 2013

Posted by hslu in Congress, Economics, Politics.
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Detroit is going down the tube. City officials kept kicking the can down the road until it hits a wall. One city at a time, America is falling apart. Congress keeps kicking the can down to road and the nation is following the steps of Detroit.

But, what’s the difference between Detroit and America, you might ask? America can print money but Detroit can’t.

For the United States, the can will eventually hit a wall when foreign countries and institutions stops buying U.S. government bonds or when US dollar stops to be the reserve currency of the world. The interest will then rise sharply and America government will barely have enough tax money to service the debt. It will be the end of the road for America. Slowly but eventually.

Well, not all Americans will suffer the same destiny.

The rich people will further segregate from the poor: geographically and socially. Fifth Avenue in NY will remain busy with foreign tourists and Park Avenue in NY will continue to be crowded with billionaires. Washington DC, well, just the NW quadrant, will continue to be filled with lobbyists and restaurants there will continue to serve Representatives, Senators paid by special interest groups. Rich people will continue to vacation in Martha’s Vineyard and houses in the Hamptons will continue to rent for more than $1 million for the summer.

America is hollowed out from the middle. Pretty soon, there are not enough middle income people to pay taxes. Of course, rich guys will move their money to foreign countries and the bottom 50+% will stay because they have no place to go.

Question: who is going to pay the taxes then?

This is what’s called “民不富则国不强.”

BTW, there are five more cities in Michigan that are under emergency management. Meaning: these five cities are insolvent and they are running out of money to pay the bills. Pretty sad, isn’t it?

Take a look of class segregation in Detroit and you will be surprised to see the obvious.

Yeah, This is where the rich people go in Detroit. Detroit International Riverfront. Source: Wikipedia

Packard Automotive Plant, closed and Abandoned since 1958. Source: Wikipedia

Abandoned Houses: One Block in Detroit

Houses on Detroit’s East Side are left to crumble, rot, and burn. Source: Danny Wilcox-Frazier/Redux

Detroit Population Trend

Detroit Population Trend - Race

Weiners and Clintons: A Combination made in Heaven. July 25, 2013

Posted by hslu in Congress, Politics.
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Watch out, New York! Clinton junior is asking for your votes. And Hillary junior is helping him out.

Weiner, or Carlos Danger, along with Huma have taken a page right out of Clinton and Hillary’s play book.

Listen to Weiner in case you’ve missed it: “I love her.” (smiles exchanged.) “She loves me. We have a son. Nothing else matters.”

Source: http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2013/07/25/huma-abedin-faces-employment-questions/#ixzz2a7IiiNQm

Yeah! Except Weiner’s political career, Huma’s salaries and Weiner’s perversive life style.

It appears that traditional family value isn’t that important to American politicians

Here is why:

Thomas Jefferson                            President of the United States

John F. Kennedy                        President of the United States

Bill Clinton                                President of the United States

David Petraeus                         CIA Director

Newt Gingrich                          Speaker of the House

Arnold Schwarzenegger           Governor, California

Gary Condi                               Representative, California

John Edwards                           Senator, North Carolina

Anthony Weiner                       Representative, New York

Mark Sanford                           Representative, South Carolina

Barney Frank                            Representative, Massachusetts

Eliot Spitzer                              Governor, AG, New York

David Wu                                  Representative, Oregon

John Ensign                               Senator, Nevada

Henry Hyde                               Representative, Illinois

Robert Livingston                     Representative, Louisiana

Dan Burton                                Representative, California

Gary Hart                                   Senator, Colorado

Collectively, these famous American politicians have set a great example for American teenagers and young kids. We call it”以身做则“ or watch what I do not what I say.

I hope young parents have a good answer in mind when their kids are old enough to raise questions on these politicians’ behaviors. Oh! infidelities among movie stars or athletes such as Tiger Woods, are a given. That’s just the way it is. It’s the American way. No explanation is necessary.

No wonder the divorce rate in America is approaching 40% for all married couples; down from nearly 50% in the 1980’s.

What a great country America is! It probably ranks no. 1 in this category as well!

Well, an improvement is an improvement! Can’t argue with the trend, can I?

Is this the product of feminism or is there more to it than that? I guess this qualifies as one of the “progresses” of a progressive civilization.

A mosque 2 blocks away from Ground Zero? June 11, 2010

Posted by hslu in Global Affair, Religion.
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A 15-story Islamic community center which includes a mosque is being planned just two blocks from Ground Zero in New York.

Hmm, what’s the rationale on this?

Let’s build a Japanese 靖国神社 “jing1 guo2 shen2 she4” or Yasukuni Shrine, near Pearl Harbor Memorial where more than 2,000 US service men died.

How about building a Japanese 靖国神社 “jing1 guo2 shen2 she4” or Yasukuni Shrine, in the city of Nanjing, China where Japanese soldiers murdered 300,000 innocent Chinese and raped anywhere between 20,000 and 80,000 women?

I wonder how many churches are there in Saudi Arabia?

Central Park – Manhattan, New York Aug 2009 August 16, 2009

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Central Park – Manhattan, New York

We have been to New York many times but have never been to Central Park before. The opportunity came when we stayed at Jennifer and Bobby’s apartment in Upper East Manhattan for 4 days in early August 2009. Xiao bao came with us after we picked him up from Atlantic City. He went there with Stella and Chun-wei for two days.

I got up early (around 7:30 AM) on Sunday to check my car a few blocks down because I took a chance to park at a No Parking zone last night hoping that no one in the city hall would be craze enough to get up so early on Sunday to issue parking tickets. Well, I was wrong. The ticket was issued by Officer Thomas at 7:17 AM on August 2, 2009. The fine was $115. Gee! That was pretty stiff. I guess New York City was on the brink of bankruptcy and it needed every dollar to keep the city going.

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After going back to the apartment, I decided to take a walk and Jennifer suggested that we went to Central Park. That seemed to be a good idea because Maria has bugged me for a visit to central Park almost every time we were in NY. Well, I’ll kill two birds with one stone. Not bad a deal!

Walking to Central Park from York Street took almost 20 minutes because we were looking for a place for some coffee and pastry. We came upon this small place on 73rd street called Via Quadronno, a small Panini bar which traced its root to Milan, Italy. We shared a cup of latte and a small pastry which cost us $10. The small shop sports a flying boar but I do not know its origin. It appears that there are other stores in NY, Tokyo, and Hong Kong. The pastry was just so so but the latte was good. Price was a little high though. Apparently via Quadronno is the name of a little known street in the city of Milan. It came to fame in the 60’s because of its famous Panini.

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As soon as we walked into Central Park, we were attracted by its beauty because it was so peaceful and calm under the morning sun. The trees and grass were so green and beautiful it had rained last night.

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I noticed many large pieces of bedrocks through out the park and thought they blended well into the scenery. The bedrocks also added another dimension and color to the mostly green and soft background. I couldn’t help but wanted to know more about the geological setting of the park. It turns out that most of North America was covered by ice sheet 3 to 4 kilometer thick a mere 20,000 years ago. The glacial ice glided through North America and the scouring action of the glacial left these geological features in this area.

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We walked around and admired the tranquility created by the small lakes, huge trees and small houses that dotted the shore line. We saw the Boathouse and it seemed to be good place to have a lunch or a glass of white wine. Interestingly enough, the tall concrete buildings in the background didn’t bother me that much as if they were there to create a contrast to the park.

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The day after, we went back to Central Park again; this time in the afternoon. We entered from the west side near Tavern on the Green and walked directly to the Boathouse. At there, we shared a cup of coffee on the terrace to the side of the outdoor restaurant. Many people were there enjoyed a nice afternoon.

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As we walked back to the car, we saw the Ghostbusters’ building on Central Park West and saw two couples having their wedding photos taken there. One couple had two photographers working on a shot on the stairs near a tunnel. The other couple had all their guests of about 80 people walking several hundred yards to Bethesda Terrace where they had a group photo taken.

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There were many tourists in the park as well as several groups of street performers along the tree-covered walk way.

As we walked closer to 59th I couldn’t help but noticed a whiff of odor in the air from horses and buggies there. By this time, Central Park had lost its charm and that was the time we left there.

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