I only recently realized that Xi'an Famous Foods, one of my "must eats" when I trek out to Flushing, could be found not only in the crammed basement of the Golden Shopping Mall, but also in the more spacious food court of the Flushing Mall. This modest food stall continues to dominate the city's Chinatowns with its latest location in Manhattan, on East Broadway and Forsyth Street. I don't have to spent 75 minutes on the subway to get a plate of liang pi anymore? Rejoice!
A friend and I visited the tiny storefront on Saturday for their grand opening promotion of free stewed pork burgers and cumin lamb burgers—they had sent an invite out through their Facebook fan page with the details. Both "burgers" are made with a toasted, slightly chewy roll split open and stuffed with chopped meat. We preferred the sweet, tender pork ($2), accented by chunks of fat, but even better would be if they could combine some of the spicy cumin sauce of the lamb burger ($2.50) with the pork for a spicy pork burger. A word of warning: the cumin is strong stuff. After eating a few bites, you'll might taste it on your breath for the rest of the day.
We didn't try anything else, but we watched proprietor Liang Pi (nicknamed after one of his most popular dishes, previously described by Joe DiStefano) pull fat ribbons of noodles for his hand pulled noodles dishes (all $5). I know what I'm getting next time. Eventually, I plan on eating the entire menu.
Xi'an Famous Foods
88 East Broadway #106, New York NY 10002 (at Forsyth Street; map)