Slideshow: Yunnan Kitchen: Lighter, Brighter Regional Chinese Comes To Manhattan

Braised Beef Rolls ($10)
Braised Beef Rolls ($10)
Paper thin slices of tender Braised Beef Rolls ($10) wrapped around cucumbers and mint leaves come glazed with a sweet and savory sauce and a shower or fried garlic. It's instantly reminiscent of Vietnamese pho bo, but far, far more refreshing. Light braised beef? Who'd have thought?
Chrysanthemum Leaf Salad ($7)
Chrysanthemum Leaf Salad ($7)
Bitter herbal flavors show up in dishes like the Chrysanthemum Leaf Salad ($7), which smells like geraniums but tastes like bitter arugula coated with a tahini-like sesame dressing.
Chinese Sausage Fried Rice ($13)
Chinese Sausage Fried Rice ($13)
Chinese Sausage Fried Rice ($13) made with seasonal mushrooms (Yunnan is the mushroom capitol of China, if not the world), and sweet cured Chinese sausage custom-made at Salumeria Biellese is a little greasier and much more expensive than you'd expect. The rice is slick enough it tumbles into individual grains through your chopsticks.
Cold Noodles ($10)
Cold Noodles ($10)
Wide Rice Noodles ($10) served cold and topped with pork, herbs, peanuts, and chilis sounds like a cross-cultural stroke of genius—dan dan noodles through a Vietnamese lens—but are marred by mushy texture and a sauce that leaves you wishing it were either more Sichuan or more Vietnamese. It's lost in a bland netherworld between the two.
Fried Potato Balls ($8)
Fried Potato Balls ($8)
Excellent little croquettes that you'd never think fit into a Chinese restaurant, but they seem to live for the sweet soy dipping sauce.
Chinese Greens ($7)
Chinese Greens ($7)
The greens change depending on availability. This time, the bok choy was faultlessly cooked, if a little blandly seasoned.