It's been a little while since we've talked up Paris Restaurant, the cheap and mostly reliable Vietnamese spot on Mott Street in Chinatown. In that last look, I said we'd be back for some of the menu's more daring items. But frogs legs and curry mussels will have to wait for another day. It's time to talk pork chops.
There's no shortage of pork chops in this neighborhood, but Paris' rendition ($6) stands out. For one there's the size of the thing: three big blades of centimeter-thick pork spread across the plate. Then there's its crust, which is lacquered with sugar and fish sauce to an almost pastry-like crispness. And there's the meat itself, quite juicy and fairly tender, undeniably porky despite the intensity of its charred glaze. Our pork chop expert Robyn gives it her first class stamp of approval.
The dish is everything that's right about the cheap eats mentality: do great things with something thrifty and humble. For six bucks, it's a great thing to do to a pound of pork.
113 Mott Street, New York, NY 10013 (map)