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Momofuku Ssäm Bar (2006–2007)


Bond Girl
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You know, it occurs to me that Chang is now developing an empire around the name 'Momofuku', and, do you know what always bothered me about Momofuku and it's siblings, is that if you are going to name your restaurant after the inventor of instant ramen, you had better make a good ramen, and i don't see that in their noodles or broth. Or was that the point?

From the momofuku homepage:

"momofuku noodle bar is in no way related to Mr. Momofuku Ando"

I want pancakes! God, do you people understand every language except English? Yo quiero pancakes! Donnez moi pancakes! Click click bloody click pancakes!

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I felt the dish as a whole actually fell a bit short of its individual components, however, as I enjoyed it more when sampling the jelly, cookie, and ice cream separately.  Each is a great example within its class, but the dish's holistic flavor profile lacked a little bit of punch or uniqueness.

Hmmm... I'd agree that each element of the dessert is the best in its class, but I also think that the peanut butter, jelly and saltines combination works very well. The saltine ice cream provides a nice twist on a trusted classic.

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So I've finally re-read, more carefully, the Richman piece, and I've got to say I think it misses the point. It's a beautifully written portrait of Chang, and contains a lot of insights and factual tidbits, but Richman comes at the project from an old-media perspective. Chang, however, is a new media figure. Magazines like GQ, newspapers like the New York Times, they're all playing catch-up on Chang and the Momofuku phenomenon. Not a single mention of Eater in the whole story? Worse, Richman fails to put Momofuku in context by drawing the increasingly obvious connections to the other new-paradigm places we've been identifying and talking about here for ages.

Steven A. Shaw aka "Fat Guy"
Co-founder, Society for Culinary Arts & Letters, sshaw@egstaff.org
Proud signatory to the eG Ethics code
Director, New Media Studies, International Culinary Center (take my food-blogging course)

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Question: 8 of us are going to Ssam bar this coming week. Some want to order the Bo Ssam (whole pork shoulder)......but others have said it is so much food we won't be able to explore the rest of the menu if we order the Bo Ssam.

Thoughts from those of you who have ordered it?

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Well, if you're like me, you'd get bored of just eating just pork butt for your dinner when there's so much else to explore.

They can pack it up for you afterwards into individual portion sizes (including the sauces). It makes a nice, fatty lunch the next day.

If you do wish to do the Bo Ssam, I'd make a decision quickly. I have a feeling they get booked up pretty far in advance these days.

"I'll put anything in my mouth twice." -- Ulterior Epicure
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Question: 8 of us are going to Ssam bar this coming week. Some want to order the Bo Ssam (whole pork shoulder)......but others have said it is so much food we won't be able to explore the rest of the menu if we order the Bo Ssam.

Thoughts from those of you who have ordered it?

Never had that happen with 8 people we've been to Ssam Bar with - just order a bunch of stuff before the bo ssam, and as kathryn said, if there are leftovers, they'll pack them up nicely for you.

Oh, and save some room for dessert.

Mitch Weinstein aka "weinoo"

Tasty Travails - My Blog

My eGullet FoodBog - A Tale of Two Boroughs

Was it you baby...or just a Brilliant Disguise?

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Oh, and save some room for dessert.

Do they still have the Concord grape deconstructed peanut butter dessert? That was fantastic.

I happen to be joining DutchMuse on Monday and am really looking forward to it. The last time I was there was after meeting Weinoo at PDT!

Cheers! :cool:

Yes, they still have it. I had it on Tuesday night and it was superb as always. PB+J+Saltines is a wonderful combination that I'll never tire of.

A new dessert is on the menu starting today. It's a spicy chocolate crumble cake with banana cream. Very good. I recommend this in addition to the PB+J+S and the cheddar shortcake w/ ham cream (which remains my favorite).

The preparation of the mackerel dish has changed. It's now a tataki served over a spicy kimchi with some asian pear. This dish is easy to share and may be nice to have as one of your appetizers for your Bo Ssam.

Edit - other share-able dishes that may be nice to have with the Bo Ssam: brussels sprouts, apple salad, the hamachi, the pickle plate and the chicken ballotine. Depending on the size of your group, the mushrooms and the kimchi apples may be easy to share as well.

Edited by spaetzle_maker (log)
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As per the slip of paper that came with my receipt this evening - Ssam Bar is now offering a Bo Ssam to go.

There are two options:

1) Bo Ssam

Bo Ssam - whole braised pork butt, kimchi, bibb lettuce, rice, assorted condiments, Momofuku pickles, Banana Cream Pie

2) Deluxe Bo Ssam

Bo Ssam items above plus:

Smoked Chicken Wings, Steamed Pork Belly Buns, Prawns with Yuzu Mayo, Bean Sprouts Salad, Kimchi Apples, Roasted Cauliflower

Reserve at least one week in advance - Call Ssam Bar at 212-254-3500 ex 109, or email them at catering@momofuku.com

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Oh... the horror... of a food hangover...

We hit Ssam last night and it was a whirlwind of food and wine. Chef Chang was there and greeted us and basically cooked for us personally (several at the table knew him very well). One of the best meals I've eaten in a while. Great company and wines made for a thoroughly enjoyable evening.

My only nit is that many of the dishes were overly salty. But otherwise everything was spot-on. There were some new dishes and many old favorites, including the Concord grape dessert (though that was one of the salty ones). The Bo Ssam was just out of this world.

I'll wait to see if DutchMuse posts his food notes here otherwise I'll do it later. Right now I need to drink lots of water and avoid thinking about food...

Cheers! :cool:

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Oh, it was kind of neat that Chef offered us a dish that isn't on the menu yet, a foie gras "snow". He freezes a block of foie, grates it using a planer, then adds lychees, raisins and peanuts to the panko-looking dish. Interesting but needs tweaking, IMHO. Folks at the table seemed to like it more than me, and I LOVE foie gras.

I think I am still full...

Cheers! :cool:

Edited by Vinotas (log)
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That you have 179 photos in your Ssam Bar photo set is very amusing.  This place obviously has very devoted fans.

Hi, have we met? :)

Greystreet, I assume you're looking on East 11th or East 12th between 2nd and 1st.

"I'll put anything in my mouth twice." -- Ulterior Epicure
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Went back tonight with a big group (10 total) for the Bo Ssam. We ordered one of each ham (which lead to a hilarity of plate passing and confusion), two orders of brussels sprouts, two orders of apple kimchi, and a bunch of pork buns (one per person). Only a few ounces of Bo Ssam remained at the end of the night (god, the skin! It's amazing), and we also managed to polish off a PB&J and spicy chocolate crumble cake. Yes, we are Eaters.

They're now offering two tasting menus, with wine pairings available. One was $45, the other was $75 I think (can't remember, ate too much Bo Ssam, will have to check my friends' photos). There was nothing on the tasting menus you couldn't get off of the regular menu, but they both seemed like very good values for the price, as well as a good way to try many of the dishes at once. You can find the menus on the first page of the wine list (bound black book).

Edited by kathryn (log)
"I'll put anything in my mouth twice." -- Ulterior Epicure
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