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Long’s Noodle House

Long’s Noodle House has been on my “hit-list” for far too long. It’s a tiny, easy to miss spot on Main St. between 32nd and 33rd with a great reputation for their Shanghainese cuisine.

Don’t be too dismayed by the shoddy exterior. Long’s is another one of those places that puts emphasis on their food without much attention paid to aesthetics…my favorite kind of place!

We arrived during the noon-hour on a Monday. The restaurant was about half full. Before too long, it was packed. Our friendly server/owner, Sandy, was running the floor single-handedly. When I told her we were going to order about ten dishes, she didn’t bat an eye or even grab a pad of paper. As I reeled off our choices, she simply tapped a fingertip for each one. Amazing, really.

Our first dish is a must-order here. The Wine Chicken is served at room-temp in a beautiful ceramic crock. Chicken legs are poached in Shaoxing wine, broth, pepper, ginger and a bit of sugar. A great display of simplicity.

A sensational way to treat a chicken. Keep it simple and bring out the best of your product…works every time.

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Abdul BBQ

I’ve always wondered what, exactly, is the difference between a shawarma, a donair and a gyro. It turns out, not much. All three terms refer to “turning” or “rotating” spits of meats. Trencher Man summed it up nicely in a forum on chow.com. There are, however, variations in sauces used. Gyros, typically have tzatziki. Donairs may come with a creamy, garlic sauce. Shawarmas may be laced with tahini. Recently, I checked out Abdul BBQ for his version of Lamb Shawarma.

Abdul, the affable owner is also its only employee, as far as I can tell. After many visits over the years, I’ve yet to see anyone else helping out. It’s quite a busy shop with a steady stream of regular clientele.

This is a man who takes great pride in his work. It’s probably more to do with him being the owner…not a hired hand on minimum wage that has no real stake in the business. You can see the result not only in his food but the general cleaniness of the establishment.

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