© Wendell T. Webber
The annual LUCKYRICE festival held at the beginning of May in New York City showcases Asian food created by local chefs who cook or simply love the cuisine. Here, Food & Wine reveals where these chefs satisfy their Asian food cravings.
Dee Thai, Sunnyside, Queens
Ian Kittichai, Ember Room: "I love pad krapow [stir-fry with basil]. I could eat it every day. It's a bit sweet, salty—it's everything you'd want to eat. Whenever I don't know what to get, I'll get this dish. It's kind of like how some people always feel like getting eggs Benedict when they sit down to brunch. Every time I'm in NYC and want some pad krapow, I go to Dee Thai in Sunnyside, Queens. They actually do it exactly like the street vendors in Thailand. Also, the restaurant itself is small and cozy, so I feel like I'm back home in Bangkok when I'm there."
Pok Pok, Lower East Side
Brad Farmerie, PUBLIC: "I go to Pok Pok pretty much every two or three days. Andy Ricker's food is incredible, and it happens to be one block from my house. He has a laap [a type of Thai salad] made with offal, blood and all kinds of bits and pieces, served with a big heap of bitter, fresh and spicy herbs. There are really citrusy ones too, so you can enhance the funky, full-on flavor of the meat by using all the freshness."
Yakitori Totto, Midtown West
Angelo Sosa (Top Chef alum), Social Eatz: "My favorite place right now is Yakitori Totto. It's on 58th Street between Seventh and Eighth Avenues. It's upstairs. I think it's the best yakitori in the city. I'm not crazy with obscure things, but they do these beef hearts that are just ridiculous."
Congee Village, Lower East Side
Susur Lee, Lee: "I love congee. I think it's a food you can eat for breakfast, lunch and dinner. It reminds me of childhood, and I love that. Congee Village in the Lower East Side is my go-to place."
Wang Chow Seafood, Lower East Side
Miguel Trinidad, Maharlika: "I love dim sum. There's a place on Essex and East Broadway called Wang Chow Seafood. We go there every Sunday before staff meal to eat before Sunday service. We're there a lot."