Sunday, January 17, 2010

Escape from Boston: Chinatown, Boston

what better get-away then a foodie tour of Chinatown with kids, where chopsticks and bit-size snacks rule.

Boston, MA

Growing up in the '80's, Chinatown was as close as we got to Miami Vice; "quick Sonny, cover me while I run in for a roast pork bun at Ho Yuen." In the 90's we would hop the Fung Wa to Chinatown NYC. Was life really just worth a $10 flaming ride of death to the Big Apple in our twenties?

Now that I have grown up a bit, my favorite tri-fecta is the train in, the aquarium and dim sum for lunch. Sure, it's weird walking through a bamboo park where there used to be homeless men, (still one, thank goodness.) Ho Yuen is still there, but the bullets seem to have moved on. Mohegan Sun buses have arrived, and poor Fung Wa is still chugging, (a few more fires later and stiff competition from Lucky Star and the Bolt bus.) You can even still get great produce your kids can't pronounce at jaw-dropping prices and the arches still make it feel like you are off on the other side of the globe. There's even rare, free street parking on Sundays for the taking.

Our latest adventure finally got us around to China Pearl. I try to keep up on the Chowhound dim sum wars, but was stuck dining in the 'burbs with the kids more often than not this year. Our friends warned of an hour wait, but we were in before the mad rush. Golden dragons on the walls and tiled roof motifs made it feel just like Beijing, (ok, I've never been there, but I really want to go! Maybe more like cheesy suburban Beijing dining in the midwest.) Decor aside, the food was great, the service better than most and Sydney even interrupted his narwal fencing chopsticks game to quote Amy Wilson Sanger's Yum Yum Dim Sum. For just a couple of hours as we wound down from watching seals and fish we pretended to be swept away to the far east.