08 November 2008

Sun-Chan: Bento Box Supreme

Jeff and I don't have a ton of neighborhood restaurants that we like. I mean, we have a Thai place that has delicious takeout, an equally delicious Mexican place, and a taco truck. (Man, do we LOVE the taco truck. If you're ever up by where we are, they are located at the south-west corner of 96th and Broadway. Eat some chivo. You won't regret it. Unless you're vegetarian.) For everything else, though, we are have to trek elsewhere.

Except for tonight, when we went to an easily overlooked, charming Japanese place two blocks away from the house, Sun-Chan. I'd been there a few times before, and each time I had one of those "DOH!" moments--why don't I come here more often?

Sun-Chan is great. It's this small, worn-looking box of a restaurant, squished between a 24 hour convenience store and something equally nondescript (a pizza place, maybe?). We didn't even notice it for a long time because it was obscured by this enormous scaffolding that was only recently taken down. But once inside, it's like a whole different place. The food is homey, reasonably priced, and extremely tasty. We also really enjoy the fact that a good two-thirds of the clientele are Japanese, young and old. We especially like their udon and soba soup (can you guess which one I got?) and their agedashi tofu: deep fried tofu in a ponzu/dashi broth. It's one of those dishes that I've always loved--my mom always ordered it when we went out for Japanese when I was little--and it's one of my litmus tests for quality food. And Sun-Chan's is outstanding. Hot, fresh, not oily. Perfect. Just like Sun-Chan itself.

If you're ever in the neighborhood:

Sun-Chan
2707 Broadway
New York, NY 10025

1 comment:

Arul Sundaram said...

Mei - nice to see a foodie in the neighborhood! I'm assuming the Mexican place you're talking about is Noche Mexicana. If not, my wife and I recommend it! Also, on the theme of Mexican, there are two street vendors selling tamales - a woman at the north-east entrance to the 96th street 1,2,3 station who is generally there in the mornings, and a couple of women who run a cart at 106 and Amsterdam. Perhaps not THE best tamales ever, but fun for a neat neighborhood snack. Finally, there are a cople of standby's that maybe you've tried and rejected (but I thought I'd bring up): Gennaro's and the Dive Bar. Gennaro's is pretty famous, so I'm guessing you've tried and rejected. To me, though, unless you're traveling to Lupa / Babbo, Gennaro's holds its own. Dive Bar, meanwhile, we think is underrated on the food scale - it's not the best food, but it's damn good pub fare.b