I love exploring new cuisines and cultures, so when my good friend from Hong Kong, Maria, suggested to take me to some cool spots in Chinatown with delicious food, the foodie in me could not say no.
This is neither the order we ate, nor did we visit all of these in one visit, but I’m just going to separate by courses —appetizer, dinner, and dessert… Cool?
Oh last, thing, I’ve gone to all of these places more than once, so now I’m a (fake) expert.
Okay, I’m ready. You ready?
bb-q chicken - 938 Race St, Philadelphia, PA 19107
They don’t have a website, but check them out on Yelp.
This was my first time having Korean fried chicken and baybeeeee, SO good! You guys, that double fried crunch is serious. She recommend the garlic honey sauce (I’ve also tried the spicy sweet flavor which was spicy and tasty, but honestly just stick with the honey garlic if you only want one order lol). I don’t think I’ve tasted sauce that was actually 50/50 of flavor you can really taste the garlic and you can really taste the honey and the marriage between the two is a true covenant. Each time I get them there’s no talking at the table. All wing orders come with pickled radish to cleanse the palate, which is useful when trying their other flavored wings, sweet potato fries (nothing to ride home about), and the various teas.
I wouldn’t get tea from here, we’ll get to tea later. Stay with me.
Terakawa - 204 N 9th St, Philadelphia, PA 19107
Ramen anyone? Allegedly, this is the best place to get ramen in Philly. I’ve tried one other ramen place in Center City and it was okay, but right now, Terakawa got the crown.
I got Spicy ramen which is “Natural Heritage Berkshire Pork bone soup with a chicken and seafood broth, topped with roast pork (charshu), bean sprouts, kimchee, a seasoned boiled egg, kikurage mushrooms and scallions.” The ramen dish with the darker broth pictured in the first image is Mayu ramen: “Natural Heritage Pork bone soup with mayu oil (dark roasted leek with crushed garlic oil) topped with bamboo shoots, roast pork (charshu), chopped scallions, red ginger, kikurage mushroom and a seasoned boiled egg.” The image to the right is “Natural Heritage Berkshire Pork bone soup topped with roast pork (charshu), bamboo shoots, kikurage mushrooms, red ginger, chopped scallions and a seasoned boiled egg.” The spicy ramen is my favorite, but they are all PACKED with flavor. I kid you not.
This is like the perfect fall/winter meal so I expect you guys to visit. Terakawa has many other locations, but I haven’t visited so I’m not sure if they’d be just as good :)
Pro Tip: Eat the boiled egg first, you don’t want it to overcook the entire time you’re eating. Kinda salty, very delicious.
N2 Sweet Cafe - 125 N 11th St, Philadelphia, PA 19107
Although I do have experience working with liquid nitrogen tanks because they’re commonly used for human cell storage, I’ve never had liquid nitrogen ice cream. I’m a scientist so don’t mind me, but the concept of this is super cool! Liquid nitrogen quickly freezes and that causes the water and fat particles to remain small and creamy. (fun fact?) The decor here is cute and the ice cream is goooood. Since, it’s different than the traditional way of making ice cream, it might need to sit for a minute before digging. It’s “harder” than hard ice cream. Got me?
Pictured above are the two flavors we indulged in.
Nutty Professor: Reese’s and Oreo ice cream topped with chocolate chip cookie dough, chocolate stick, whipped cream, and premium chocolate drizzle. (on the left)
Black and White: vanilla ice cream mixed with Oreo pieces topped with white chocolate pieces, whipped cream and an Oreo cookie
Strawberry Bomb: strawberry ice cream topped with pink chocolate shavings, fresh strawberries, cheesecake, and whipped cream. (not pictured, but it’s another flavor I tried and it was also delish!)
Kung Fu Tea - 1006 Arch St.Philadelphia, PA 19107
Now King Fu Tea is also not an exclusive Philly spot, but this is where I got this delicious boba. Bubble tea is reallllly good. Since I didn’t know much about it, I was schooled by another friend from Taiwan, Angela, on this Taiwanese classic that a good beginner’s flavor is Taro with the bubbles (tapioca balls). Taro is an Asian plant similar to yams and it naturally has some sweetness. The first time I didn’t customize the sugar, but the second time I got half sugar. She’s legit all about her tea so she didn’t get any sugar lol. I’m thinking I could actually be open to that because the tapicoca balls are sweet too.
Hope you enjoyed this quick read and let me know if you plan to or have already visited these places! Comment below and keep up with me on Instagram!