December 31, 2009

New Shine in Sunset Park

Having read about New Shine on a blog, I went into this new eatery the other day while shopping in Sunset Park.

I wanted to love it, because it is cheap and the proprietors are very friendly. Best of all, it's down at the lower end of Sunset Park, in the 40s, where parking is still within the realm of possibility.

Unfortunately, it won't be replacing any of my other sichuan spots anytime soon.

I ordered the beef with cumin, thinking I would get a plate of beef strips crispily deep-fried and dusted with cumin and hot pepper, which is how they prepare this dish at Grand Sichuan House in Bay Ridge.

Instead I got this stir-fried melange of beef with peppers, and, underneath, stewed bok choy.

While I hate green pepper in my stir fries, these were authentic long hot peppers and they were delicious. The beef wasn't so good, over-velveted so that it was too soft, verging on gummy. There wasn't much discernible cumin flavor, either. The bok choy wasn't bad.

The place itself was hard to pin down. Run by the young and friendly, it kind of looks like it's going for the low rent young bubble tea crowd, but it offers hot pots and some sichuan dishes. The tablecloths, as seen in the photo above, are a bright bubble-gum pink, but the rest of the decor is dark, with lots of black paint.

It was a cold day and it was cold inside the restaurant. Although I've never been to Sichuan Province (or to China, for that matter) it felt somehow authentic, like I could have been sitting in a cold bubble tea hangout in Chengdu.

I guess that's worth something.

Happy New Year's!

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