Back in the day I lived in the republic of Chinatown NYC on Grand and Forsyth. I rented a cozy not so cozy tenement apartment overlooking a park filled with Tae Chi-ers and Chinese men clustered together smoking, snorting, spitting and possibly talking about the days "fresh" fish. Coming home from a long days work uptown, I retreated into my own republic of Kalen. I did not have to worry about construction workers cat calling "Mami, heyyy Mami, I love you" or having to look presentable in the least. Instead, I appreciated the comforts of the best but probably most unhealthy food that NYC has to offer. My two favorite restaurants reside in this area. One of which New Green Bo but changed to Nice Green Boe after I left has the best scallion pancakes, sesame cold noodle, Sesame Chicken (white meat!) and soup dumplings. You must go, it drives any tastebuds into toothsome heaven. I hear it's not as good if you're vegetarian so I would drop the schtick for one day and try it. It's BYOB and most of the time you get this waitress who looks like she's landed from Mars.
I probably should have done two posts because it's far too lengthy and you've given up reading this by now. BUT my other favorite restaurant is Pho Grand on Grand and Forsyth. I feel amazing, sheltered, cozy, and safe when in the presence of Pho Grand. The lemongrass tofu (#94) is the bomb even if you aren't a tofu lover. This is what I miss most about my Chinatown digs. Not the mouse ridden apartment but the superfluous flow of greasy laden food filled with cats and MSG and everything in between.