Kings Co Imperial Offers The Fresh Take Chinese Food Needs

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In a step-by-step process that almost feels mundane to us now, Chinese food has a timing to it that almost feels like clockwork. 6:00, the order gets delivered, 6:30 everyone feels full, 6:50 the leftovers are loaded into the refrigerator, 9:55 everyone raids the refrigerator, and the next morning everyone wakes up feeling like it’s the morning after Saint Patrick’s Day. No more.

At Kings Co Imperial, all of that gets tossed out the window with an impressive menu that takes the practices of using ingredients fresh from the garden like in restaurants in China (as opposed to processed options typical in NYC) to create dishes that are authentic, delicious, and that you wake up the next morning remembering a great meal instead of painful regret. The team behind Kings Co Imperial are using a more traditional cooking method that amps up the flavor of the food, by blanching dishes in broth rather than oil. While similar counterparts like Michelin Star approved Tim Ho Wan (an admittedly very good restaurant too) takes a different approach to “traditional” Chinese food, with recipes from Cantonese methods, the food at Kings Co feels and tastes like New York Chinese food stylings, without the guilt trip afterward. We’re not going to sit here and tell you this is health-food by any means, but it’s a great restaurant run by a team of industry professionals that have analyzed the best and worst points of Chinese food by frequently traveling to China to hone their craft, and trimmed the fat off the whole operation.

The restaurant pours out the food, and group visits are the best way to dine here. As the meal progresses, tabletop real estate becomes crucial with all the plates of food and family style serving plates filling the wood surfaces. (Though, this does make for some killer Instagram shots with the full table.) Be advised though, the freshness and taste of this food is paramount, so dishes will come out as ready, rather than holding everything to come out at once for the group. With three woks constantly churning out the food for the entire restaurant, food is sent out right as its cooked so chefs can get to work on the next creation. Our personal favorites included the wok seared long dumpling, beef and noodles, dry fried long beans, and the “Chop Your Head Off” Cabbage Soup. Each of these come with a beautiful plume of steam at their unveiling and pack a serious punch of flavor by using ingredients right from their garden that put them on a level above the rest.

 

Cocktails also make a great addition to the meal, with their cocktail program currently bringing in all new options to compliment the dishes, the current offerings compliment the menu perfectly in a way that Chinese food doesn’t often get.

As an atmosphere, the restaurant straddles a unique divide: between casual dining where jeans and a sweater seems to be the go-to for diners, but with an elevated quality in the cooking that says this restaurant is everything but status quo. While there are other restaurants in the city looking to take on high end Chinese food, Kings Co seems to rise to the occasion with a more laid-back dining room that doesn’t come with the sucker punch to the wallet like finer dining experiences do.

While the restaurant has already been lauded across Brooklyn, Manhattanites need not fear the L line any longer to have access to it, the restaurant will soon be opening up a new location in the Lower East Side right off Delancey Street in the months to come. The location is perfect for the downtown crowd to reach both Lower East Siders looking for some late night bites, and those super in-the-know locals moving south of Delancey into the new lower, lower east side.

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