121 Hudson St., New York, NY (@ N. Moore St.)
Glossy, glitzy and luscious are generally uncommon terms when describing a Chinese restaurant, and Mr. Chow fits all these bills. A TriBeCa institution since 1978 and a favorite of the 80’s art scene, the dining room quite literally dangles its credentials point blank: featuring ominous, jumbo-sized original portraits by Julian Schnabel (of Christopher Walken) and Andy Warhol (of Mr. Chow himself). With no menu to peruse, you’ll describe your likes and dislikes and leave your fate into the hands of your overly attentive, tuxedoed waiter. In turn, expect to marvel at the guilty pleasures that will inevitably arrive – crispy seaweed and candied nuts, followed by dumplings, Peking duck and chicken satay – the skewer’s creamy signature peanut sauce alone has a devoted following. A flock of celebrity cohorts swear by the cuisine here (Madonna and Penelope Cruz have both been spotted here, and it’s said that Seal personally delivered parcels of Mr. Chow to Heidi Klum in the hospital following her last baby), as well as flashy types with money to burn. That said, be forewarned that the mouth-watering dishes don’t come without jaw-dropping prices.
Photo: NY Eater