Moon Kee (UWS)

Another very enjoyable HO dinner (for the company most especially), this time at a new-ish Canotonese with a large dim sum selection that’s available in the evening - whoo hoo! Much of the food was solid, but nothing stood out to me as a truly excellent dish. The scallop/shrimp dumplings and bok choy were fine, the pan-fried noodles a little better than that, and the walnut shrimp a little worse. (I’ve never had that dish before. Maybe you have to get used to the mayonnaise.) The salt & pepper squid were expertly fried, but the squid inside was tough. Har gao, shrimp-stuffed peppers and rice rolls were not as good as in the downtown cart places like House of Joy, but you can’t get dim sum for dinner there, so…

Pix or it didn’t happen!


Definitely a fun dinner, as always.

My take on the food was slightly different. I liked all the Cantonese dishes, but I did not like any of the American Chinese dishes (then again I never order those, so all of them were new to me if you can believe it — the walnut shrimp, the sesame chicken, and the orange beef).

The dim sum overall was better when we went during the day / cart service, but the shiu mai was my favorite bite of the night.

The roast meats were very good imo — the duck, and the pork in the cheung fun, though you’re right, the cheung fun we’re not as good as when we had them a few weeks ago at lunchtime.

I liked both noodles more than any of the other entrees, the seafood pan-fried ones more than my otherwise favorite beef chow fun, but I’m always miffed when the sauce is too thick on pan-fried noodles because it congeals in a hot minute, like it did last night. Still, it was a better dish imo than the version we ate at Noodletown not too long ago, loaded with seafood that was well-cooked.

The S&P squid was way too salty for me — funnily enough, @vinouspleasure & I discussed that the saving grace was that the squid was tender, so maybe we got the tender pieces and you got the tough ones, lol.

It was a lot of food, and yet surprisingly not expensive for the neighborhood — and about what we pay for similar meals in chinatown (maybe less, because we usually get specialty seafood and meat dishes there, which were not on offer here).

Previous dim sum report:

GOOD EATS NYC 2024 (A Blanket Thread) - #14 by Saregama

Not just possible, but likely, since H said his was excellent. I have drawn the short squid straw!

More pics:





PORK CHEUNG FUN (no pic of shrimp)







BBQ COMBO OVER RICE (pork & duck)









I don’t “get” walnut shrimp either. Never have. It’s the weirdest dish, and I like mayo.

I have no major disagreements with any of the above except that I really liked it (the food, the service, the place & the price). Great pictures taken &, looking at them just reinforces my wish to return (eventually). Having grown up with what Saregama calls “American” Chinese food, I can say that these dishes compare favorably to other places doing them & I like them for what they are and the taste memories. I go out or order in with folks who like these type dishes, so I can compare these versions with the norm. Mostly when Orange Beef &/or Sesame Chicken are ordered, one gets more than enough breading with some minimal pounded chicken or beef. Here it was what it should be – nothing fancy or one of my top recommended things to order, but well made. As for the Walnut Shrimp, well I picked off some candied walnuts (they were good), as it has never been something I’ve liked. My wife likes it & I will make no further comment
Vis a vis the dim sum, my guess is that serving it in the evening lessens the chances of getting the place’s higher quality. But all (except maybe the ribs w/black beans) was, in my opinion, well made & it makes me happy to get dim sum dishes as apps. during dinner.
I thought the mains were well above average. My squid was also tender (sorry small_h, you really did seem to have gotten the tough ones), I liked the pan fried noodles with seafood well enough and I thought the beef chow fun was nicely done and wasn’t greasy (as can easily be the case). The roast duck was also very good.

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Me, too, Beef Chow Fun and Roasted Duck were my favorites, though weirdly, I really liked the ubiquitous broccoli accompaniments. I don’t think I’ve seen a menu (Cantonese-American?) like that since I was 20-something, grew up eating at Moon Palace just uptown from Moon Kee (thank you @DaveCook), and so it was, like @SteveR’s comments, a real blast from the past. Still, even if my Chinese palate has matured, I think it was so fun to get together with this crowd. And the round table made the big group size manageable, IMO.

I like dim sum, but on the UWS, I think I would still be going to Jing Fong. There are some good dumplings, etc. at Red Farm, but sticker shock and a lowering of quality last time I went, mean I think twice about that spot.

I had a universally awful experience at the downtown Red Farm, with someone who had recently been to the uptown one and liked it. Either they’re very different, or she doesn’t know what she’s talking about, or why not both.

Never been to the downtown one. Used to go quite regularly to the uptown one. (Spicy crispy beef was sublime, e.g.; cocktails were quite good too, and I felt totally comfortable eating solo at that bar.) Still, I felt it had missed a step last time I was there, and chalked it up to the post-pandemic realization that I didn’t know anyone behind the bar anymore, and that knowing and being known at one’s local(s) has been hard to replace…But perhaps it has just gone downhill. In any case, I haven’t been in a hurry to go back.

cantonese is my happy place, I liked it all, every bit of it! and it was great to see everyone again!

left to my own devices, I may not have ordered some of the dishes, but there is a certain charm to letting everyone pick a dish to share. In the end, I liked some of the dishes more than I thought I would. My favorites were the shumai and the duck. Though I thought the s&p squid too salty, I bet it would be great to split over a couple of cold beers. the claypot rice dishes on the other tables looked good too!

if xian had stayed open and moon kee was there when we left westchester, it would have made the decision to depart the uws for the ues much harder.

ps as steve mentioned, the service was great, I forgot to order a dish, they brought the wrong dish and forgot a dish or two but they were terrific about making mid-course corrections. I’d be there at least once every week or two if we still lived in the nabe.

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I think they’re about even for me, though Jing Fong has the crispy cheung fun (with mushroom or shrimp) which are hard to resist. I think their turnip cakes were better too. But Moon Kee’s shiu mai were a shade better imo, and they have a wider selection comparable to Chinatown, plus carts, which are fun! (The other uptown contender is Tri Dim, but it’s too fancy for me for when I have a plain old dim sum craving :joy:)

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Probably I’m just being lazy, as Jing Fong is right up the street from me!

For me one of the big differences is the excellent roast meat at moon kee which I don’t recall seeing at jf. I believe moon kee is the only place on the uws (and ues) selling roast meat unless one counts Ollie’s, which I’ve found mediocre at best.


Great to see everyone!

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I agree! Wish I had tasted more than the duck, but the duck was really fantastic. You have a point: no roast meats at JF, and most of what you get at Ollie’s is not good. I would definitely go back for that roast duck alone!

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The roast pork I had was very, very good… at least as good as Big Wong on Mott St (my personal standard) and perhaps a bit more tender.

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Yes! It was great to finally see some of my cohorts here in person.

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Big Wong is my favorite place for roast pork :yum:

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