Chung King, at 606 Jackson St. (known as Jiang Nan in Chinese but served nothing but Cantonese fare), closed several weeks ago, and recently I noticed some very intensive remodeling underway inside.
Today I discovered that a Fictitious Business Statement for “Z & Y Bistro” was filed for that address a month ago. When open, that will make for three Sichuan Restaurants in that block, with another just around the corner on Kearny.
“Published on Aug 31, 2017At Z & Y Bistro, we focus on complete dining experience. We are a new Chinese restaurant located at 606 Jackson Street in San Francisco Chinatown. We serve noodle, rice, yakitori, beer and wine. Come and experience our brand new restaurant!”
The teased “yakitori” , with a wedge of lemon and coarse chili flakes, is perhaps an attempt to expand skewers (Shaokao) to a mainstream audience, using higher quality ingredients and less of that lighter fluid charcoal and msg flavor. Maybe that’s a good thing, but I hope they don’t class up the grilled bread at skewer places, which is already perfect in its marshmallow looking, Maillard reaction prone, delightfulness.
We got the lanzhou style beef ramen soup, fish with green peppercorns, chicken with explosive chili peppers, chilled tofu, and spicy dumplings. The fish was a highlight for me, and the herbaceous nature of the beef noodle soup was very good too.
So they are actually doing Japanese and Chinese stuff, it seems Z&Y’s greatest hits. Do you know if the noodles are hand-pulled (I can’t think of a Japanese restaurant that offers ramen with hand pulled noodles).
It’s a little disappointing what they offer only one Chinese noodle soup, and not a spicy one at that. I’d venture that they didn’t even get the “Lanzhou” lamian right; the broth looks a bit too brown and opaque to me.
A true Lanzhou la mian broth should be " ‘one clear, two white, three red, four green, five yellow’, they stand for clear soup,white radish,red chilli oil,green garlik stem, yellow [alkaline] noodles."
I went here for dinner. It’s a “hipper” restaurant than the original Z&Y, with darker lighting, a bar, fancier furniture, and music. Kind of an odd combo of some Z&Y staples, like the chicken with explosive chili pepper, along with yakitori skewers and ramen. They also serve wine, beer, and I think sake.
Had the spicy dumplings ($8.95) which was pork and shrimp wontons in a chili sauce. Pretty good but not particularly remarkable. Also had the chicken liver yakitori ($6.95 for two fairly generous skewers) which was also pretty good. The livers were cooked nicely and still pink and tender in the middle. Also had the fish with green peppercorns ($18.95), and like @anthony I thought this was the highlight of this meal. Tender fish in a mostly clear flavorful broth. The fish filets were infused with the savoriness from the broth and the Sichuan peppercorns gave it a slight numbing effect. Slightly spicy with lots of umami and ma la flavor. Doesn’t say what type of fish it is on the menu. I hadn’t had this dish before at the original Z&Y so I can’t compare. Would definitely get this again.