My first experience with Yun Nan Flavour was at its snack bar, also in Sunset Park, where we camped out on tiny stools slurping from giant bowls of steamy hot soup. At its new location, Yun Nan Flavour Garden, the restaurant has a more upscale feel. At least now you can slurp your soup at a table, most-likely shared with stangers.
Yunnan food is known for its spices and things can heat up rather quickly. Lamb stew served with thick rice noodles arrives in a pungent, spicy broth with lots of cilantro. My dining partner commented that it cleared out his sinuses. Don't like lamb? It's also available with braised chicken, beef or short ribs. Another favorite are the plump pork dumplings served in a hot and sour sauce. The sauce is so powerful it literally brought tears to my eyes thanks to a slick of chili oil floating on top.
Another dish worth seeking out is the "Crossing the Bridge" rice noodles. It is prepared tableside as slices of raw beef are plunged into a deep bowl of steamy broth. Vegetables and thick rice noodles, resembling spaghetti, are added last.
In addition to soup, the new Yun Nan is serving a number of rice and noodle dishes topped with things like braised pork stew, and a crispy meat sauce which comes with a warning that it may contain "organ" meat. Yes, there are a number of interesting meats to be found here. Ox stomach and pig ear are served lu mein style. Other dishes include spicy crab, chitterlings, and pig leg. Vegetarians can opt for a sliced seaweed salad, pickled cucumber and radish, along with hot & sour bean sprouts. Most dishes ring in at under ten bucks.
No matter how you slice it, Yun Nan packs a flavor punch.
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