Overrated? Overpriced? Back to Momofuku (Featuring: Soft-Shelled Crab Buns)

I admire Momofuku for its food, yes, but also for its sense of humor. Look at what was on the door Thursday night when we went there after class:


[For those whose vision precludes them from viewing pictures, it says: “Momofuku’s Overrated and Overpriced!” – Starchefs.com intern.]

I like that this is on their door. No pretension here—here’s what people are saying about us, and we can handle it. It does beg the question, though: is Momofuku overrated and overpriced?

Well, in my book definitely not overrated. I think the food is really terrific: when Momofuku is mentioned I say “ooh! let’s go!” even if I’m doing something important, like saving a baby from a comet.

But when it comes to whether or not it’s overpriced, it may be. I know many who think so: my cohorts at dinner certainly did. But there’s a difference between being expensive because you’re taking advantage of people and being expensive because your ingredients cost more, because your preparation is exceptional. I think Momofuku falls into this latter category: they’re not con artists, they’re passionate about what they do and in order to serve you the best you have to pay a little more.

I paid a little more on Thursday when I ordered this seasonal treat for my dinner: soft-shell crab buns!


This was an extraordinarily unusual dinner, to say the least. They’re not eating this in military school, I’ll tell you that. I keep writing sentences, that go like this.

The soft-shelled crab in the bun worked really well. I liked the combination of flavors and textures. The chips that came with it were fiery hot but for my latino compadres they were amateur stuff. “This is amateur stuff,” they said.

In conclusion, Momofuku is still a place that makes me say “mmm” even before I arrive–I do not think it’s overrated, I do not think it’s unfairly overpriced. These are my thoughts. If you disagree, maybe they’ll post your comments on their door!

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