A “cheap date night” at Myers + Chang is the perfect way to break up the otherwise mundane work week. On Mondays and Tuesdays they feature a special dinner menu with options such as Netflix and Chill, Tango Lessons or Long Walk on the Beach.
Myers + Chang is one of our favorite restaurants in Boston. Joanne Chang and Karen Akunowicz make a dynamite team. Joanne also owns the well-known Flour Bakery + Cafe around the city. If you haven’t been yet, you’re missing out on a significant part of life. Cancel your plans and get to Flour. I personally recommend the Sticky Buns. Also, don’t bring a Starbucks cup in there - Joanne will call you out on it. (Sorry Joanne!)
Anyway, back to Myers + Chang. We have been here several times but never during the week. We made reservations as per usual - never go anywhere without a reservation unless you are a ninny. Plus, you will never get in here without one. The staff is the nicest in the city. As you walk through the restaurant to your table every single person greets you. As you walk out, they all wish you a good evening. It’s incredible. Know of anywhere else where they do this?
Sitting at the bar is key to the experience. The kitchen is open to allow for guests to watch the magic happen. We sat four inches from the plates. We could feel the heat of the flames on the stove. It’s the best seat in the house, hands down. Plus, we got to marvel at Karen in her element. She works quietly yet purposefully running the show. As every good chef should, she does the final check on everything that goes out to make sure it’s done right. The place has a retro-Asian yet modern vibe and all around you can hear tables of people talking, eating and marveling at the food.
All that and a gender-neutral restroom that pays homage to Prince.
Pineapple Express is our go-to drink. It has just a few simple ingredients - pineapple vodka, and thai basil. Perfection - light and smooth. You can’t just have one. My friend also got a Wonky Donkey -a twist on a Moscow mule, complete with a strawberry.
The Feature Film:
Sitting on top of an old Asian newspaper menu, our Netflix and Chill meal featured: a green papaya salad with mint, palm sugar, peanuts; Korean bbq sloppy joe with kimchee cukes, sweet potato chips; spicy lamb biang biang noodles with fresh tofu, chili vinaigrette, hot bean paste; and ming’s market greens - Chinese broccoli with fermented tofu, sliced garlic and white rice.
This was the best meal I’ve ever had at Myers + Chang. It was spicy. It was fresh. It was flavorful. I am not a huge papaya person but this papaya salad was fresh and crunchy and I would compare it to an Asian cole slaw. The bbq sloppy jo was packed with flavor and the meat was cooked perfectly - super tender with a nice sour crunch from the pickle. The sweet potato chips were salty and crispy and I wished there was a bigger mound of them on my plate. Those biang biang noodles - pow pow pow. Super hot and spicy, crispy tofu and wide flat noodles like a pappardelle (Italian) noodle. And how could I forget the CHINESE BROCCOLI. This is my new true love. Wow. That sauce could be smeared on everything. I wish I asked Karen to bottle it for me. It was fresh and salty and garlic-y and light and savory. Chinese broccoli from Karen is foodgasm heaven. When you die you hope they bury you with this dish.
Last time we were here for my friend’s birthday we discovered what I will refer to as the Holy Grail of desserts, otherwise more commonly known as Michelle's affogato: frozen Vietnamese espresso, chocolate cake + mousse, caramelized espresso. It is layered perfection. Each time you hit a new layer you think you have reached heaven only to discover there is another mysterious layer beneath it. The picture does not even begin to describe this masterpiece of a dessert.
Everything came out as it was ready - as it should be. The waitstaff is attentive and the meal is leisurely and you never feel rushed to pay and leave.
Karen was nominated for a James Beard award and there isn’t a more deserving person. You are a culinary goddess, Karen. Thank you for your creative cooking genius. This city wouldn’t be the same without you. We look forward to many more mind-blowing meals.
OOOOO’H - our highest
Next time you feel like living - go to Myers + Chang. It is not just a meal, it’s a gastronomic experience.