My stomach has always been a pissy little bitch, and it keeps getting more intolerant as I get older. I can’t eat cake for breakfast like I could when I was 19. The magical combination of grease and salt in bad Chinese food makes me feel like I’m growing a chest burster from Alien in my digestive track. I can deal with avoiding desserts before 12pm, but I live in Williamsburg where most Chinese restaurants are subpar with one exception: M Shanghai Bistro. Everything at M Shanghai is freaking delicious, and their menu ranges from Kung Pow chicken to morning glory in smoked tea sauce. Wheather you get a standard dish or something completely absurd, the food is light but filling and made with incredibly fresh ingredients. The broccoli is never steamed to the consistency of pudding, and meat and tofu are fried to the perfect shade of golden brown. The seating is family style on long wooden tables vikings would be jealous of, but the friend tattooed wait staff won’t hurry you out the door. The only catch is if you’re broke, you need to eat at M Shanghai during daylight hours. Their dinners start at around ten bucks, but rice or noodle dishes are about $7 during lunch. Even better is their absurdly cheap, and absurdly long, happy hour. From 12pm to 7pm daily, beers and well drinks are $3 a pop. Get yourself an order of wantons or dumplings for $5, and let the carbonation from your beer be the only thing that leaves you feeling bloated.
M Shanghai Bistro and Den
129 Havemeyer Street, between S1 and Grand Street [Williamsburg, Brooklyn]
Open Monday to Sunday, 12pm to 12am
Lunch menu served 12pm to 4pm daily
Happy hour from 12pm to 7pm daily