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New York Fries
M002b, B1, Sino-Ocean Taikoo Li Chengdu, 8 Central Shamao St.
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Susan Johnson (more chengdu)
The first branch of a familiar chain restaurant brings the same kind of joy as the arrival of an old friend from home, and we were particularly happy to see a New York Fries open up near downtown. New York Fries is the first fast food option around that eschews bagged frozen fries in favour of hand cut fresh potatoes, double cooking them to order. Customers can top the basic fries with ketchup or their signature Cajun or California seasoning (which were not yet in stock when we dropped in, but on their way). Gravy, cheese sauce or sour cream can be ordered on the side.

The franchise is named after a city south of the 49th parallel but belies its Canadian origins by offering poutine, the much loved gut bomb that tops french fries with cheese and meat sauce or gravy. We ordered NYF's Basic Poutine and got a cup of fresh fries topped with chopped up, melting cheese and shiny chocolate brown gravy settling like sludge into the pile. It ate like a real poutine too, with the crispy salty fries dominating the first few bites and succumbing into to a casserole-like mush near the bottom of the cup. They don't offer all of the poutine options that might be in your home NYF, alas no butter chicken or pulled pork poutine. However, they do offer a meat sauce version besides the basic cheese and gravy poutine.

There are big hot dogs on the menu, basic or topped with cheese or chili, which we can't wait to try. The toppings bar had a very good mustard, chopped onion, pickled peppers and chopped tomatoes. The shop was a bit tough for us to find at first since it's in a hall where most of the shops were still being fitted out and decorated. It is near the Chunxi road subway stop on the lower level of Tai Koo Li. Poutine 28RMB; hot dogs 25RMB. The music videos playing on the TV in the small dining room need at least a PG rating.

New York Fries
New York Fries