UPPER WEST SIDE, NYC | Ever since I had my first (or second) proper banh mi sandwich at Momofuku's Ma Peche over five years ago, I vowed to keep track of any other culinary endeavors empire head David Chang would charitably offer a viably grateful city.
Only the throngs and long lines of other Momofuku fans deterred me and my default NYC lack of patience from trying out the often written about and praised Momofuku Milk Bar.
This past year, up until this summer, I was able to (finally) try the revered crack pie at one Urbanspace food event, and later, at another Urbanspoon event, a variety of Milk Bar cookies.
And now, having finally visited a brick-and-mortar outpost, on the Upper West Side, I can confirm what I had hoped were only literally unusual circumstances: I am surprisingly not a fan of Momofuku Milk Bar.
Admittedly, I don't have as much of a sweet tooth as most, but have spent a lifetime enjoying—and making—an assortment of desserts, pastries, and confections.
But the crack pie and cookies taste predominantly of mostly sugar and butter, and more sugar. The famed cereal milk, which I finally tried at the UWS outpost, is more evocative of early morning breakfasts of my youth in theory than in experience, at best representing the proverbial "cherry on the cake", without having had the cake.
New to my knowledge, Milk Bar also serves somes savory items as well, highly promoted among them "bombs", that are small, palm-sized food-stuffed bread pockets. On this occasion I ordered the "Home Run" (I think that's what they are/were called), which was a pretzel bun stuffed with hot dog and mustard.
Not as dry as an actual pretzel, yet not as hard-edged either, the bun encased a small section of frankfurter only discernible by mouthfeel as its flavor was completely obscured by the disproportionate amount of very heady—and yet slightly gelatenous—mustard it drowned in.
Guessing all I have left to judiciously sample at Milk Bar is the likewise highly regarded soft-serve ice cream, but will far more likely be sating my next Momofuku fix with a roast duck rice bowl or fried chicken sandwich.
MOMOFUKU MILK BAR | 561 Columbus Ave., New York, NY 10024 | (347) 577-9504 | milkbarstore.com