Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Shojo: Asian Fusion and Craft Cocktails in Boston's Chinatown

Chinatown in Boston doesn't only have hole-in-the-wall Chinese and Vietnamese restaurants like Gourmet Dumpling House or Gene's Chinese Flatbread Cafe, but you can also find a hip Asian-fusion restaurant with solid cocktails at Shojo.

You'll find dishes like Chicken and Waffle v3.0 (five spice butter, syrup $13)
Their chicken and waffle is made using Hong Kong style waffles. Egg puffs!

While I don't think it makes that big of a difference in taste, I still like the fact that they use Hong Kong waffles. They also make the chicken boneless for the dish.

Charred Eggplant Ttukbokki (Korean rice cake, red chili, mozzarella, $8)

The Korean rice cakes are mixed with spicy eggplant, topped with cheese and baked until the cheese is melted.
I quite enjoyed this one, and thought it was pretty unique. Like an eggplant parmigiana but spicy and made with rice cakes. The portion was more than enough for a meal, as well, and quite generous for the price.

Wu Tang Tiger-style Ribs (Thai basil, shallot, peanuts, $8)
We liked the ribs which were really tender.

Now, a lot of people also come to Shojo for cocktails.
They have a solid, Asian-inspired cocktail list, divided into two sections. The citrus-based cocktails had drinks like Kamehameha with Thai chili infused vodka, Fire Puncher vodka, coconut milk, and lemon ($11). Pictured to the left is the Mara Jungle Bird (Black Strap rum, bittermelon campari, pineapple, lime, $11). Look at that garnish! Isn't it fun? It reminds me of a kappa ...

For a more spirit-forward cocktail, I tried the Yakuza Old Fashioned made with Nikka Coffey Grain whisky, bitter caramel, and bitters ($13)
Suckling Pig Bao, smoked bbq sauce, kimchi, jalapeno ($9)
They had at least two different bao on the menu (seems to still be a big thing here in Boston). There was a bit too much sauce on mine, in my opinion, which overwhelmed the pork somewhat, but I enjoyed the crispy skin.

Thai Soup and Shrimp balls (coconut lime broth, squid ink shrimp dumplings, enoki mushrooms, $8)
The soup is like tom kha. Those black balls you see are the squid ink shrimp dumplings, which were surprisingly pretty light compared to the soup's flavors.

Bang Bang Bolognese (hand-slapped noodles, beef, Szechuan peppercorn, $11)
The noodles are for those looking for a more "authentic" Chinese flavors. The handmade noodles were long and wide, the beef sauce lightly spicy.

One thing I like about Boston is that I can get solid cocktails along with good Asian food at quite a number of places, including Shojo. Some of their fusion dishes are pretty fun and unusual - even if not all were homeruns - I especially liked the tteokbokki. They always play some kung fu movies in the background, which kept me entertained when eating alone at the bar.

9A Tyler St
Boston, MA 02111
(617) 423-7888
Shojo on Urbanspoon


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