The pandemic has been a great loss for the world of dining. But for the world of delivery, it has been a win. Brooklyn darling Win Son, the Taiwanese restaurant that opened in 2016, and its sibling restaurant Win Son Bakery, is currently offering pick-up and delivery through Caviar. This, if you happen to live within a reasonable distance, is a definite win.
Win Son Bakery has its own cast of unforgettable items, including a millet mochi donut (as chewy and sweet as you might imagine), a red rice donut (in lipstick red), and a custard toast. You can also indulge in savory items, like fan tuan, which is a pork rice roll filled with egg, or a turnip cake, made with Benton’s ham and shrimp. There are clever breakfast sandwiches, like the cheeky nod to the New York classic, the bacon, egg, and cheese, but wrapped in a scallion pancake. If a finer marriage of cultures exists, I don’t want to know about it.
It doesn’t stop there. There is a smash burger, a chicken sandwich, and a fried chicken meal, in addition to non-alcoholic beverages, alcoholic beverages, and condiments (pineapple soy sauce for the absolute win).
Win Son has a much more curated menu, with full plates rather than snacky food. Fried eggplant with black vinegar and kefir will set your mouth a-tingle, as will roasted peanuts with Chinese five spice and prickly ash. A Guohua street salad comes with grilled shrimp, smoked peanuts, and golden raisins. Sesame noodles are complemented by black trumpet mushrooms and crunchy snow pea leaves, while a dish called Zhajiangmian combines Colorado lamb, yellow bean paste, and cucumber in a compelling bowl of flavors. Diners can expect some recurring elements: peanuts, cilantro, black vinegar, and chilis take center stage in the small-yet-ambitious menu.
Even the cocktails are a little bit hot. Take, for instance, the Vaquero Otro, a cocktail designed for four people, which blends together a chili-infused Scotch, vermouth, and bitters. The menu is small enough that you can order every single item on it (though you might be hard-pressed to eat it all by yourself). To prevent waste, the forward-thinking Win Son and Win Son Bakery provide no utensils or napkins with their orders, unless expressly asked.
Before the pandemic, to get a seat at a popular restaurant took time and patience. You had to wait it out. It was part of the grind. Delivery has become, then, part of the grand unseating of that tradition, and it’s worth noting that there’s an everyman appeal to that: You can have your cake (or, as it were, your scallion pancake bacon, egg, and cheese) and eat it, too. These are the days.