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Bring in Da Funk!

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Not so the skate panggang, a tender wing served on a banana leaf with a healthy dose of fishy sambal smeared on top. If that’s too pungent for you, you might also steer clear of the Chinese broccoli, or at least eat around the chunks of salted fish that come with it. Noodles and soup selections have a lot more going on than the menu makes out: Clay-pot chicken is a corn-starch-enriched casserole with tofu and more salted fish. Java mee is a beautifully spiced curry with shrimp, chewy egg noodles, and those tiny dried anchovies the kitchen’s so fond of.

The wine list teems with enticing German and Austrian selections, but many seem overpriced for such a low-key joint. The few desserts—fried bananas, a couple variations on flavored ice—come off as a bit of an afterthought, but it’s hard to compete with (or even complement) the powerful flavors that precede them. Fatty Crab, in all its non-fusion, food-focused glory, is a bone-gnawing, crab-leg-sucking kind of place. Even a scene, in its own way—and ours.

Fatty Crab
Address:643 Hudson St., nr. Horatio St.; 212-352-3590
Hours: Noon to Midnight Sunday, Tuesday, and Wednesday; Noon to 4 a.m. Thursday, Friday, and Saturday.
Prices: $3 to $17 (chili crab, $28).
Ideal Meal:
RP: Oyster omelet, fatty duck, skate panggang, nasi lemak, broccoli with salted fish.
RR: Green mango, pork ribs, and short-rib rendang.
Note: Fatty Crab might have the world’s foremost collection of mismatched, back-breakingly hard antique wooden chairs. The bar is a more spacious and comfortable spot to eat.


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