Calvin Trillin on His Chinatown Stand-bys, and Sarah ‘Tic-Tac-Toe Chicken’ Palin

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Yesterday a group of about 40 noshers followed The New Yorker's Calvin Trillin on his annual two-and-a-half-hour restaurant crawl from Cornelia to Chinatown. Between a history of New York immigration policy and some thoughts on cast-iron architecture, Trillin managed to slip in some political analysis: Sarah Palin is like Mott Street’s famous (now gone) tic-tac-toe-playing chicken, he said, because they were both so well trained.

The many who couldn't score a $100 ticket can still try the food: Trillin’s picks included the Vietnamese pork sandwich at Bánh Mì Saigon, potato and zucchini pizzas at Grandaisy Bakery, and cheap fried dumplings at 106 Mosco Street. As for his favorite Chinese restaurant in New York, Trillin says you probably haven’t heard of it: Young City Fish Balls, at Eldridge and Canal.