Momofuku Ko Vet Sam Yoo Opens Golden Diner in Chinatown Tomorrow

Golden Diner. Photo: Melissa Hom

Poised to open tomorrow, initially for breakfast and lunch only, Golden Diner is the brainchild of Major Food Group and Momofuku Ko vet Samuel Yoo. The main attraction is newfangled diner food with an Asian accent — but not a whole lot of it. Yoo, you see, may be a diner nostalgist and a diner enthusiast, but he’s also a diner reformist. The problem with the genre, he says, is that the menus, like subway wait times, are too long. “You can’t do good food that way.” Thus his kitchen will attempt to cover the diner essentials and cater to the tastes of the Chinese, Latin, and increasingly veggie-happy neighborhood but do it with a tightly edited menu of just a couple dozen dishes or so. Still, with everything from matcha coffee cakes to pastrami-spiced-portobello quesadillas, the range seems wide enough.

Matcha-flavored coffee cake with a streusel top. Photo: Melissa Hom
Avocado toast with lemongrass, pickled shallots, fresh turmeric, galangal, and Thai basil was inspired by the Indonesian congee dish, bubur ayam. Photo: Melissa Hom
This BEC comes on a housemade squishy scallion milk bun. Photo: Melissa Hom
Matzo ball soup. Photo: Melissa Hom
The Golden Diner breakfast plate. Photo: Melissa Hom
The barley bibimbap bowl is dressed with gochujang vinaigrette. Photo: Melissa Hom
The cross-cultural and vegetarian mushroom Reuben quesadilla. Photo: Melissa Hom
A chicken katsu club sandwich with Bulldog sauce. Photo: Melissa Hom
What’s a diner without a cheeseburger deluxe? Photo: Melissa Hom
Instead of salami and provolone, there’s charred, marinated yuba and “zesty tofu sauce” in the Vegitalian hero. Photo: Melissa Hom
The breakfast burrito is filled with eggs, cheese, beans, and potatoes. Photo: Melissa Hom

123 Madison St., at Market St.; no phone;

*A version of this article appears in the January 21, 2019, issue of New York Magazine. Subscribe Now!

Momofuku Ko Vet Sam Yoo Opens Golden Diner in Chinatown