Food: Neon Dining at the Lucky Bee

Nestled away on Broome Street glows a neon pink storefront. It’s the hippest new restaurant in New York’s Lower East Side. At the helm of husbands and co-owners, Rupert Noffs and Chef Matty Bennett, the Lucky Bee offers a seasonal menu of Southeast Asian delicacies using farm-to-table ingredients.

The décor is meticulously designed by Noffs with a vibrant palate and a fun range of unique art that sets the modern trendy vibe in this lower Manhattan locale. A flamingo-shaped pink neon light sits at the front of the open-format kitchen under a pink parasol and plants hanging from the ceiling. Alternating pink and green tables line the wall under mirrors decorated with the words, “We love boys who love soy and girls who love ginger.” Well, who doesn’t?

Filip Wolak

Filip Wolak

Start with the Honey Bee My Baby, a vodka-based cocktail with chai honey and bee pollen on the Karma Cocktail list. To make you feel virtuous, the Lucky Bee donates $1 from each Karma Cocktail to the New York Beekeepers Association.

A favorite of Barbra Streisand, the twice cooked pork hock bao bun with hoisin, cucumber, and chili relish turns out to be the real deal. But vegans get to have their fun, too. The smashed cucumber salad with dill pickle, fried peanuts, sweet rice, and coconut milk is a great appetizer, and won’t spoil your appetite for the star attraction: a kaho soi curry of organic chicken with sweet and spicy egg noodles and house chili. For the vegan in the party, the green curry of market vegetables with pickled mustard greens hits the spot.

Lucky Bee Instagram

Lucky Bee Instagram

But leave room for the banana pudding layered beneath tapioca with a toasted marshmallow topping. It’s a  delectable culmination, and as aesthetically pleasing as the pinkwashed brick walls around it.

With its hip neon décor and semi-nightlife atmosphere, the Lucky Bee is a new kind of dining experience. Noffs and Bennett are perfect hosts, greeting their customers throughout their meals like family at Thanksgiving dinner. Think of it as new age dining with a timeless sense of community that never goes out of style.

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