The Chinese Mid-Autumn Festival, also known as the Moon Festival and the Mooncake Festival, falls on this Sunday, the 30th. While to the Chinese and Vietnamese it symbolizes the fall and harvest time, it also means plenty of parties, feasts, and festivities for New Yorkers.
Downtown, at the Yunnan restaurant Lotus Blue, a 10-course Moon Festival Banquet will commence on Sunday for $88. For this lavish dinner, executive chef Kian Lam Kho will serve stir-fried lobster with green Sichuan peppercorn, crispy chicken with pu’erh tea, pea shoots in peanut broth, and the traditional mooncakes, though his version comes flavored with rose petal and pistachios. They also offer a vegetarian option with lotus root soup and Yunnan pseudo ginseng, fried purple yam, and hot and sour wood ear soup.
At the New Amsterdam Market by the South Street Seaport, they feature Asian-inspired foods by guest chefs and market venues, including chef Simpson Wong from Wong and Wasan. Brooklyn Cured will make banh mi, Home by the Range has tom kha gai down, and Black Tree Sandwich will whip up bulgogi. If you just want an excuse to gorge on traditional mooncakes all day, you can pick some up at Fay Da Bakery.
Finally, what is a festival without a parade? At Sara Roosevelt Park (between Canal Street and Forsyth Street) the 10th Annual Autumn Moon Festival and Children’s Lantern Parade will commence at 11am and go until 5pm, which includes traditional performances, food stalls and a glorious dragon cake made by people from the Cake Boss that will feed 1,000 people after the parade. Now that, is a cake to celebrate.