Sunday, October 2, 2022

芋见BAO / Meet Bao opening Craig St. location soon.

The second location for Oakland restaurant 芋见BAO, formally known as Meet Bao is set to open soon a few blocks away on Craig St. Signage is up for its soft opening, and the restaurant was cleared to open recently by the Allegheny County Health Department. It will be located at 400 S. Craig St. (map) which was home to Yumwok / Lulu's Noodles for several decades before closing in June.

芋见BAO opened at its current location at 114 Atwood St. in early 2021 and offers a menu of dim sum, noodle dishes, bubble tea, and more. A Pittsburgh City-Paper review last September wrote:
Dim sum are small dishes that originated in Guangzhou in southern China. The phrase typically calls to mind dumplings, buns, starchy or glutinous cakes, and light desserts, and 芋见BAO’s dim sum menu covers all of these. To try as wide a variety as possible, I ordered with my partner and we shared the dim sum dishes, which came with enough pieces for us to enjoy at least one or two of everything.

The name of the restaurant refers to 芋, or taro, a tropical root vegetable common in African, South Asian, and Oceanic cuisines. While 芋见 translates directly to “seeing taro,” it’s also a homophone for “meet” or “come across,” creating a secondary phrase “come across bao,” or “come across steamed buns.”

Living up to its name, 芋见BAO has several bao options, including Pork Buns 肉包, Vegetable Buns 菜包, and Pork and Dry Bamboo Buns 笋干肉包. Each comes with six buns and has the option between steamed or pan fried preparation. I opted for steamed Pork Buns 肉包, and the pillowy dough and subtle sweetness combined with a more robust savory flavor in the meat filling was an excellent start to the meal.