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One of Flushing’s Most Popular Vendors Is Bringing Rice Rolls to Manhattan

Joe’s Steam Rice Roll will open in the Canal Street Market

Joe Rong of Joe’s Steam Rice Roll Joe DiStefano

Flushing-based Joe’s Steam Rice Roll is bringing its wildly popular rice rolls to Chinatown’s Canal Street Market.

The original hawker stand, counter, and storefront spearheaded by Joe Rong is a recognized gem among Flushing’s Chinese food staples, and starting mid-October, the dim sum favorite will be available at the Chinatown food hall Canal Street Market, Rong says.

The new location inside 261 Canal St., between Broadway and Lafayette Street, will be permanent and replacing Nom Wah Kuai, the fast-casual concept started by Chinatown heavy-hitter Nom Wah Tea Parlor, market founder Philip Chong tells Eater. Nom Wah has since relocated its venue to the Market Line on the LES, which hasn’t opened yet.

rice roll
A rice roll from Joe’s
Photo by Joe DiStefano

Joe’s Steam Rice Roll has risen in popularity for its carefully prepared rice rolls: Unlike other places offering chang fen, as the dish is known in Cantonese, Rong uses an electric-powered stone mill imported from China to grind the rice for batter on a daily basis. He goes through over 40 pounds of rice a day at its Flushing spot, at 136-21 Roosevelt Avenue between Main and Union Streets.

The menu at his second outpost will be similar to the original, which features five versions of rice rolls, including Rong’s favorite of beef and egg. But expect an expanded menu here..

Chong says the Canal Street Market location will be bigger than the original. With Nom Wah Kuai’s departure, he was looking for a solid anchor for the popular new market. Joe’s Steam Rice Roll will be larger than the food hall’s average vendor, which usually spans about 300 square feet in size, he says.

The Canal Street Market opened last year and is home to vendors serving a range of food, including an Ippudo spin-off Kuro-Obi and Izakaya’s Samurice.

Canal Street Market

265 Canal Street, Manhattan, NY 10013 (646) 694-1655 Visit Website