Before Mission Chinese Food launched into the stratosphere, there was Mission Street Food, the reimagined restaurant concept from Anthony Myint and Karen Leibowitz. What started out as a taco cart selling PB&Js (pork belly and jicama tacos) quickly became a semi-permanent pop-up within a dingy Chinese restaurant called Lung Shan, and eventually morphed, with the help of chef Danny Bowien, into the Mission Chinese Food we all know and love today.
Eight months after the opening of their newest restaurant, The Perennial, Leibowitz and Myint are throwing a nostalgic, one night only pop-up featuring the people and food of MSF. “It’s about how far we’ve come, and also connecting with our roots,” Leibowitz told Eater.
To do that Myint and Leibowitz have invited back some of their past cooks, including former Lucky Peach editor-in-chief Chris Ying, Ted Fleury and Jordan Grosser (Alembic, Stag Dining Club), Carlo Espinas (Comstock Saloon), and other talented friends around town. “The original idea of MSF was to get people who weren’t necessarily chefs to do their thing, and have a forum for their creativity,” said Leibowitz. “It’s a one time only, now or never kind of thing.” And, in an effort to really get back to their roots, there will be karaoke in the bar area, with tunes from MCF GM David Cabello.
The dinner will be served a la carte, though Leibowitz says the pro move is to order the entire menu and share it all with your group. Each chef will feature a few dishes of their own, including OG dishes like the PB&J.
The one-night-only affair goes down Monday, October 24 from 5:30 p.m.- 10 p.m.; reservations can be made through Reserve. Note: The Perennial will not offer its usual menu that night, only MSF.