What are Anthony Zhao’s favorite ingredients?
Very good beef and pork belly are two of my favorites. But, in general, as long as it’s fresh, I’ll use it. There are a few things you can’t get outside of China, like hairy crab, and there are a few things that you can get but are more difficult to find, like bamboo shoots, which I love. But really, you can get anything in the U.S.; there are so many things you can’t find outside the States — simple things like USDA beef and romaine lettuce. You can get [romaine lettuce] in China, but it’s of different quality — it tastes like a completely different plant. In San Francisco, romaine is so crunchy and sweet; in Shanghai it just tastes bitter.