Forget about the “Mongolian barbecue” spots that are a staple of suburban strip malls everywhere — those pick-what-you-want-to-grill joints don’t have anything to do with Mongolia. If you want a taste of real Mongolian food, head to downtown Oakland, where Enkhtuguldur “Togi” Sukhbaatar serves a simple menu highlighting the country’s wheat-based, meat-centric cuisine. Try the buuz, which are steamed dumplings that resemble rustic, oversized xiao long bao, or the khuu-shur — fried meat buns that are similarly juicy. One of the most enjoyable dishes is the tsu-van, a kind of noodle stir-fry that features toothsome handmade noodles that are steamed and then pan-fried until they develop charred, crispy edges.

— Luke Tsai


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