The Asian burrito has rolled into town. That's how Wrapmi owner Sam Ho, a veteran of the Boston Chinatown restaurant scene, describes his take-out creation. It consists of a main filling, like crispy chicken, wrapped with vegetables and a mayonnaise-based sauce in a rice crepe and organic seaweed roll. The result strays far enough from traditional sushi wraps to deserve a different name.
But it's no new concept. In 2006, New York celeb chef and Momofuku founder David Chang rolled up kimchi puree, edamame, and pork shoulder into a tortilla and called it an Asian burrito, naming his new restaurant after the popular Korean lettuce wrap ssam. Ho's model, on the other hand, is tidier, faster, and cheaper. He says it's made to eat on the go, with one hand. Rather than borrowing from Korean cuisine, Wrapmi draws inspiration from pocket-sized, triangular sushi wraps found in Japanese and Taiwanese convenience stores.
Wrapmi offers nicer digs than any convenience store we've encountered. And its bright décor, combined with a pseudo–feng shui table arrangement that seats less than 10, perfectly fits its food's mantra — trendy, simple, Asian. The spicy chicken roll ($4.75), for example, is tender fried chicken wrapped with onions, cucumber, and corn, a meaty and savory core inside a crunchy outer shell. It's a straightforward recipe, but the texture is delightfully complex, especially with the sweet, soft crepe. Meanwhile, the salty pepper salmon ($5.50), smoked duck ($5.75), and ginger beef ($5.75) varieties demonstrate Ho's know-how with Cantonese cuisine. There's even a roll and frozen-yogurt combo ($8.50) — blueberry swirl is a must-try.
In an established food scene like Chinatown, innovation is always a pleasant surprise, so kudos to Ho. For a place that takes on fast food, Chinese take-out, and frozen-yogurt chains all at once, Wrapmi does pretty well.
Find Them: 66 Kneeland St, Boston | 617.338.8588 or wrapmi.com | Open every day, 11 am to 8 pm