Sparklers in your noodles included
Cardi B and Nicki Minaj might have a patchy friendship history, but the pair do still have something in common: the rappers are both massive fans of cult Chinese restaurant Philippe by Philippe Chow.
“Money” rapper and Fashion Nova collaborator Cardi B is so into the NY eatery – run by its titular Hong Kong chef – that she’s called it her “favorite restaurant in the world”, celebrating the launch of her Invasion of Privacy album release with friends at a table there, where the margaritas flowed all night.
Cardi B is reportedly a fan of their specialty $85 Peking duck, as well as the $16 Fortune Cookie Red Velvet Cake, which sounds like it would have taken care of any sweet-toothed pregnancy cravings before baby Kulture arrived.
Minaj also visits the restaurant frequently and has celebrated her birthday there. Philippe Chow has even been immortalized on one of her tracks. In “Rake It Up,” Yo Gotti raps, “I’m at Philippe Chow, I got a Patek on.”
Minaj’s manager, Manny Halley, got in on the Peking duck action (it was listed among the best in the city) by buying into the restaurant. Rihanna also loves Philippe Chow, celebrating her grandfather’s birthday there back in 2014. It’s also popular with Jay-Z, Beyonce, Anna Wintour, and Matt Damon.
In the name of journalism (and delicious food) Insider ventured to Philippe on a snowy night to find out exactly why celebs love it so much.
At first glance, the Upper East Side restaurant seems like a strange choice for A-listers; it’s frequented nightly by more of a Gossip Girl crowd, with plenty of uptown parents, finance bros in puffer vests, and date night couples with an age gap. But hip-hop music plays as the dishes are wheeled out, making it far from the typical low-key Chinese restaurant. The same goes for the noodles, which are decorated with nightclub sparklers.
Post-scallion pancakes and crispy fried tofu, Insider contemplated ordering the speciality birthday cake, an 11-layer, $95 creation, made with milk chocolate, cotton, edible balloons, and sparklers but instead opted for Cardi B’s favorite red velvet cake, instead, which is far more reasonable (although the Instagram-friendly Cotton Candy Baked Alaska was certainly tempting.)
The verdict? Fun, flashy and definitely worth a visit.
No sightings of Cardi and Nicki Minaj when we went – though perhaps they could hit it up again for a cozy dinner a-deux.