Outcome: Hung Jury
Ratio Decidendi: Decent CBD option for handmade noodles, but the similarly-named Chinese Noodle Restaurant remains the benchmark.
Scope of inquiry: Beef Noodle Soup ($9.50), Pancake with beef filling ($10), BBQ Lamb Skewers ($5 for 2), Sauteed Chicken with Red Chilli ($15.80)
Case Note: Expectations were set when I was told “this is the best I’ve got” in response to a call for noodle joint suggestions in the city – but sadly they weren’t quite met. Certainly not a bad spot for handmade noodles, but not quite the same level as Chinese Noodle Restaurant which isn’t far from here.
On the plus side you can get your noodles with traditional lamb skewers (below-right) that are marinated with cumin, chilli and pepper – which I tend to think of as ‘Asian chicken salt’. The skewers at Uighur Cuisine on Dixon St are probably better but these aren’t a bad rendition either.
The sauteed chicken and beef pancake were good volume fillers but weren’t particularly memorable. The chicken was slightly overcooked/dry but I thought they got the dosage of Szechuan peppers bang on – enough for a bit of a kick, but not so heavy handed like some other places where you’re left with a zingy, tongue numbing sensation that renders your taste buds inert.
Obiter Dicta: Despite the less than glowing review, I think this experience was coloured by the knowledge of something better. Had I not been to Chinese Noodle Restaurant, I may have been more positive – you can definitely tell this place is authentic from the staff and the other diners around you.