Sunday, July 28, 2013

Shaolin Noodle House - Vancouver, BC

I've been travelling a lot recently and the beautiful city of Vancouver was my next stop. My brother lived there for about five years and told me about some of the restaurants that he used to frequently visit. I thought some of his choices should be featured on the blog, starting with one of his favorite Chinese restaurants, Shaolin Noodle House. Walking to the place where I'll be staying for the next few weeks, I unexpectedly passed by this old looking restaurant with red lanterns out in front.
Shaolin Noodle House is located on 656 West Broadway and is best known for their sliced or "cutting" noodles, named for the method of making the noodles. Cutting noodles are handmade and handcut rice flour noodles that were originally prepared by using a knife to cut the noodle sheet into slices. These noodles are apparently quite popular in many parts of China and can be either fried or served in broth.
Shaolin Noodle House has the appearance of a usual Chinese restaurant. When I say usual, I mean a slightly dirty kind of feel, lots of wooden tables, and traditional Chinese decor. According to my brother, they've had some instances with the food inspector in the past. Let just say they lived up to a normal Chinese restaurant.
I woke up from my nap and decided at 3 in the afternoon that I would get my first meal of the day. Since I missed breakfast and lunch I was famished so I decided that I would splurge and get two dishes. I chose the cutting noodles with chicken in a vegetable and chicken broth and the pork and bok choy dumplings as my brother suggested these were his favorites.
Cutting noodles with chicken in vegetable broth
The broth noodles came out steaming hot topped with bok choy and huge, thin slices of carrots. The thick noodles were cooked to a perfect al dente quality, which gave a nice chewy texture when biting into them. You could definitely tell that they were homemade as each noodle was different in size, length and shape. The vegetable and chicken broth was very tasty. It had a nice subtle flavor with just the right amount of salt seasoning. However, I was disappointed with the chicken, as it tasted quite bland and did not seem to be the best cut of meat. But all for a price of $7.95! What a great deal.
Pork and bok choy dumplings
The steamed dumplings came out quickly after. You have the choice of steamed or fried dumplings and either pork with chives or pork with bok choy. I decided on the small size of 12 steamed dumplings, rather than the large of 18. These were pretty much your standard dumplings; there wasn't anything very special or unique. The dumplings had meat and vegetables and a nice dough wrapping. I thought I'd be healthy today; maybe I will go back later this week to try their fried dumplings as I've heard good things. But in general, this was also a good deal for $7.95.

Overall, Shaolin Noodle House was a tasty spot. The service was quick and helpful but not too overwhelming. The portions are a good size as I was stuffed to the point of feeling uncomfortable, and the prices were also very reasonable. However, I am unsure if I would go out of my way back here JUST for the food; but if it happened to be on the way, I wouldn't think twice.


3.5/5 Erics

Sha Lin Noodle House 少林麵莊 on Urbanspoon

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