Sunday, September 13, 2009
Do You Know the Noodle Man?
Do you know the noodle man? The one that works on Smith Street, in Chinatown?
I was introduced to his wonderful restaurant by my pal Sarah. The name is Lan Zhou La Mian, and it's at 19 Smith, about halfway down the street. It's easy to miss, so look for a little nook of a place, with loads of snapshots on the walls. The pictures are of the Noodle man, and hundreds and hundreds of patrons that come into his humble little place for some of the most delicious and fresh noodles I've ever had. Lan Mian translates from Chinese to mean "hand pulled". He makes dozens and dozens of fresh batches each day, right in front of you. I ordered the vegetable noodles, and the pan fried dumplings. They were super yummy...the noodles are tender and light, but still have a "to the tooth" bite to them. I brought Larry back on saturday afternoon for a late lunch, and he enjoyed the minced pork with bean curd sauce, the dish that they are most famous for. Lar thought he was getting soup noodles, similar to Pho, so when his noddles arrived "dry" he was surprised. He still liked them, but wants to branch out and try one of their soup noodle dishes next time.
After almost two years of living here (what?!?!) I think it's pretty cool I can still be delighted to happen upon these little gems. Or have smart friends in the know! Even though it's in a pretty touristy part of town, I still get a sense that it is 'real singapore'. The place is not fancy in the least, but the food is good, cheap and honest. And the Noodle Man always has a smile for you...can't get better than that. I think Mr. Noodle just acquired two more regulars.
I dare you to not hum the tune "Oh do you know the Muffin Man" now...go ahead try.