Taiwan Beef Noodle House

by Ed Lau on January 18, 2008

Taiwan Beef Noodle

I once passed up a day at Six Flags to get a bowl of noodles. No, seriously.

As the story goes, it was my first time at the now defunct E3 (Electronic Entertainment Expo) in Los Angeles, CA. John Chow and I had driven down to LA to attend way back in 2003. It was a blast. The expo itself was fun but more than anything, the nightlife surrounding it was even better. It seemed like we went to a non-stop string of parties at all the LA hotspots. The best thing was, it was all free since we were press. Anyways, on our last day there, instead of going to Six Flags, I instead took our rental Chrysler 300 convertible for a drive around Los Angeles. With the top down, naturally.

I’ve been to LA many times since I was young and every time, I remember going to a certain noodle house in the Little Tokyo district that made the best Taiwanese noodles on Earth and I would always order the same thing: pork chop noodles. I wasn’t about to leave LA without visiting, even if it meant passing on roller coasters.

Because of the sort of mythical pedestal I’ve put that little restaurant on, it’s probably rather hard for any other Taiwanese noodle joint to come close but Taiwan Beef Noodle in Vancouver comes rather close. I went with John and Sarah this afternoon and was pleasantly surprised. I had passed by many times before since it’s on the way to campus but never bothered to try it out. John and Sarah both highly recommend this place.

Taiwan Beef Noodle

Dishes are simple but well made. These are our appetizers: kelp seaweed, chili cucumbers and spicy marinated pig’s ear. All of the above are very good. I know none of them sound particularly appetizing but don’t knock it till you’ve tried it. The seaweed is a very unique texture…crunchier than you’d expect and very good. The cucumber was a bit of a disappointment for me since I can personally make a better one but still, not bad at all. I’m sure some of you are thinking “Ewwww! Pig’s ear?” but seriously, this is one of my favorite foods. It’s a very springy, crunchy texture…much like eating jellyfish. However, if you happen to order any of these, order them separately and not through the $7.50 for 3 option like we did here. You get more for your money ordering them separately, even if it is $1.50 more for three dishes.

Taiwan Beef Noodle

This is a beef pancake, which is exactly as it sounds. A light green onion pancake wrapping beef, green onions and Hoisin sauce. The sweetness of the Hoisin sauce works great with the beef and green onions.

Taiwan Beef Noodle

The deep fried tofu is some of the best I’ve had. The crunchy fried layer is very thin and light and the tofu remains unbelievably soft.

Taiwan Beef Noodle

Our “main course” was the Taiwan Beef Brisket noodle, which comes in either spicy or not-spicy. I opted for the non-spicy and added my own hot sauce since sometimes these places think everyone has tongues of lead. The brisket, especially the pieces with some tendon stuck to them, were very tender and the soup, despite the appearance, wasn’t overly salty. The noodles were cook well and still springy. Definitely a great bowl of noodles.

Taiwan Beef Noodle

John and I also ordered some drinks, which came in some comically large (well, tall, rather) mugs. Word of advice, if you order any drink, ask them to make it at least half-sweet. I asked for half-sweet and it was still like they poured an entire sugar factory into it. John didn’t ask for any changes since he’s a psycho and can’t get enough sugar so I can only imagine how sweet his ridiculous pink strawberry milk tea was.

The bill for the three of us came to $45 after everything. That’s a bit more than usual since we tried a lot of different things but you can easily eat here for about $10 a person. Too bad they’re no longer open 24/7, though.

in Food and Fine Dining

{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

Malcolm Owen January 19, 2008 at 3:44 am

You know, I’m so glad I don’t do these “Photos of Food I’ve Eaten” posts. Eating out would mean photos of pizza, fries, an XL Bacon Double Cheeseburger from BK, a sausage and egg sandwich… Not exactly pretty to look at stuff. Probably highly unhealthy too. I really should eat out at better places sometime…

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Carl January 19, 2008 at 7:42 am

I got SO sick after eating there once… basically I was shitting the fraser river out of my asshole. I never went back after that.

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sir jorge January 19, 2008 at 9:39 pm

those are some amazing tall glasses

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Stephen January 19, 2008 at 11:59 pm

Ding Hao Taiwan Beef Noodle House in Coquitlam is better. Seriously.

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Michael Kwan January 21, 2008 at 1:01 pm

Maybe we should relocated dot com pho one week to there?

BTW, I’m loving that first pic Ed. Haha!

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