Today I want to introduce you to another of my favorite Chinese dishes. If you have been to Taiwan, then chances are you have at least tried it once.
niúròumiàn牛肉麵, beef noodle soup is easily one of the most popular local dishes, and you can order it just about anywhere. The quality will vary from stand to stand, or restaurant to restaurant, depending on the noodles it is served with, and the herbs and spices that are used to flavor the soup, so the flavor can differ drastically depending where you order it.
If you want to eat the best (in my opinion, of course) niúròumiàn牛肉麵 that Taiwan has to offer, then I suggest you try the two restaurants that I recommend below. The first, niúlǎodà牛老大, is located in the Shida Night Market shīdàyèshì師大夜市 in Taipei, just near NTNU.
(牛老大, located in the Shida Night Market in Taipei. Worth a vist…or three!)
This is the better of the two, in my opinion, as I really like the flavor of their hand-made noodles, and you know you are are getting the real deal because you can see their master noodle maker doing his thing right as you enter the restaurant. This in and of itself makes it a unique dining experience. The noodles are thick and chewy, and they make a big difference in the overall taste. Their soup is also really great, a little spicy, but not so much that people who don’t do hot food will be turned off.
(Just look at those chunks of beef! Yum!)
Though they have a full menu and offer a variety of dishes, pretty much everyone just orders the beef noodle soup, because it’s just that great! I have also tried their hóngyóuchǎoshǒu紅油炒手 which is also the best of this dish that I have had in Taiwan, so I’d imagine that their other food must be good too!
The other place that I highly recommend is a chain-store called sānshāngqiǎofú三商巧福, which I love and eat at regularly, as they have a location near one of the schools that I work at.
(This is the 三商巧福 near my school in Taoyuan county)
This is my fiances favorite, but as much as I like their niúròumiàn牛肉麵, I usually end up ordering their niúròushòuxǐfàn牛肉壽喜飯 because it just tastes awesome. It’s a simple dish consisting primarily of rice and beef, but the addition of ginger adds an extra kick that really compliments the taste. Plus, I always order a set meal with a side of kimchi(which usually gets stirred in with the rice, yum!). Also included in the set meal are a seaweed soup and a fountain drink of choice.
(Above, the beef noodle broth 牛肉湯麵 (no beef chunks), and below my favorite, 牛肉壽喜飯 (a beef and rice dish) served at 三商巧福)
Regardless of where you get your niúròumiàn牛肉麵, you should have access to an ample supply of pickled Chinese cabbage, suāncài酸菜, and I suggest you take advantage of it.
(A healthy serving of 酸菜, and there’s always more where that came from!)
It’s a really good compliment to the soup’s flavor. A lot of stores also refill soup for free! Take your time and enjoy! mànyòng慢用!——————————————————————————————————————————————————————
Chinese phrases of the day:
niúròumiàn牛肉麵= beef noodle soup
hóngyóuchǎoshǒu紅油炒手= dumplings served in a spicy sauce
niúròushòuxǐfàn牛肉壽喜飯= a beef and rice dish
suāncài酸菜=pickled Chinese cabbage
mànyòng慢用= take your time/enjoy
The first three pictures are taken from http://www.ipeen.com.tw as I didn’t have any photos of the restaurant on hand, and the rest are my own.