For those of you not familiar with this dish, it is made of stewed or red braised beef, beef broth, vegetables and wheat noodles. The size of the noodles will differ between stalls, you can also opt for a darker or light broth. I tended towards the darker broth which gave more depth of flavour.
Shan Xi Dao Xiao Mian specalises in hand cut noodles from a piece of dough straight into a pot of boiling water. But never really eaten the kind that is slivered off a block of dough by a flat piece of metal right before it comes to your table. The knife cut method is famous from Shan Xi, a part of China where they love noodles.
There are two types of broths which is on offer – dark beef noodle soup of a lighter tomato infused broth.
Noodles are as expected from hand cut noodles, chewy, shiny, uneven thick and thin, short and long Taiwanese know how to cook beef. to make it tender and nearly falling apart. as you hoover the meat into your mouth.
Location: No. 2, Lane 118, He Ping An He Road – near the Technology building, Taipei, Taiwan
Tao Yuan Street Beef Noodle shop Lau Wang – we got there bright and early to avoid the queues. the exterior of the shop is fairly shabby which suggests it has been here for a long time. over 50 years). It doesn’t have any fancy signage, much less signage at all to signal that it’s a beef noodle shop. Once you step closer you can see the front of the house kitchen dishing up bowls to serve (with a giant no photos allowed sign) and inside is packed despite it being past the prime lunch hour (which I hear there is often a line).
When the staff takes our order, we have the choice of ordering the braised beef noodle soup or the clear broth beef noodle soup- I opt for the classic braised beef broth (NT$180). The pickled vegetables, self serve chopsticks and condiments are already on the table, although the owner might grab the vegetables once you’re done to share with another table.
The braised beef noodle soup is impressive looking when it arrived, with several thick slices of beef placed atop the huge bowl of noodles and soup (it was enough to feed Plus 1 and I, well we wanted to try lots of things so did not want to full ourselves up on the one item).
Location: No.15 Taoyuan Street, Zhongzheng District, Taipei, Taiwan
Breeze Centre – located upstairs of the Breeze Centre next to the Taipei Main station likes a small collection of award winning beef noodle stalls which has five highly regarded beef noodle stalls standing side by side. It was not until our last night in Taipei that I found some beef noodle soup close to where we are staying at Taipei main station.
Each store offers a small selection of noodles for you to choose from, ranging from hand cut noodles, thin or thick noodles.
Beef Noodle Store 1 – I am not 100% sure what the name of this store is as I cannot read Chinese. They speclialise in hand cut noodles and since hand cut noodles are non existent back home I opted to give this shop a try. Sharing a bowl with my mum who I know loves beef tendons I opted for a combination soup noodles of beef tendon and beef.
The soup noodles are cooked to order. You are given a ticket when they alert you when its ready and you grab it from the counter . As I waited for my bowl of noodles to be made, through a small window you can see the chef slicing noodles of a block of dough with a blade into a pot of boiling water.
The broth is hot with a deep beef flavour. The beef noodle soup contained a good selection of beef tendon and couple bits of beef.
Royal Heritage was the other noodle shop that I went to for supper, which seems to have won more awards than any other stalls here. I opted for this place based on the number of awards they won.
Thick noodles beef noodle soup – I think this has to be more delicious than the one I had earlier. This is perhaps reflected on the number of awards that they have won. the beef was tender that fell apart in your mouth. The broth is rich and slightly thicker than the earlier one. Well seasoned and a good selection of vegetables.
Location: Breeze at Taipei Main Station, 3, BeiPing W Rd, 2F, Taipei, Taiwan
Every time I visit Taipei, I always get at least one bowl of beef noodle soup. I try to eat at different places which allows me to get a feel of how varied this dish can be. Some have more depth of flavour. The ones I have mentioned above are worth a visit and I certainly will be back for more in the future.