Winter may have come early this year, but one reason to celebrate this is the earlier-than-expected enjoyment of noodle soups. Soul-sustaining ramen and hand pulled noodle soups, so neglected in the summer, are what gets us through the dark and dreary months.
In case you have any doubt about the specialty of the new Kuaile Hand Pulled Noodle Restaurant on Forsyth Street in Chinatown, the answer comes as soon as you walk in the door: Everywhere there’s the sound of slurping. The place is bare bones, with a few formica tables and not much in the way of decor, but there are already a good number of customers bent over Kuaile’s hand pulled noodle soup.
Ever get a yen for a cold, spicy salad made with…lamb face? Chances are you haven’t, but once you’ve had this and some of the other unusual offerings at the new Xi’an Famous Foods on St. Mark’s place, you may start to crave it.
A welcome addition to a street that’s already rife with Asian food places, Xi’an Famous Foods ups the ante by upping the spice content, a lot. One bite of cold buckwheat noodles ($5, item A3), above, and you may start to cry – for a good reason. The amount of fresh horseradish is intense, counterbalanced by cilantro, bean sprouts and sesame oil. As with the fat, hand-pulled noodles that go into many of the dishes here, the buckwheat noodles are made fresh every day. (more…)