Sunday, November 9, 2008

Noodle House @ Monterey Park, CA

In all honesty, I'm not quite sure if I was missing something from this place. Some people seemed to love it when it first opened, but I'm always curious if it was just too over-hyped or I lost my taste buds. I decided to let this sit for a few month before I sit down to write this review. After a few more visit, I was hoping that maybe initially I was too harsh and too critical of this place. Maybe...maybe not?

*sigh* It wasn't meant to be. All fairness to the place, it should have been called Steam Buns House or the ever generic Dumpling House. This restaurant is not really known for their noodles as it is very unimaginative and very lackluster. If you ever want to hit up a noodle place, just walk around the corner to Kam Hong Garden .

In the very beginning, I think the big selling attraction was that they have an open window where you can see how they made their steam buns and green onion cake in the full view from the front. In a nice way, sort of reminds of you of how dumplings were rolled up in an opening window at Din Tai Fung. Yes, you do get to watch them make those dumplings.

What the big idea was they have many options for their baoz (steamed buns). My favorite ones are the pork with spring onions . I think if they match the noodles variety with the buns, this place would be fabulous.


Steamed Pork Buns

My favorite variety of dumpling is the pork and pumpkin boiled dumplings . It is so close to Halloween these days. I might as well jump start on the pumpkin phenomenon.


Inside of shrimp & pumpkin dumplings

Here comes the let down to this place. Their buns, noodles, and dumplings are too thick. It's just too much dough on this thing. Too much carbs with no flavors at all. It was like they are saving their spices and ingredients for another day. It wasn't just one time, it's all the time. That's maybe why I am little bummed out on this place.


Boiled Pork Dumplings

I was to give it a little higher grade, but I started thinking of all the places I have visited from DTF, J&J, Mei Long Village, Dragon Marks, Mama's Lu, etc etc. It was getting obvious that this place is going to be one of my least favorites for dumplings. It's not that high either for noodles or buns.

The only saving grace was their onion cake. Now that wasn't thick. It was actually delicious and wasn't overcooked or deep fried like other places.



Fried Green Onion Cake

This place is full of carbs and not in a good way. Less dough and more concentrations on liven up the taste. It was one thing to have the dough to be bland, but not the fillings in the buns or dumplings. I'll give it one more shot down the road, but the recent experiences are not very good at all.

Noodle House
958 E. Garvey Ave
Monterey Park, CA 91755
(626) 280-0831

Grade:

Noodle House on Urbanspoon

4 comments:

tonyc said...

we must be the only two in the blogosphere who don't like Noodle House.

Kam Hong all the way. And Kingburg even more so.

Pepsi Monster said...

Hey Tony,

I hope we are not the only two. It's just way overrated. I rather have people going to Kingburg for buns and Kam Hong for noodles.

There's no way this place was anything near as good as some of them made it out to be.

Exile Kiss said...

Hi Pepsi Monster,

Just saw your review today (a little late to the party :).

My condolences that you didn't enjoy the food here. If I may ask:

* Were you able to eat the Steamed Buns (Baozi) and Dumplings at the restaurant? (your pictures look like they were put "To-Go" / Takeout.)

The reason I ask is that Dumplings and Steamed Buns have a very short lifespan for its deliciousness (not just for this restaurant but for any). I think I ordered Dumplings and Baozi To-Go once or twice in my life (at other restaurants) and realized it wasn't meant to be. It gets thick, doughy too fast.

So if you haven't tried their steamed buns / water dumplings at the restaurant, I'd encourage you to give it another shot; it's a world of difference.

Or, if you have eaten the food at the restaurant, then, ultimately it's about how everyone's taste buds are varied; that's what makes food so fun. :)

Pepsi Monster said...

Hi ExileKiss,

I ordered one dining in and took a to go order. (I was with other friends at the time). It's the dining that upset me. In a weird twist, I actually was more pleased with the to-go orders.

Don't worry ExileKiss, I will go back there soon and give it another shot as I had promised. I don't think it's the end. To be honest, I think it was the first two times I was there that didn't sit well with me. The only time that was good was the two orders I took home after my second visit.

Thanks for the tip too!