Fri, Jul 25, 2003 - Page 19 News List

Restaurant: Chinese Noodles (神麵)

By Yu Sen-lun  /  STAFF REPORTER

A big bowl of spicy noodles goes well with meat sauce and side dishes


A small noodle shop situated by the park behind the Sherwood Hotel may sound a little ordinary for a diner, but not if you know who is behind it.

Andrew Lin (林宏家) has been a chef at some top Taipei restaurants -- Mojo, the MOD bar, Ruth's Chris Steakhouse and the Sherwood Hotel -- but gave it all up to bring you noodles, but of a special kind.

Try smoked duck dry noodles (貴妃燻鴨乾拌麵, NT$70) first. Smoked duck breast from Ilan County is cut in shreds. It is topped with a home-made sesame paste-based sauce which actually contains 12 kinds of seasonings. With the smoked duck soup noodles (香蒜濟州燻鴨麵, NT$90), the soup base is chicken stock with garlic flavor. On top there are five large slices of smoked duck breast and overall the dish is like a duck-flavored variation of Japanese ramen.

Lin's 18 years of experience in Western restaurants inspired him to blend Italian and Japanese cuisine into his "nouveau Chinese noodles."

"I like noodles. I think noodles are a kind of food that can be developed a lot more," he said.

"As long as you have the right angle, the unique flavor and the right price," said older brother Alex Lin (林宏宇), who takes charge of marketing and management of the house.

The noodles are made to the Lin brothers' own recipe. "We added pasta ingredients to make it more chewy. But we try to keep the thick texture of Chinese hand-pulled noodles," Alex Lin said.

The restaurant's Chinese name is shen mien (神麵), which means "godly noodles." Shen mien is also the name for the house's brand-name dish. It is Sichuan spicy noodles with meat sauce, with a tiny bit of chicken stock to make the red sauce less greasy.

An East-meets-West dish is Club Beef Noodles (極品總匯牛肉麵, NT$90). The soup base is a Western tomato soup, while the beef slice and beef stomach is stewed in a traditional Chinese sauce.

Address: 15, Alley 25, Lane 113, Minsheng E Rd, Taipei (台北市民生東路三段113巷25弄15號)

Telephone: (02) 2718 5851

Open: 11am to 2pm, 5pm to 10pm

Average meal: NT$150

Details: No English menu (coming soon), credit cards not accepted

To accompany the noodles, try the NT$30 side dishes. For frequent noodle eaters, I recommend you join as a member, which requires you to purchase 10 coupons for the NT$30 side dishes. This way you enjoy a price of NT$59 for any noodle dish.

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