Posted on 04 / 29 / 2009
This is a no-nonsense neighborhood noodle shop. As long as that's what you're expecting, you won't be disappointed. When you sit down, they will hand you a menu and expect you to order pretty much immediately. Even if you ask them to wait a minute, they will leave for about 20 seconds and come straight back. TIC.
Most people come here for a quick meal of either a bowl of wontons or noodles. The wontons are very good - heavy on the cilantro/coriander. The noodles are also pretty tasty, but tricky if you're trying to share.
There are many other dishes to choose from, but there are no pictures, the staff only speaks Chinese, and only about 25% of the menu items are written in English. They will try to get you to order those. They will point and point, but ignore them! There are better dishes - you just have to be adventurous. Point at one of the Chinese only items. Try one that is about 28-38 yuan. You will most likely get a delicious concoction of mushrooms, vegetables, and mock meat that has been cooked until bubbling in a clay pot. Or maybe a delicious stir fry. Much better than stir fried potato and pepper strips, right?
To be fair, one English translated main dish is worth trying - the veggie black pepper steak. It's stir fried with carrots and is very nice. Don't bother with the mapo (spicy tofu) as you can get a much better version at Vegetarian Lifestyle. They might try to warn you that something is spicy by telling you it's "la". This warning seems to be inconsistent with the actual spiciness of the dish, so unless you really hate spice, disregard this warning as it could mean anything from a drizzle of chili oil to 5-6 fresh chopped chilies covering your food. Plain rice isn't listed on the menu, so if you'd like that, ask for "mi fahn".
Service here is simple. The staff can be pretty friendly, but probably not on your fist visit. No individual plates like in other restaurants and as always here, food comes as it's ready and not in any particular order. They have beer, water, and soft drinks available. When you go to the register to pay, consider taking some of the packaged steamed buns for a snack later. They are stuffed with spinach and are quite handy to keep around when out and about. If you want something sweet, walk down Wukang Lu one block and turn right. On the right side of the street is the sister shop selling products such as cookies. Dinner for two can go from 40 yuan for wontons and rice to about 100 for several dishes.
good value, fast service, close to my apartment!
no picture menu, small space, so can be crowded at times, closes early