nice looking catfood noodle pics here.
Okay, so I went back again, and I am happy to report that my mushy youpo noodle must have been a bad one-off because I tried one of their new items using the same noodle and they were PERFECT!
I also found out the former chef did NOT end up in Rowland Heights, but just slightly northwest in San Gabriel. He’s now at this restaurant:
Apparently it is near: 708 E Las Tunas Dr Ste A San Gabriel CA 91776
Who can help translate? Or do more investigation??
As to my actual food order, I tried 2 new items: the Fire Noodle and the ChungKing Handmade Noodle. The Fire Noodle is available in 2 sizes, so I chose the smaller size as the ChungKing Handmade Noodle was quite large. Both were delicious! Loved the peanuts in the Fire Noodle, and I really liked the meat and tea egg in the ChungKing Handmade Noodle, which makes it like the Youpo Noodle on steroids. The last photo is a size comparison photo for the two different bowl sizes:
Thanks @strongoxman! Great sleuthing and good info. I hope the rest of the new menu is on point.
The big thing is if Best Noodle House still has the great complex spices for their standouts (Water Mouth Chicken, Spicy Wontons, Dan Dan Noodles). Good to know about the new Youpo Noodles though.
I would need to try the Mouth Water Chicken again, but tentatively I’d say yes. The Youpo/ChungKing Handmade still has that dab of garlic paste and the chili blend still seems on-point. The Fire Noodle had a blend of spices that, while not identical to anything else on the menu, is certainly in keeping with what I’d expect from here.
Really, the dishes we’ve lost are those on the back side of the former menu; everything else is the same and slightly expanded.
The photo text says 重庆特色小面. Translated roughly: “Chongqing-featured small eats/noodle house”.
The address is the old Shi Hai, yes?
Chongqing is written 重庆 in simplified Chinese and 重慶 in traditional Chinese.
I hardly ever make it up to Las Tunas, so I’m not sure. The waiter made a point of giving me the address, but saying the restaurant is “nearby” so it may or may not be the same. My guess is it is in the same strip mall.
Either way, I want my spicy fried chicken again; I wasn’t ready to say goodbye!
I just emailed a friend who lives out there. Confirmed that it’s next door to Four Seas.
That makes sense since Lu Gi which was in that shopping center for years recently closed down.
The new restaurant is called Chong Qing Special Noodles
Thanks guys! Guess where I’ll be going for dinner…
Before I ordered, I asked the waitress (in Chinese) if they’re related to best noodle house. Surprisingly, she was very defensive “no, not related! We’re a new store!”
Then the chef walked in n out. So I asked her if he used to work there. “no, never, this is a new store” (this all in Chinese)
She gave me a free appetizer. I ordered the half order big pan chicken, not too spicy, n no need to get a giant portion like most other places that serve it nearby. Taste was similar to nearby places, but without the insane spice (I didn’t specify spice level)
So I guess she conveyed that (I had asked) to the chef. Once I finished eating, he came to talk to me, n then he told me that he was the head chef at best noodle house and saw that business was very good… So he had decided to try on his own. He seems surprised that Chen (or cheng?) laoban (owner of best noodle house) was telling people about his shop… Maybe that’s why the waitress was trying to deny deny deny…? Even tho they wrote the name in Chinese, seen above?
Anyhoo, the menu is similar (pic above) , n has a few extras on the back (forgot the pic sry) As long as the quality is the same or better, he should have no issues. This location is near my house, so I’ll be able to eat this day or night!
Thx for the tip strongoxman!
Yeah…so the owner of Best Noodle House is most definitely NOT telling people about this place. As I posted above:
I really hope by sharing the chow scoop here I didn’t get that nice waiter in trouble or fired…
Anyway, I also ate here this evening, and while the Gele Mountain Style Fried Chicken was as glorious as ever, the other dishes I tried were a bit underwhelming. I’ll still go back and try some more, but I found the flavors much more muted and dare I say bland (except, of course, for the chicken–thank god). I had a sliced beef “Sichuan Style” cold plate, and it was utterly unremarkable. I also tried their “Stir-Cumin Lamb Pull Noodle” that had excellent noodles, but the lamb cuts weren’t up to par, and the saucing was bland and too sweet.
Service was also quite slow. The restaurant only had 2 other occupied tables when I was there, yet the last of my 3 dishes came out 45 minutes after ordering. You could hear the chef in the kitchen making each dish one at a time, but somehow everything has always been way faster at Best Noodle House (as it still remains). Hopefully these are new restaurant teething issues. I’ll come back for the Gele Mountain Style Fried Chicken, but Best Noodle House doesn’t have anything to worry about IMO.
Unremarkable Sliced Beef Sichuan Style:
Underwhelming Stir-Cumin Lamb Pull Noodle:
The Saving Grace:
Chong Qing Special Noodles - Official Review Thread
My god I completely misread that line. I hope nothing happened, but he seemed to want to keep it on the downlow regardless. I will clarify with him if I drop by later. Sorry for the mix up.
OK I called them to correct my mistake n they said neither side would have said anything anyway.
So confused now.
Both are good?
One is good?
I know I have to do some leg work myself…just trying to clarify what is being reported here.
My impression is that each have diff strengths? Not sure if the same dishes were ordered at both places. But I agree that some clarification may help. Although I’m also appreciative of the posters who have done such great sleuthing!
At this point, yes. I need to try more of the menu at Chong Qing Special Noodle, as I never got a chance to many of those dishes while they were housed at Best Noodle House. Ironically, the day I went to try several of the “House Special” menu items was the day I showed up to find only half a menu! Unfortunately, that means I cannot do much of a comparison between the two, and of the noodle dishes there only seems to be limited overlap, i.e. #s 7-10.
Taste has changed.
At best noodle house
I ordered the kou shui ji aka mouth water chicken aka cold steamed chicken with hot sauce… And… This is what they gave me:
The chicken itself was the same, but the sauce was thicker, bland, and flavorless.
These are from the 2 most recent trips prior to the menu change:
I also got the (unremarkable) spicy numb jelly, which had the same bland sauce as the chicken, and the chungking hand pulled noodles. The latter is just the chungking noodles with hand pulled noodles instead of the thinner noodles. The noodle dish was pretty good.
I hope it was an off day, as the chicken sauce was something completely different than my 7+ previous orders of the same dish.