Seems like there is a recent Eastern noodle craze in London. First there was the ramen joints (Ippudo, Tonkotsu, Kanda-Ya), then udon (Ichi-richi), then Xian (Biang, Biang Biang and Master Wei) and now Taiwanese noodles.
I like noodles as much as the other guy but not as much as some of my friends. One in particular always yells for soup noodles at every occasion. That gets rather tiring after a while. Either that, or as I get older I get more boring and testy.
In any case, when a Taiwanese noodle shop called “Niu” came along, I couldn’t help but be interested. That is a rather short name for a restaurant and reminded me of what a friend told me was the secret to writing engaging prose.
KISS. Keep it simple stupid.
Well that at least is sound advice when writing in an occupational context. The advantage of writing for a hobby is that you can do whatever you like. I can indulge my use of flamboyant, redundant and confusing language to my heart’s content. However, I have been strongly advised that the way to get greater publicity nowadays is to follow the rules as attention spans these days are anemic. As well as an appreciation of sophisticated scarcely utilized language.
So this is Niu, otherwise known as Cow. That is the literal translation from Mandarin. An apt name as there are only two mains on the menu. Beef noodle and beef noodle.
Taiwanese beef noodles, beef shin, mustard greens. Deep, flavourful beef broth, I couldn’t help but slurp this up in isolation. At first I thought there was no need for toppings. As for the noodles, these were meaty and pleasantly full of bite. Yet it was the beef shin that was the best. With large helpings of collagen (to better help with preserving my youthful looks), I was delighted. The mustard greens and spring onions only made things better.
Beef short rib noodles. With the same broth and noodles, these were also not bad, although the beef was sliced more thinly, so going for a different style. I personally prefer the large slabs of beef but others may prefer more delicate pieces. Speaking more about the noodles here, these had shape and bite and were rather good. The other ingredients except the beef cut was the same as the other noodle soup. So I would say it was decent but costing a pretty penny.
Niu had quite a bit going for it. Delicious noodles, meaty broth. Enough beef taste that you could almost see the cow staring back at you from the soup. Yet what lets it down was the rather full price. I’m sure cows are more expensive now but not really that much…
A quieteating 7/10.
Lunch (1 course) was GBP16 excluding drinks and service.
19 Catherine St,
London WC2B 5JS