Hong Kong in general is missing out on quality Taiwanese Beef Noodles which will be on par with expected Taiwanese standards. This situation has been amplified by the sudden influx of quality Japanese Ramen shops popping up around town, propping up Japanese banners to claim their supremacy in various local suburbs, plus our Hainanese Chicken Rice shops are honestly not too far off Singaporean levels anyway. Diamond Hill Shopping Mall, at Diamond Hill MTR Station in Hong Kong is holding a Taiwanese Beef Noodles event for 2 consecutive days and tomorrow on Sunday is the last chance to try out some of the noodles from a hand selected few award winning Taiwanese noodle shops. There is one catch however as due to the inclined nature of the pop-up circumstance, some shops cannot replicate the 100% original in-shop versions by constraint, whereas some stalls resort to makeshift noodles as temporary substitutes. A few shops as observed do not provide their signature Beef Intestines or chose to forego using the harder-to-cook-right Beef cuts in order to maintain overall quality and to eliminate the risk of jeopardizing reputation. The soup base never still gives a rough indication as to what one could extrapolate from and adjust expectations when finally eating them at the original Taiwanese stalls… This charitable event was always meant to be merely a preview.
8 Taiwanese Noodle Shops are presented here, running from 25 to 26th of Feb.
The queue for each round of noodles is approx. 15 to 30 minutes.
You donate $20 to a box and in return receive 1 redemption voucher at a time,
which entitles you to a chosen one bowl of noodle.
#No. 1 This Shop’s Clear Broth style noodles won our heart -
Thanks to @Dor19 from DorothyMa.com’s Review , we were tipped off to trying this bowl. The broth was filled with beef meat and bone flavours, with a subtle hint of Chinese Medicine and judicial amounts of spice and no traces of MSG. The beef sheen weren’t fork tender though tasty, the beef ribs were perfectly boiled. The noodles remained elastic and chewy. This will be a shop I’ll visit when I go to Taiwan again.
#No. 2 This shop is the only Shop here which makes their own Noodles on the spot -
The noodles were thinner than others and more like Shanghainese la mian noodles in taste. The soup base was decent only but too heavy in alcohol, unveiling not much surprise layers despite using more vegetables and goji. I personally didn’t like this the most. That’s despite them being the 2011 Overall Winner for Clear Broth Beef noodles back in Taipei.
#No. 3 The Beef Sheens here were thickly cut and had the best overall texture -
The soup is beefy and slightly spicy, but quite salty. This is more of a generic style Red version Beef Noodles. This is likable, but I personally prefer the broth to be more structured and less in your face bold and heavily spiced.
#No. 4 This Shop’s Red version Beef Noodle is BOLD ! -
Some foodies liked this, but I think we arrived a bit too late (?) and the soup had evolved to become way too salty. For a salt whore like myself I hardly ever find things overly salty yet this also had too much apparent MSG. It’s quite heavily spiced but despite the darker colour wasn’t too beefy at all. The beef pieces were however braised very well. Probably would need a cold beer to drink with this to balance it out, but it’s decent.
#No. 5 The Most Surprising Package -
This came with flame-grilled beef ribs which imparted more aroma into the noodles bowl. The egg as usual was cooked all the way through instead of being onsen-like in Japanese Ramens. The soup base was a appreciated 2nd surprise as it was quite sophisticated, with a more veggies and herbal medicinal taste but still containing enough beefiness to resonate through in the background. This modernised soup base is exploring off the beaten track a bit, but it worked and provided the most long lasting sensation and we also liked how this had no traceable MSG.
In Summary -
Our tasters arrived at our own ‘preferred choices’, which deviated slightly from others during separate visits, and there is no right or wrong!! But for some of us bloggers such as http://dorothyma.com and http://kentxfood.blogspot.com/ , we probably liked No. 1 and No. 5 the best consensually even though we didn’t eat together, followed closely by No. 3 above. No.4 had really good beef pieces too to be fair. *There are still 3 shops we haven’t explored. Let me know how you think!
Level 1, Plaza Hollywood, Diamond Hill
12pm to 8pm (usually sold out around 6pm)