Is it truly absurd to motor 15 miles for a bowl of noodles? Not when you got the time and the traffic's right. Besides, distance driving is a sport Angelenos frequently play whether we want to or not. But more importantly, as a wise comida sage once told me, when one is faced with the promise of phenomenal noodles it is always prudent to take advantage. K and I faithfully accepted this advice and sped out to Temple City for a Taiwanese style almuerzo at House of Mandarin Noodle.
While ordering a fresh mango juice, the stern (yet meticulous) waitstaff quickly profiled us and determined that K most certainly spoke Hokkien dialect (which she doesn't) and that I, Solo Basura, should ultimately be given the option to eat with a fork. With that established, I set the wheels is motion and ordered it up.
The first item on the block was a glistening bowl of puerco wontons in a spicy sauce with crushed peanuts and chopped celery. These little bambinos cover a lot of bases: fiery flavors and juicy dumplings combine with an emphatic crunch. During my savory foray, I couldn't help but think that this dish would make an excellent desayuno and it would sure as shinola wake you up in no time flat.
Next came the sliced beef pancake (sometimes referred to as a Shandong beef roll due to its Northern Chinese origins) stuffed with carne, green onions and cilantro. I must admit that I have had better versions of this tasty creation, but I also realize it's counterintuitive to complain about anything that's beefy and flaky.
And for the finale, a steaming cauldron of delicioso beef noodle soup: rich broth (not greasy at all) with tender carne, firm noodles, scallions, and cilantro. This stuff will put a smile on your face and damn sure cure what ails ya. If beef isn't your thing HOMN has around twenty noodle soups (along with stewed cold cuts) to choose from, just be sure not to miss out. I am deeply humbled to have recalled my comida teachings in such a meaningful way: it's not the distance, it's the noodle. This was well worth the trip.