Continuing on my run of restaurant revisits, today it’s Spicy Noodle House in Osborne Village. This is a place that I have visited several times over the years, but it has been quite a while since my last visit.
In case your wondering, I will be posting several reviews over the next few weeks, that focus on restaurants I haven’t visited before. I’ve just been on a bit of a roll with these revisits.
The interior of the restaurant is pretty much the same as it has always been. I arrived in the late afternoon, so there were only a couple of tables occupied when I went in. They do seem to be doing a fairly reasonable takeout business along with their dine-in.
My most recent visit came on a day when I had done a whole pile of walking. this allowed me to try a couple of dishes along with a couple of appetizers, although, in the reverse order.
The spring rolls are quite substantial. Two from Spicy Noodle House are as large as four or from most other restaurants that serve them. They were good and hot. One of my complaints in my first review is that the food came to the table in somewhat lukewarm form. These spring rolls certainly change that.
The buns are less doughy than I remember the first ones. They have more of a doughnut quality to them. They still make a good vehicle for sopping up leftover juices.
I enjoyed the Spicy House Beef dish. The Beef coating was reasonably crispy with a good hit of spice in the sauce. The broccoli was good, fresh, and firm. I also appreciated how the bright green, contrasted nicely with the reddish-brown of the beef.
My final dish on this visit was the Shanghai spicy noodles. Not the spiciest version I have ever had, but still a good bit of kick. The noodles are good and chewy and the vegetables in this dish are also good and crisp.
Service here is still efficient and friendly. My items arrived with a little bit of time between them. That way I go a good chance to focus on one dish before the next one arrived.
Original Spicy Noodle House review.
I don’t find myself in Osborne Village all that frequently. Certainly not as much as I did in my immediate post university days, when I lived nearby. Even then I didn’t eat there very often. However, I still get there a couple of times a year. If I’m looking for a bite to eat, especially if I’m a little rushed for time, one of my favourite stops is the Spicy Noodle House.
Spicy Noodle House is located on Osborne between River and Stradbrook. It’s easy to miss because you have to descend to the basement are of the building it’s located in. However, much like Little Sister Coffee Maker, it’s a basement you don’t want to bypass.
One of the things I’ve always liked about the Spicy Noodle House, is that they take the word spicy seriously. They advertise themselves as authentic Northern Cuisine. I’m not overly familiar with Chinese food, but I do believe the Northern Region is the one most known for spice.
Their Kung Po Chicken is one of my favourites and certainly comes nice and spicy. I must admit I’ve never asked for extra heat, but I’ve never felt the need to either. I’ve also enjoyed any of the soups I’ve tried.
While it appears from reading around the internet that the Spicy Peanut Noodle Soup is one of the Spicy Noodle House’s signature dishes, yesterday was the first time I had tried it. I can say it’s easy to see why it is a favourite. The broth is fairly thick with a rich peanut taste, there is plenty of spice, and the noodles have a good chew to them.
For something different I tried the steamed buns. By and large I would say that this isn’t an item I would try again. I found them to be quite doughy and without much flavour. Although, I liked them better when I broke them up and dipped them in the soup.
Much and all as I like spice, I decided to go away from that with my entree. Instead I went for the Sweet and Sour Chicken. I quite like this dish. The main reason being that I got a good taste of both the sweet and the sour. I often find sweet and sour dishes tend to veer to the sweet at the expense of the sour. Not so here.There was also a good balance between the chicken and the vegetables. My one quibble with the dish is that it wasn’t very hot temperature wise, and was rather cool by the time I finished.
Spicy Noodle House Summary:
Spicy Noodle House is a place I like to duck into when I’m in a hurry for a quick, satisfying and economical meal. I generally find the service to be efficient, although I did have to ask twice to get chopsticks. Also, even when it is busy I’ve found the service to be quite quick as well. Perhaps not a top end Chinese restaurant, but still good value for money.