Published on May 20th, 2014 | by Sophie Coulthard0
The Noodle House, Covent Garden
Summary: Flavoursome dishes, friendly service and an extensive and unusual drinks list
Located in the heart of Soho, the first UK Noodle House has thrown open its doors to bring sophisticated Southeast Asian cuisine to London. Set to act as a platform to launch a further 27 UK restaurants in the not-so-distant future, the Dubai success story is bringing affordable dining to the masses without compromising on quality.
Already popular in 13 other countries throughout the globe, its newest arrow to the noodle house’s bow doesn’t disappoint. Simple, understated and modern, the spacious interior is sleek and elegant but lets the food do the talking.
Specialising in – unsurprisingly – noodles, the restaurant offers an impressive 12 varieties, including vermicelli, ban mein and udon, and also offers an array of different dishes to suit every taste. Separated into a number of sections, customers can choose from small and large plates, noodle dishes and soup noodles, salads and even a kid’s menu.
When it comes to starters, the small plates menu offers 12 different dishes. The house speciality Si Racha Prawns are a delight; huge, juicy prawns battered in a light tempura, served with signature spicy mayo, adding a real kick to the dish. However, if you’re after something a little spicier look no further than the Wasabi version, tossed in wasabi and topped with fruity mango salsa. The generously portioned Chicken Satay is another small plate not to be missed; chargrilled to perfection with a delicious smokey flavour that is perfectly accompanied by the sweet peanut sauce. Other small plates include delicious pan-fried and handmade duck and chive dumplings, warming Pork Tom Yum and the super healthy and fresh Asian Salad, with prices ranging from an impressive £3.40 to £6.50.
Large plates continue to impress; the quarter Cantonese Roast Duck is delicious and definitely worth ordering as a sharing plate for the table. Menu inspiration has been drawn from various countries around South East Asia; Malaysian Beef Rendang sits alongside Javanese Nasi Goreng – one of the tastiest dishes on the menu. The rice is wok fried with prawns, chilli, spring onions and Sambal Belachan and topped with a fried egg, then served with two chicken satay skewers and prawn crackers. The Thai Green Curry is another success story – creamy, rich and full of flavour – and served either with chicken or cauliflower, courgette, broccoli for vegetarians. A recommended side dish to accompany the curry is Roti Canai; the warm Malaysian flat bread is ideal for mopping up any sauce left over.
The dessert menu is more limited with 4 main options as well as unusual gelatos and sorbets such as Kiwi, Papaya & Mint, Chrysanthemum & Goji Berry Tea or Fresh Mango. If you can’t make your mind up, go for the sweet sharing plate – small portions of lime and ginger cheesecake, mango coconut pudding and banana spring rolls. All are delicious, though the mango coconut pudding is definitely the star of the show.
When it comes to drinks, the noodle house juxtaposes its street-food inspired dishes with tranquil tea-house inspired beverages that work to complement the food and bring out the flavours. Whilst the cocktails are impressive – the Moonshadow boasts Lillet Blanc tea, chrysanthemum and jasmine infused vodka served with an ice hibiscus that adds even more flavour to the drink as it melts – it’s the tea selection that really stands out. Diners can choose from blooming teas such as the poetically named Butterfly Dance Single-Estate Blooming Tea to oolong, black, white, green or even caffeine-free tisanes.
The bottom floor of the noodle house is home to a circular seated Tea Bar as well as a Tea Wall that displays 17 bespoke tea blends, six of which are unique to the restaurant.
The noodle house offers affordable casual dining inspired by range of South East Asian influences. Flavoursome dishes, friendly service and an extensive and unusual drinks list mean that the restaurant is sure to be every bit the success story owner Jumeirah Restaurants hopes for. Expect to see plenty more popping up in major UK cities soon.
The Noodle House, 117 Shaftesbury Ave, WC2H 8ADShare This Post