Food Musings

Philly’s Momofuku

In search of a good meal at affordable price, we trooped down to Cheu Noodle Bar today evening. It has received a lot of good press recently and seems to be the next hot thing. When you enter, you’ll realize its a really small place. It’s currently BYO until they get a liquor licence. The interior is funky with a one wall painted with a colorful mural. 

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Most of the seats are at the bar (hence the name I suppose) although there are a few tables available. I ordered the pork belly bun and the noodles with peanut sauce, ground duck and foie gras and garnished with green seaweed. 

The pork belly bun was small and the perfect size for an appetizer. Pork belly is really tough to screw up since it has so much fat and is tough to overcook. Having said this, it was one of the best pork belly buns I’ve had. Comparisons to New York’s Momofuku Noodle Bar are inevitable and it’s clear that Cheu Noodle Bar’s pork belly buns hold their own. The pork belly literally melted in your mouth, and the bun itself was soft and warm. There seemed to be some cheese inside which surprisingly went well with the pork belly, even with the overdose of grease.

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The noodles took surprisingly long to arrive; I guess they’re still setting up their systems. I was a little disappointed by the quantity, although noodles were excellent. They had been freshly cooked, dipped into boiling water just a few minutes before in front of us. The sauce was very similar to Dan Dan noodles, with the sweetish peanut flavor hitting the right notes. The small pieces of foie gras were like hidden gems and added a rich flavor to the noodles. I never thought foie gras would go with Asian noodles but it was a pleasant surprise. 

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Given it’s small size and excellent noodles, it’s not hard to see Cheu Noodle Bar becoming popular very fast, something like Lolita. 

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