Henan-Style Hand-Pulled Noodles at Zheng Zhong He Nan La Mian Guan – Shanghai

Of all the incredible delights that we experienced in #Shanghai, these Henan-style hand-pulled noodles bested them all. I live for #noodles, and these were nothing short of stupendous. Featured today on GastronomyBlog.com!

We smelled the broth before we spied the noodles at Zheng Zhong He Nan La Mian Guan (now, that’s a mouthful!). We happened to stroll by the storefront on our way to Yu Garden, sometime mid-morning when the place was still sleepy, and after taking one whiff of the curry-kissed soup simmering in the entryway, we vowed to return for lunch when the restaurant was in full swing.

Henan-Style Hand-Pulled Noodles at Zheng Zhong He Nan La Mian Guan - Shanghai

Zheng Zong He Nan La Mian Guan, which roughly translates to Zhao’s Genuine Henan-Style Hand-Pulled Noodle Place,* has the honor of being the only restaurant in China that we visited twice during our stay. It was that good.

Zheng Zong He Nan La Mian Guan - Shanghai - Hand-Pulled Noodles

On our first visit to the restaurant follwing our explorations of Yu Garden, we dug into the restaurant’s classic noodle soup. Nearly every diner was slurping the same.

What sets the hand-pulled noodles from Henan Province apart from other styles is the distinct yellow-tinged broth, according to our cultural informant.* The soup that seduced us was made of beef bones and redolent of warming spices. Cilantro added a dimension of freshness to the bowl.

Zheng Zong He Nan La Mian Guan - Shanghai - Hand-Pulled Noodles

Quite possibly even better than the broth were the hand-pulled noodles swimming in it. Each and every strand was smooth as silk and had a toothsome bite that didn’t diminish much at all in the steaming hot broth.

Zheng Zong He Nan La Mian Guan - Shanghai - Hand-Pulled Noodles

Another popular lunchtime dish was the pork with green chilies served over steamed rice.

Zheng Zong He Nan La Mian Guan - Shanghai - Hand-Pulled Noodles

Served on the side was ladle-full of broth and a hunk of deep-fried bean curd that was awesomely spongy. This hodgepodge of flavors and textures was simply satisfying.

Zheng Zong He Nan La Mian Guan - Shanghai - Hand-Pulled Noodles

The Astronomer and I returned to the restaurant once more on our final night in the city. This time we ordered the dry hand-pulled noodles, delicately flavored with browned, almost burnt, scallions, and a bit of soy sauce. While The Astronomer loved the noodle soup, this bowl bested it for me.

Of all the incredible delights that we indulged in during our stay in Shanghai, these Henan-style hand-pulled noodles rank at the top of the list. I live for noodles, and these were nothing short of stupendous.

* A special thanks to The Astronomer’s colleague Xiang Zhai, who hails from Henan Province, for stepping up to the cultural informant plate.

Zheng Zhong He Nan La Mian Guan (click on link for Google map)
322 Yunnan South Road
Huangpu, Shanghai, China

One year ago: {swoon} Old Fashioned Ice Box at Lark Cake Shop
Two years ago: Anne Burrell’s Crostini of Chicken Liver Pâté with Balsamic Onions
Three years ago: Myers + Chang – Boston
Four years ago: Minca Ramen Factory – New York City
Five years ago: Bánh Xèo – Ho Chi Minh City
Six years ago: Friday Night Bites
Seven years ago: Farmicia – Philadelphia

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