The Eastern Restaurant – Go Zha Jiang Mian!

By , August 18, 2008


176 Orchard Road  #01-57 Centrepoint Tel: 67362638

Since Beijing is all talk of the town now due to the Olympics, let’s have a look at some familiar Northern Cuisines.

Zha Jiang Mian 炸酱面, otherwise known as meat sauce noodles or ‘Chinese spaghetti’ is a popular noodle dish, though there are many variations. The usual version comes with minced pork stirred fried with fermented beans.

Do you know the style in Beijing can be very different?

Eating Zha Jian Mian at an authentic restaurant there can be as interesting as watching a performance. The waiter would come with a huge tray containing bowls of ingredients ranging from diced garlic, tofu, shallots and yellow soybean paste. After selecting the ingredients (pick ALL if you are indecisive), the serving staff will throw each ingredient into a large bowl of noodles at an amazing speed, along with clanging sounds of the bowls. An eye-popping experience.

Though we have none of this clanging here, you can try a very good bowl of Noodle with Minced Meat & Mushroom in Spicy Sauce ($7.80) at the Eastern Restaurant.

The Food
Although it is termed Shanghainese, the selection is the typical noodle, rice and dumplings. The Zha Jiang Mian is one of the best I had, with an abundance of brown sauce over hand-pulled noodles, along with crunchy cool cucumber on the side. While most other versions can have very dry pork or tough noodles, this one comes warm and moist.

The Xiao Long Bao ($4.00 for 4 pieces) doesn’t disappoint as well. As their signature dish, it promises to be succulent with hot juice spurting out once you have a full bite into the dumplings.

Some of the other dishes are a let down though. The appetizer peanuts were cold, hard and tasted past its best. The Yang Zhou Fried Rice ($9.50) was also dry and lacked the fragrance and almost felt like I was eating stale rice.

The Service
The aunties were very friendly and made us feel at home, and even offered to change our order of fried rice after we ‘complained’. Too late for us though.

This restaurant has potential, but is unfortunately chucked at a cold and sorry state of a corner behind an escalator at Centrepoint.

The Verdict
Some hits and misses, with one excellent Zha Jiang Noodles. 3.0*

3 Responses to “The Eastern Restaurant – Go Zha Jiang Mian!”

  1. SunnyDrop says:

    Hi are you a profesional photographer? The photos you take always make the food look so good. I think I will go and try the Zha Jiang Noodles based on your verdict. The meat sauce looks really generous serving!

  2. danielang says:

    Hi SunnyDrop, I wish I was one! Think I am better at video graphy though.

    Once I have money to invest in a good camera and a course, I hope to take better pictures.

  3. elchinas says:

    hi…

    Great job. But not enought info. Where can i read more?…

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