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Wang’s Beef Noodle House
8390 Granville Street
I’m not sure when the name changed happened on the external English signage, as I swear not long ago this place was just called ‘Taiwan Beef Noodle House’. I understand that in the Chinese characters though, it does say Wang, so figure the owner just wanted to put his name up-front-and-center on the place now. I don’t spend a lot of time in south Granville so perhaps a reader might have some insights on when this change occurred…
Looking for a quick meal before an appointment, I decided to stop by after seeing a few empty parking spots in front – an apparent challenge given the limited parking space of their lot. The only other time I had eaten there, introduced by a friend who recommended it and joined me, I had a good meal so walked in confident but without a great deal of anticipation. With only thirty minutes to eat and looking for a value proposition, it fit the bill for my needs on this occasion.
It seemed the menu had grown; two separate double-sided laminated sheets were handed to me, with one dedicated to a lot of fruit-based drinks. Not sure if they are trying to become more of a dining cafe of sorts, but was glad to see their base food section with noodles was intact. Sticking to the tried and true, I chose the Beef Noodles in Soup listed at the top of this section of the menu, and went with thick noodles – you have the choice from several, including thin, rice, vermicelli, etc. Listed right below is a spicy version of this, and I know it’s a popular choice as well. Last time, I had mistakenly ordered the large size, which was quite filling, so opted for the small size ($6.25) as I wanted to also grab a plate of the Sliced Beef Roll Pancake creation ($5.25) that blew me away on my first visit.
First out of the back kitchen came my beef roll. A simple concoction but oh so tasty – with a nice crispy green onion cake-like exterior filled with green onions and slices of beef dressed in some sweet hoisin sauce, all rolled like a carpet creating a few layers of goodness. It was cut into sections and each one was pierced with toothpick for easier handling, but I was amused that as on my first visit, they still had not cut through all the way to the bottom, making the task of eating a section at a time not as smooth as it could be. Why cut it if you aren’t going all the way through!
The bowl of noodles came out soon enough and as I scooped out the bottom with the spoon, I easily counted six good sized chunks of tender beef brisket much to my delight. The soup was a deep rich color, flavorful, with obvious tints of cilantro and what seemed to be a picked cabbage of some sort, finely chopped. I was surprised to find the flat wheat noodles in the bowl were able to pick up some of the smaller pieces as I looped them up into my mouth, as I usually associate that kind of attribute with more crinkly, curvy noodles.
All of this coming with GST at just over $12, I am counting this as one of the cheapest value meals I’ve had in Vancouver. One day, I have to make a trip to Taiwan, to eat this on the streets of Taipei to know how authentic it is at Wang’s.