Tasty Noodle House
15333 Culver Dr. Ste 320
Irvine, CA 92604
As I mentioned in a couple of previous posts, Irvine is a bastion of Taiwanese cuisine. Much of this is due to the waves of Taiwanese immigration in the 1980s and 1990s, when a number of families chose to move to the affluent suburb of Irvine as opposed to Monterey Park or Alhambra, bringing on a substantial demand for Taiwanese food.
The plethora of Taiwanese food options was one of my favorite things about attending the UC Irvine. Within a 10 minute drive I could be dining at more than half a dozen restaurants serving delicious bowls of beef noodle soup and scallion pancakes. These cheap, delicious, and filling meals fueled many nights of studying and essay writing.
So when I was back in Irvine again during the holiday break my first instinct was to go straight to a Taiwanese restaurant for lunch. This time, however, I wanted to try Tasty Noodle House because it was one of the few newer Taiwanese/Shanghainese restaurants that had opened after I graduated from college.
My sister and I were immediately seated and we got to ordering from their wide selection. We ordered:
- Beef Noodle Soup (紅燒牛肉湯麵) – Their beef noodle soup is pretty good with tender beef brisket, thin wheat noodles that are chewy, and a coup that is spiced with just the right amount. Like most places I wish there was more beef, but that is a tiny quibble.
- Scallion Pancakes (蔥油餅) – I loved these scallion pancakes. They were perfectly pan fried with a few flaky dough layers and just enough scallions. They also weren’t too oily, which was a definite bonus. If I wasn’t full I would have ordered a second round.
- Shanghai Xiao Long Bao (上海小籠包) – While the skins of these were thin and held their own, unfortunately the buns had very little soup in them. While the flavors overall were alright, the dry filling was very disappointing given the many other places in the area that make better xiao long bao.
All in all, I would definitely return to Tasty Noodle House, even if I wouldn’t order the xiao long bao. The beauty is that with the trend of LA and Orange County chains finally opening locations in San Diego, I can now taste this deliciousness at Tasty Noodle House’s new store in Kearny Mesa. I can’t wait for another taste of good Taiwanese food on my next trip back to SoCal.