1. Yark Rong Dung Dung by Palmy
I’m back from my family vacation in Dominican Republic & New York! Here is review of A.Wang Noodle Bar I wrote!
disclaimer: My Singaporean restaurateur friend and I own A.Wang noodle bar. I wrote this review as part of my ‘writing sample’ for TimeOut Beijing magazine’s part-time position I applied. Although it may be little biased, I tried to write as honest as possible.
Where else in the world can you have a Singaporean Laksa next to miniature Eiffel tower? Only in Beijing.
One of my favorite places to spend Sunday afternoon in Beijing is Parkview Green mall (芳草地). For those readers who are always hunting for a new eatery in this mall, there is a new Southeast Asian noodle specialty kiosk A.Wang Noodle Bar that just opened inside the food court. Right next to Crepanini’s iconic Eiffel tower inside the mall, now you can enjoy all your favorite Southeast Asian noodles (Pho, PadThai, Meegoreng, Laksa) at Beijing’s trendiest art gallery mall without breaking your wallet.
Make no mistake, just because it’s located within a food court of a mall, this ain’t your typical food court quality food. A.Wang Noodle bar is a culinary collaboration between an experienced Singaporean chef-restaurateur Sean (of Vavavoom and VietExpress) and a knowledgeable Beijing-based food blogger/researcher Musichef TJ.
A cozy and warm 25sqm kiosk space accented with red acrylic panel and a logo that resembles a Chinese take-out box, with staffs dressed in autumn-colored plaid shirt uniform paired with a cool red-starred black hat, the space is very modern and inviting. The glass display in the back is lined with 15 large glass jars filled with an array of colorful Southeast Asian spices, aromatics and three types of noodles that are actually used to cook the noodles.
Soup, stir-fried, dry noodle dishes that hail from five Southeast Asian countries; Vietnam, Thailand, Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, there’s something for every noodle lover at A.Wang Noodle bar.
Their signature Beef Pho (38-58rmb) with a choice of either sliced beef or premium tenderloin with an option to add 10 kuai for beef combo (meatball, brisket, tripe), might taste a little bland for those who are used to MSG-laden pho but the natural, pure taste of beef bone broth which according to the owner takes 10 hours to cook comes through in this pho with a hint of black cardamom, star anise, charred ginger and cinnamon. Extra ‘like’ point for A.Wang for their homemade Vietnamese chili sauce and sweet soya bean sauce （黄豆酱）instead of typical Siracha and hoisin sauces that accompany pho.
In short, this is one good PHO!
Grilled pork pho
Pad Thai, Tomyum noodle soup, and Indonesian Meegoreng are also very popular and more authentic than most places in the city but the real show stealers here are the Singaporean
For those who are adventurous eaters or simply like curry flavor, look no further, Singaporean Laksa (38rmb) here is the real deal! The rich broth is cooked with tumeric, ginger, galangal, coconut cream, then topped with elusive fresh laksa leaves, hard boiled egg, fish cakes, chicken strips, shrimps, bean curd puff, a spoonful of housemade sambal chili paste and a drizzle of chili oil. One bite of this Laksa will start firework explosion of flavors in your mouth!
Tip#1 – when the service is not busy, you can request for slightly thicker yellow noodle instead of vermicelli for total Singaporean immersion. According to my Singaporean friend who tried, ‘this is as authentic as Laksa gets in Beijing.’ If you like your Laksa spicy and sour, you can also request for a wedge of lime and Vietnamese chili sauce to put in.
Tip#2 For fried items- don’t go for the signature Lobster balls (15rmb), instead go for the handmade spring rolls(12rmb) or fried crab balls (12rmb), you will be glad that you did.
Tip#3 If you want something special, order their Singaporean black carrot cake to share (thinking of sweet carrot cake? No, it’s actually a Singaporean street food made of shredded daikon radish and steamed rice flour), which is then stir fried with eggs, preserved radish and dark sweet soya sauce. The only difference between the black and white carrot cake is the sauce. Black carrot cake is made with slightly sweet and thick dark soya and the white variation is made with fish sauce topped with shrimps.
Even for a rice lover like me with big appetite, I felt very satisfied and full, and for just 38rmb, I’ll be coming back here to try other noodles and their monthly specials. Great news for rice lovers – A.Wang Noodle Bar will start introducing new dishes starting next month starting with Hainanese Chicken Rice. Will be sold in limited quantity everyday, so come quick before they sell out!
Address in English: Great Food Town B01, LG2 Parkview Green Fangcaodi, 9 Dongdaqiao Lu, Chaoyang District
Address in Chinese: 北京市朝阳区东大桥路9号乔福芳草地大夏LG2层好食城B01柜位
Operation Hours: 10:00 – 21:00 (everyday)
Spring roll here is made with rice paper instead of wonton paper, so it has chewier consistency. Fillings include minced pork, vermicelli, shredded taro and wood ear (木耳).
Tip#4 (from the Viet/Singaporean chef) the lettuce and pickles that come with aren’t just garnish! Just like you would in Korean BBQ, try wrapping lettuce around a spring roll with pickle inside then dip it in fish sauce for maximum pleasure. Once you try this method, you won’t go back! I know, I didn’t.
Lastly, I want to personally thank every and each of my friends who came to support A.Wang noodle bar, thank you and thank you! I felt very loved 🙂
Reviews from BJ based magazines and 大众点评 (Chinese yelp)
Chinese Yelp 大众点评 (reviews from Chinese diners)
I sat around at the food court one day to analyze the type of diners that come through, pics of my notes
I’m on Instagram – @Musichef_TJ
. come check out Musichef TJ’s daily happenings 🙂
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