WHETHER you're a fan of Japanese ramen, can't go past a plate of pad Thai, or salivate at the sight of Vietnamese pho, there's no shortage of choices around for those who love nothing more than a big serve of noodles.
87 Young Street, Carrington Handmade noodles are the drawcard at Franky's Lan Zhou Noodles.
Hua "Franky" Fan's hand-pulled noodles are not only delicious, but a little piece of theatre in itself as he prepares the long strands fresh in his Chinese restaurant in Carrington.
It's mesmerising to watch and is a culinary art form that took him four years to perfect, studying under his master.
The restaurant takes its name from the city of Lanzhou in northern China which is famous for its dish of beef noodles and bone broth.
Last week, Franky celebrated his first year of trade at his restaurant (previously home to Antojitos) where you can choose from the traditional Lanzhou noodles with beef, radish and coriander in bone broth, or tofu, mushroom, radish and coriander in vegetable broth (they also offer a gluten-free rice version of the noodles).
The silky noodles are billed as "life-changing" and we would have to agree.
140 King Street, Newcastle Ramen noodles are the star (alongside the gyoza) at Susuru, with a lengthy offering of noodle dishes on the menu.
Leave your manners at the door because at this Japanese restaurant, slurping is encouraged when you tuck in to a big bowl of their ramen soup noodles (the word 'susuru' translates to slurp).
They even have giant bibs for adults.
The noodle menu offers 11 dishes, including vegan and gluten-free options, which are all topped with tasty tidbits. There's a delicious katsu curry ramen, which is served with panko-crumbed pork loin, but it's hard to go past the spicy miso butter ramen, which combines noodles in pork broth with spiced three miso paste, topped with marinated egg, charred corn, butter, shallots, chashu pork and chilli sesame oil.
This week they launched shijimi miso ramen, which pairs clams with red and white miso, as part of their "ramen tour of Japan" specials.
The Humble Thai
27 King Street, Newcastle The Humble Thai began operating a year ago, offering a menu which combines traditional dishes with their own modern creations. Noodles are, of course, part of that, including the classics pad thai and pad sieu, fried hokkien noodles with chilli jam, as well as noodle soups (laksa; prawn tom yum; and braised pork with rice noodle soup which combines eight-hour slow-cooked pork with five spice, Chinese broccoli and fried garlic).
There's enough room for spaghetti noodles on the menu, too.
Their signature dish is the Seafood Humble Pasta with wok-fried spaghetti, prawn, scallop and fish fillet in hot sauce with holy basil, garlic and chilli.
"This is the best cure for hangover," says owner Nikki.
A new addition to the spring menu this month is spaghetti noodles with green curry chicken. Hats off for daring to be different.
53 Young Street, Carrington A long-standing favourite in Newcastle, Kitami's Carrington location offers seven noodle dishes which are all made in-house at the casual Japanese eatery.
The ramen menu (egg noodles and soup) includes a choice of vegetarian or vegan, miso, shoyu or curry (all $13), or udon (thick Japanese noodles with soup) with either teriyaki chicken, tempura (mixed or vegetable) or the standard udon.
Their signature house ramen (with creamy fish soup) is the best-seller, but if you drop in, try the chef's recommendation of the shio ramen, which has a salty broth that is packed with flavour.
Another spot serving up Japanese noodles in Carrington is Cafe Inu (43 Denison Street), which has a ramen special on the menu until the end of September.
267 Hunter Street, Newcastle
Each Asian country has its own take on noodles and, in Vietnam, it's all about pho, the rice noodle soup which is traditionally served with sliced beef in beef broth with loads of fresh herbs and bean sprouts. In Newcastle, Saigon Feast is regularly touted as the best place for a bowl of pho.
The pho is the star attraction at the restaurant, with the rice noodle soup packed with tender, flavoursome rare beef, beef brisket, beef balls, tripe, tendon and sliced onions, finished with basil, bean sprouts, lemon and hoisin chilli sauce.
Not into beef? The pho is also available with chicken or tofu.
360a High Street, Maitland
Specialising in Japanese and Korean cuisine, Beud's noodle menu includes udon and ramen soups (with choices of tempura vegetable, teriyaki chicken, mixed seafood, fried tofu or dumplings, kimchi, or their delicious bulgogi beef) as well as yaki udon (stir fried version of udon).
It's hard to go past the Korean japchae stir fried noodles though, which combine glassy, sweet potato noodles with vegetables and tender marinated thinly sliced bulgogi beef. Yum!
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