Friday, February 22, 2013
Savory Lamb Hand-pulled Noodles at the Unintentional House of Pancakes
Since House of Pancakes is a mere block from Shandong Deluxe (see earlier posts) with its similar proletarian prices for hand-made noodles and dumplings, comparisons are unavoidable. Most importantly, in the case of both houses, the noodles are excellent, hearty and chewy. If anything, the noodles at UHOP were slightly less chewy, though they didn't lean toward undesired softness until I neared the bottom of the bowl. The broth at House of Pancakes was notably more savory than Shandong's "qing tang" broth (I'm guessing a pork bone and chicken stock). The lamb, in both cases, was lean and tender (though I'd hope for slightly fattier cuts) and a generous proportion. As far as overall serving size goes, Shandong Deluxe uses slightly larger bowls, but both restaurants' portions verge on excessive, so I can't award House of Pancakes demerits on that score. In terms of service (never really a big issue with me) I found both places efficient with UHOP slightly more cheerful, though I have yet to observe it under the hectic conditions that Shandong Deluxe's popularity has brought to it.
What's to choose? House of Pancakes and Shandong Deluxe both offer fresh, hearty well-priced noodle fare. We're lucky to have these two places emerge in recent months. I only wish they were closer to me.
And oh, yes, I'll get to those "pancakes" -- eventually.
Where Slurped: House of Pancakes, 937 Taraval Street, San Francisco