Xi’an Famous Foods in the East Village is currently closed for renovations, which means I need to go elsewhere for my Chinese jajangmyun needs. Well, still relatively close, and even tastier (albeit dive-er) is Lam Zhou Handmade Noodles.
At Lam Zhou, upon order of the Dry Noodle with Minced Pork Sauce ($5.50), noodles will be freshly pulled, boiled, and then topped with minced pork sauce and lots of of bok choy. The sauce is sweeter than the sauce at Xi’an, making it more similar to Korean-Chinese jajangmyun, but definitely much thinner in consistency in comparison to the latter. As for the sauce, it’s quite meaty and you may encounter a few large chunks of pork, but don’t get too excited, those chunks will prove funky. There’s a reason why meat is minced fine and covered in lots of sauce. Still, aside from the questionable chunks of meat, the jajangmyun at Lam Zhou is my favorite in New York.
So are the frozen pork dumplings which have the thinnest skins in Chinatown. They’re so good, a dwindling bag of dumplings ($9 for 50) can always be found in my freezer. Once I bought three and the waitress suspiciously asked what I intended to do with them. Nothing untoward, of course, just satisfying a greedy desire for dumplings.
Xi’an may be closed, but there are other options. This is New York after all. And for some menu items, even better ones.
144 E Broadway (b/n Pike & Essex St; map)
New York, NY 10002