Lan Zhou Zheng Zong La Mian (兰州正宗牛肉拉面 ) was a place we happened to just stop by when I was in Shanghai, my friend and I were looking for something quick to eat by his apartment and we stopped by this place because it looked interesting and it was really close to his apartment. It was a run down little shop that had lots of pictures inside with all of their dishes.
I’m not sure where the guys who ran the place were from, but I’m pretty sure they weren’t Han Chinese as they looked sort of Chinese, but were darker in complexion and looked more Central Asian. They also spoke a very strange dialect that I’ve never heard before and were Muslim.
The menu read like a typical Lan Zhou type noodle soup shop, but the spicing was way different than normal Chinese spicing.
Here’s what we got:
Red Braised Beef Noodle Soup (Hong Shao Niu Rou Mian):
The noodles were freshly hand-pulled and had a very good al dente texture. The broth and the meat were way different in the way they spiced them. They had a lot of different spices in them including cumin, it really didn’t even taste Chinese; the flavor was much more almost Middle Eastern or Central Asian. It was very interesting. I thought it was a bit too salty and the beef wasn’t quite as tender as it should be, but overall it was reasonably tasty. I would say that I prefer the regular style though all things being equal. 7.5/10
Stir Fried Knife Cut Noodles (Chao Dao Shao Mian):
My friend got this dish, it was stir fried knife cut noodles. The noodles were very good again and were cut a bit on the thick side, but I liked them that way. The sauce was exactly the same sauce that was in the beef noodle soup I had. It was a bit on the salty side as well, but I thought it was a bit better than my beef noodle soup. 7.75/10
Scrambled Egg With Tomato (Xi Hong Shi Chao Ji Dan):
This is a pretty typical dish in Taiwan, but they probably make it in China as well. We ordered it because we both like the dish. The preparation was similar to normal, but the spicing was quite a bit different again utilizing the same spices that were in the other two dishes. This was probably the best dish of the three, doesn’t look like much, but it was good.
Overall, it wasn’t amazing, but it was pretty good. It was definitely interesting as it was unlike any noodle place I’ve ever been to. I forgot what the address was.