He is always playing second fiddle to his sexier big brother, the hand-pulled noodle. After all, the art of pulling noodles, or "la mian" 拉麵 is difficult to master (trust me, I've tried taking classes in Beijing and even attempted it myself at home). Those who can do it make it look simple, but it's really not. The finished product is also delicious, full of bouncy, al dente chewiness.
To be perfectly honest, however, I must confess that I may actually prefer the texture of knife shaved noodles, or dao xiao mian 刀削麵 over the famous hand-pulled noodle. I love its slightly uneven, rough, and thicker texture that comes from the rhythmic and manual shaving of the huge block of dough.
I really enjoy chewing on those thick ribbons. They have a distinctive "Q" chew to them that is addictive. Imagine our delight when we discovered that there was a knife-shaved noodle shop less than a 5-minute walk from our apartment in Hong Kong.
We have only been to Shiwei Knife Shaved Noodles a couple times, but it has quickly become one of our favorite places for a convenient, quick, inexpensive, and tasty meal. The model is simple: pick a noodle type, style of noodle dish, toppings, and side dishes. In some cases, you can pay a little extra to add extra toppings.
Noodles start around HKD40 to HK5o and then you can pay around HKD10 for each extra topping. Side dishes cost around HKD10 to HKD50.
If you really want to enjoy the chewy texture at its best, I would recommend getting one of the cold noodles. We tried the Shiwei Signature (F01) which comprises the special knife shaved noodles topped with corn, Thousand Island dressing, dan dan paste, cucumbers, and sliced beef. [HKD58] It's an interesting fusion of flavors that was pretty interesting to try and pretty enjoyable.
For this dish you can choose between sliced pig stomach, beef, pig earl, duck "kidney", or sliced chicken. The duck "kidney" turned out to be duck gizzard, which was pretty good.
The soup ones are quite enjoyable to eat if you like ramen. We tried the Soft Boiled Egg Black Fungus Sliced Noodle. [HKD 52 + additional 8 for xtra topping] The "fungus" is actually fresh wood ear mushroom, and the soft boiled eggs are reminiscent of the marinated eggs you get in ramen dishes.
We chose to add dumplings and picked mustard greens 雪菜 (called "pickled cabbage" on the menu).
I must say, the English translations are decent but not perfect. At times I found it easier to read the Chinese to really fully understand the ingredients. For example, "mala" 麻辣 (spicy numbing) was translated as "spicy flavor" while "kou shui feng wei" 口水風味 (mouth watering flavor) was translated as "chili sauce".
Special Dishes - Appetizers / Side Dishes
It's fun to get a few side dishes to round out the meal. The Pickled Wood Ear or "Fungus" [HKD 32] is marinated in vinegar and sliced hot chilis. It's quite good.
Garlic Cucumbers [HKD 32] are chock full of garlic and have a very strong flavor.
The Sliced Pig Stomach Salad T13 [HKD35] has nice hints of raw garlic, soy sauce, and sesame oil. The stomach has a nice chewy texture and works well with the julienned cucumber. I really enjoyed the flavors of this salad.
Shiwei Knife Shaved Noodles Hong Kong - General Thoughts
We love the simplicity of this place. They do one main thing, and they do it very well. The knife shaved noodles have great texture and flavor as well. The toppings are quite good. We both really enjoyed the wontons and dumplings that were added to our noodle soup. The side dishes are fine. Some are perfectly functional (cucumber salad), while others stand out (pig stomach garlic salad).
The portion sizes are pretty generous and I can never finish my entire bowl of noodles. Prices are quite reasonable, and the staff are really, really friendly and can speak at least English, Mandarin, and Cantonese. I asked if I could take some photos of the guy shaving noodles and they were super accommodating.
All in all, we like this place and I am sure we will continue to come back on a regular basis.
Shiwei Knife Shaved Noodles Hong Kong
212-214 Wan Chai Road Store A
Wan Chai, Hong Kong
This is the forty-third post in the updated #50Postsin50Days – Take 2 Challenge. Other posts in this series will be added to the bottom of the original post.