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Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Lan or Nan?

Yummy Lan Zhou Hand Drawn Noodle House
131 N 10th St
Philadelphia, PA 19107
Neighborhood: Chinatown

It's the battle of mythical proportions.  The Chinatown noodle house showdown.

Though similar in name, Lan Zhou and Nan Zhou are not the same.  Where to start?  Let's go with service.  We walked into the restaurant and stood at the entrance waiting to be seated.  When it looked like the staff wasn't paying any attention to us, we went ahead and sat ourselves.  When it looked like we were still being ignored, I went up and grabbed menus from the register for ourselves.  Finally, when it looked like we weren't go to get our orders taken, I flagged down one of the waitresses and told her we were ready.  Nan Zhou is like the New Jersey of gas stations - full service, and Lan Zhou is like other states - no service.

Because I wanted to compare Lan to Nan, I ordered what I normally order at Nan - fish ball soup.  The fish balls and broth here tasted very similar to those at Nan, so no differences there.  The noodles on the other hand appeared to have been sitting somewhere, cooked, for quite a while.  They were stuck together and I had to use both my chopsticks and spoon to pull them apart - that is, unless I wanted to eat them like they were lasagna.

Since both Lan's food and service were not on par with those at Nan (pricing is similar at both places), I will be returning to Nan and saying goodbye to Lan. 


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