The present Kanzhu restaurant, near Wilson's ave. San Juan, Used to be a similar looking Hand-pulled noodle restaurant. For Whatever reason, the old restaurant was absorbed by the Kanzhu hand-pulled noodles restaurant group found in Timog ave. Q.C.They both serve Lanzhou-style lamian. I was a little disappointed when the old one closed since they do serve very excellent Lamian noodles, plus the place is close to where I work. I haven't tried out Kanzhu yet, so I was bit apprehensive when they took It's place. Fortunately, my fears are unfounded when I fish they're dishes quite as good.
As you can see I ordered stir-fried noodles with beef and vegetables, my usual order here. You can see it is quite a hefty amount. One order can satisfy 3 people, and for 160 Pesos per order it is a real bargain.
Despite it's oily and starchy appearance, I can finish a whole serving of these and not feel bloated that one get's from eating Chinese food. Those are good sign of a well made fresh natural Chinese noodles.
The original restaurant is manned by a Chinese chef from the mainland, and he makes superb smooth and really chewy noodles. Recently, most of the hand-pulling are now made by highly trained Filipino chefs. The quality of their noodles is quite equal in quality. Like any authentic Lanzhou-style lamian, they only make and pull the noodles upon order. You can guaranty in it's freshness. The soup broth are not that strong in the Mutton taste than in the past but are still equally tasty. It has that clean and refreshing taste that are different to the fatty broth that one gets from chicken and pork.
Lanzhou-style lamian are hand-pulled noodles as famously seen in various culinary documentaries discussing Chinese Cuisine. In fact Hand-pulled or Lamian noodles are just one from various types of noodles. There are Hand-Shave, Hand-cut, extruded type.. just to name a few, but the most common are the Machine-cut type. One can never tell which one is more superior since each one have their own faults and virtues.
There are even different style of hand pulled noodles and each one stems from what region in China it came. Lanzhou-style lamian came from the north-west part of china. Depending on the what they favor there are the Thin kind to a more thicker version of the noodle, with a slight different technique in pulling and twisting to achieved it.
Since Lanzhou is heavily populated by Chinese of Islamic faith, the food tend to be Halal, with the meat and soup broth are of Beef and Mutton. The Mutton smell and flavor is very evident especially to new costumers who are more used to the common Canton style noodles one finds in the Philippines. Unlike it's predecessor that limit itself to just noodles and dumplings, Kanzhu also serves regular Chinese fare for those who wanted a little more variety. Some people might be put-off by the Lanzhou taste, but I would certainly urge them to try it for themselves, and who knows you might get to grow to like it. I sure did.
The Kanzhu restaurant in San Juan is located rather in out away place than the various, more popular eateries that dotted nearby area along Wilson's ave. I would definitely recommend this place, not only to Noodles aficionados, but to any one who wants to have a superb dinning experience with friends and family. You'll be surprised in finding this little gem among roughs.
This is were you'll find this map handy.
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Kanzhu hand-pulled noodles
8001 Jose Abad Santos, San Juan, Metro Manila, Philippines