The team behind the BAO group of restaurants are set to turn from buns to noodles, with their new BAO Noodle Shop opening in Shoreditch on 6 July.
A short distance from Shoreditch High Street station, BAO’s first ever Noodle Shop will take its cues from the beef noodle shops of Taiwan, specialising in steaming bowls of Taiwan’s much-loved national dish.
Each morning, the chefs will begin their day by preparing fresh wheat noodles, with specialty flour imported from Taiwan to give them structure and bounce. As lunch begins, guests to the considered dining room can jot down their choices on BAO Noodle Shop’s concise order forms.
To start, three new versions of BAO’s cult favourite buns will join the line-up: a panko shrimp croquette BAO with sweet and sour sauce, an Iberico pork BAO with garlic mayo, black garlic sauce and shredded cabbage and a sweetcorn congee BAO with spring onion tofu sauce and soy pickled chilli.
For dumpling lovers, there’s boiled cull yaw lamb dumplings, while elsewhere on the starters list will be crispy tripe, onion dip; eel and smacked cucumber; glazed pork chop, crispy egg; fried Ogleshield cheese rolls; and lu rou fan, a comforting dish of braised pork belly, with egg and fish floss rice.
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At BAO Noodle Shop, bowlfuls of shimmering beef noodle soup will be the star of show, with two versions available. The first, a classic Taipei-style broth (£12.50) that closely matches the style of the beef noodle soup found across Taiwan, will be rich in flavour, with slow braised beef cheek and beef shortrib, spiced beef butter and fermented greens.
Secondly, there will be BAO’s take on a Tainan-style broth (£11.80) based on recipes from the southwest of the island – a much lighter broth with imported 400 day-aged white soy and thin slices of rare poached rump cap, for diners who like to drink from the bowl. Both broths will be made with aged beef bones, fermented chilli bean paste and assorted spices, and guests will have the option of adding cured egg; crispy egg; or spiced beef butter to their bowls.
To end on a sweet note, BAO Noodle Shop will serve new BAOBING, two versions of a Taiwanese shaved ice dessert piled high with fruits and cream – visitors can take their pick from strawberry cheesecake or tiramisu flavour. BAO’s classic fried Horlicks ice cream BAO will also feature on the dessert list.
Founder and creative director Erchen Chang says, “Beef noodle is a national obsession in Taiwan with annual competitions taken very seriously over there, so we wanted to bring these comforting bowls to London and make them with the very best ingredients.
“I’m looking forward to introducing our new BAOBING desserts as well – they remind me of hot, humid days on the streets of Taipei.”