Zha Jiang Mien 炸醬麵
Restaurant Name: Good Hope Noodle
Cuisine: Hong Kong Style Noodles and Congee
Average Price per Person: $30 to $40 HKD or $4 to $5 USD
Location: Mong Kok, Kowloon, Hong Kong (please refer to the map below for details)
Recommendations: Pork Knuckle, Beef Brisket Lo Mien and Zha Jiang Mien 炸醬麵
Ratings (out of 5)
Bang for Buck: 4
I love me some good Zha Jiang Mien! My cousin Ashley and her man Jonathan, recently introduced me to a legit Hong Kong style noodle and congee spot called
Go Hoe Noodle Good Hope Noodle. It’s a tiny old school restaurant in Mong Kok that gives off a local, “you better know what you’re ordering, inhale your food fast and get the eff out sort of vibe.” This place is known for Chinese favorites such as Wonton Noodles, Braised Pork Knuckle, Congee and Zha Jiang Mien. What stood out the most to me was the Zha Jiang Mien – a Chinese noodle dish topped with a saucy pork and salty fermented bean paste.
Traditional Northern China Zha Jiang Mien is usually made with thick wheat noodles. However, down here in Hong Kong, most places use high alkaline skinny egg noodles. I opted for thick egg noodles instead increasing the surface area of the noodles in hopes of getting more of that sawwsee in every bite!
Unlike some of the other noodle restaurants I’ve been to, Good Hope serves their pork and fermented bean sauce on the side so you can adjust the sauciness of your noodles. I like my noodles extra saucy so I used all of it!
The Zha Jiang Mien is also served with a small bowl of broth so you can adjust the consistency of your sauce and the moisture of your noodles. I added a little too much broth to mine making the sauce a little on the runny side. I usually add about half the bowl of broth to my noodles.
Like the title of this post suggests, it’s a hot mess. It may look sloppy but it tastes friggin delicious! The pork tastes similar to thin strips of barbecue pork which match perfectly with the salty sweet fermented bean sauce. The broth helps tie the sauce and the noodles together creating something worth going to Mong Kok for.
Good Hope is also known for their congee or rice porridge. We had the 及弟粥, i’m not exactly sure what this is called in English. It’s essentially a plethora of mystery pork innards including intestines, liver and kidney. Sounds delicious right? I actually never ate this stuff before moving to Hong Kong, but now I’m willing to try anything at least once. The congee itself was really nice and consisted of small flakey broken grains of rice that melted in my mouth. As for the pig offal, I’ll admit, there were particular organs I found hard to swallow. I’m not a particularly large liver entusiast, apart from foie gras and pâté. I wasn’t feelin’ the grainy texture or the strong aftertaste of the boiled liver. Nor do I particularly enjoy intestines, otherwise known as poop shoots unless they’re deep fried and extremely well cleaned but you’re never really sure how good of a job was done until you pop one in your mouth and hope for the best. I think I was a little too adventurous this time and likely won’t be doing a double take on this mixed pig organ congee. If you’ve never had pig offal, I’d suggest ordering a congee for beginners with some beef slices or pork meatballs otherwise you may just get turned off by congee forever ever ever.
Pork Knuckle is another one of those foods I just didn’t enjoy eating prior to residing in Hong Kong. I have learned to like it! Good Hope’s Braised Pork Knuckle is tastyyyy and jam packed with flavor. The meat was tender, succulent and fell off the bone.
The Shrimp Wontons were pretty tasty too but nothing spectacular.
One downfall of Good Hope was the questionable amount of MSG they use in their food. After eating this meal, my cousin and I both had major headaches and got mad thirsty. We were likely hella dehydrated from all the MSG they add to their food. But whatever, that’s cheap eats in Hong Kong for ya!
Good Hope Noodle has moved since this review and now have two locations!
Shop 5-6, G/F, 18 Fa Yuen Street, Mong Kok, Hong Kong
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Shop 5-6, G/F, 18 Fa Yuen Street, Mong Kok