CLOSED: The Bowl Noodle Bar (Toronto)

The Bowl Noodle Bar

Could the next noodle trend be for freshly made products? There has certainly been a rise in restaurants offering hand pulled (la mein) and knife shaved noodles, complete with opened kitchens so you can watch the chef at work.

The Bowl Noodle Bar, is a relatively new entrant, with a huge dining room that’s more modern compared to competing establishments. Prestotea, a bubble tea company, is also located there so diners are welcomed to stay and have a drink after slurping down the noodles.

Also catering to the younger crowd are their iPad menus, simple to use and includes photos that were surprisingly not far off from the final product. The traditional hand pulled noodle with beef ($7.99) consisted of sliced lightly marinated beef flank with little fat. The thin noodles are delicate and soft; thankfully not over cooked so they retain some elasticity. Meanwhile, the stock appeared to be chicken based, not amazing but held enough flavour.

Although the grilled chicken didn’t photograph, there was a fair amount of it within the knife shaved noodles ($7.99). Watching the chef make the dish, I was impressed by how even the width of the noodles were – there was an element of control and fluidity from the chef cutting through the dough compared to the quick moves I’ve previously seen.

The thickness of the noodles still varied, which is understandable considering the lack of machinery used. The nice long ribbons stayed separated within the soup, silky and slightly chewy.

My new favourite way of having the knife shaved noodles is in the stir fried form. Tossed with seafood (squid and shrimp) in a savoury chili sauce ($9.99), I loved the flavour you get from the sauce covering the neutral noodles and the slight wok aroma permeating the dish.

Shall I make a prediction that eventually one of these artisan shops will make its way south of Bloor and invoke line-ups? But for now, Downtowners, you may have to get on a subway (and bus) to enjoy these traditional dishes.

Overall mark - 7 out of 10

How To Find Them
 Location: Toronto, Canada
 Address: 633 Silverstar Boulevard

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Gastro World's Grading System

  • Anything under 5 - I really disliked and will never go back
  • 6 - decent restaurant but I likely won't return
  • 7 - decent restaurant and I will likely return
  • 8 - great restaurant that I'd be happy to recommend
  • 9 - fantastic restaurant that I would love to visit regularly and highly recommend
  • 10 - absolute perfection!

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