Cheap Eats: China Town's Noodle King

A deft hand toss is Noodle King

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A deft hand toss is Noodle King’s crowning achievement

Royal Treat
When I ordered the hot and spicy seafood noodle soup with hand-tossed noodles ($8.95; $6.95 with regular noodles) at Noodle King, the last thing I expected to see was owner Huiyu Liu making the noodles to order. I found myself peeking behind the curtain between the dining room and kitchen to watch as the chef braided, pulled  and generally performed an impressive aerobic workout. The resulting noodles were delicious: chewy, thick, with a fresh flavor that’s most apparent when they’re eaten right away (they get a bit doughy as takeout). The chile-flecked, seafood-scented broth hid curls of calamari, fresh mussels, tiny shrimp and still-firm bok choy. The meatball noodle soup ($6.50; $8.50 with hand-tossed noodles) is another smart choice, with tender pork meatballs bathed in a deeply flavorful broth. All of this in a clean, nicely decorated room—I’m already planning my next meal there. Lunch and dinner daily. International District, 522 S King St., 206.623.3905.

Originally published in June 2010