Monday, January 21, 2013
Slurp Du Jour: Basic Beef Noodle Soup from Sorabol Hits the Spot
Sorabol, for those not familiar with Northern California, is a local Korean restaurant chain which dates back to 1979 and claims to be the first restaurant to introduce authentic Korean cuisine to Northern California. There is no doubt some exaggeration to this, but its "Sorabol Korean BBQ and Asian Noodles" mall outlets, which the firm started propagating in the 1980s, are definitely pioneers in the area of quick service Korean food and Asian noodle restaurants. They tend to be extremely popular for their large portions and low prices, and the outlet in the eastern basement food court of the Westfield San Francisco Centre is no exception.
The "Beef Noodle Soup" (not the "Spicy Beef Soup") on the Sorabol menu resembled a Taiwanese or Chinese niu rou lamian with "la" style wheat noodles and dry, thin slices of beef similar to what one might find in a "Lanzhou lamian" in Shanghai. The noodles were toothsome, if anything slightly undercooked, though I definitely prefer them that way to being overcooked. There was an ample quantity of beef which, though dry, was not tough. The savory (though not at all spicy, despite its red color) broth was enhanced with a copious amount of mushrooms and (sob) some broccoli florettes, which do not belong in any dish in any cuisine. (I'm 71 years old and don't have to eat my broccoli). It may not have been the exotic specimen of noodle culture I set out looking for, but my large $7.95 bowl of noodles at Sorabol was noodle fix-aplenty, once I got down with it.
Where slurped: Sorabol, Westfield San Francisco Centre, 865 Market St., San Francisco