Noodles have been a Chinese staple for over 4,000 years. The earliest sample of this dish was found in northwestern China - found preserved and overturned in a sealed bowl and buried underneath ten feet of sediment. It’s an incredible, ubiquitous medium with a wide-ranging field of influence. Chinese noodles are the ancestors of all other noodle dishes. According to popular myth, Marco Polo introduced noodles to the West during the Yuan Dynasty - in fact, noodles were widely eaten in Europe and the Middle East for centuries before Marco Polo’s birth.
Chinese noodles are incredibly diverse. Whether it’s the spicy, chili-heavy noodles of Sichuan, or the warm chicken noodle soup of Yunnan - there’s really something for everyone’s flavor profile. Most Chinese restaurants in the area have some sort of noodle dish, and many dishes have centuries of historical background. Noodles from northern China are broader and flour-based, while noodles from the south typically use eggs. Then there are rice and mung bean-based noodles that are great for soaking up the flavor. Called mian in Chinese, it’s the ultimate comfort item and you really only need one bowl to be sufficiently full.
There are a myriad of Chinese noodle options in Los Angeles. To get you started on your culinary journey, here are some of our favorites.