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Jun 26, 2014 12:44 PM

Suggestions for cold, asian style, noodles?

I'm looking for great cold, summer noodle dishes. The dish should include some kind of vegetable and protein and pickled vegetables are definitely a bonus. My favorite were the cold noodles at Ittyo, in the Porter Square mall. The noodles had a light miso/sesame/ginger (not exactly sure what it was) dressing and a variety of vegetables and meats on top. Unfortunately, the place changed hands a while back and the dish wasn't quite the same the last time I tried it. Do any of the newer ramen places have great cold noodles? Any other cuisines have memorable cold noodles?

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  1. Try Bon Me or Myers and Chang. I make my own most of the time, but these two places offer different versions of cold noodles with an Asian sauce. I was not as pleased with Bon Me, but I went in to their brick and mortar place in Kendall Square after their crazy lunch hour, and they all looked exhausted. Maybe it was just bad timing.

    Myers and Chang had a soba noodle dish- cold- that was delicious. I got some pickled treats on the side to give it an extra kick.

    1. There's a Korean cold noodle soup that you might like, called "nyaeng myun" that is usually offered only in the summertime. Noodles are normally buckwheat or glass noodle-style. Toppings will vary from veggies to slices of Asian pear, hard-boiled egg, and sometimes beef. The broth is cold and there will sometimes be ice cubes floating around in there. It is tangy and vinegary. I don't know who in Boston makes their own broth - I bet most will be made from an instant soup stock (lots of MSG, if you care about that sort of thing). It's one of my favorite dishes!

      1 Reply
      1. re: digga

        If you like naengmyun, try the yeolmu naengmyun at Buk Kyung in Somerville. It's got yeolmu kimchi in it - leafy radish. The cold and the spicy come together well. Might want to call ahead and make sure they are making it that day.

      2. I've enjoyed the cold-noodle appetizer at the recently opened Dumpling House on Mass Ave in Cambridge. Lots of cucumber, sesame seeds, spicy oil.

        3 Replies
        1. re: lossless

          Hmm, I've seen cucumber and jellyfish, but not cucumber and noodle. Interesting, I'll have to try it.

          1. re: lossless

            I just tried it! I liked the use of thick rice noodles. I think they may have replaced the sesame seeds with chopped peanuts today, but it was still good. Packs quite a garlic punch as well.

            1. re: ararebit

              I also had it again this past week and yes I too found chopped peanuts, not sesame seeds. For interested folks, here's a photo of it.

          2. I imagine you can find some decent bun at pretty much any Vietnamese place. Try Japanese restaurants for standards like zarusoba and somen.

            1. I love Hiyashi Chuka, but I haven't found a good version around here. Fortunately, I can make a decent version using the frozen Chuka Zanmai Ryanmen packet (look for blue packaging that says "Sesame Vinegar Flavor"). These are available at Ebisu market in Medford. My usual toppings are cucumber, ham, and egg (omelette style), all julienned.

              4 Replies
              1. re: Edokko

                Have you tried Inaka in Allston? I had some there during that brutal heat wave last summer and it hit the spot, but I'd never had it before so I'm definitely no judge.

                1. re: Allstonian

                  No, I haven't. Thanks for the tip.

                  1. re: Allstonian

                    Alas, that was a disappointment. We went to Inaka for lunch today and ordered the Hiyashi Chuka, Shoyu Ramen, and Gyoza. The Achilles heel for both noodle dishes was the broth/sauce. The ramen broth was "watery" (lacked any meaty umami) and the HC sauce was a straight-up soy sauce and vinegar job that didn't have the sesame richness that I like. (Also, no hot mustard for the HC. But they get some points for having raw minced garlic available at the table for ramen.) And the chashu (roast pork) topping for both dishes was subpar--dry and unsavory. The gyoza was the lone bright spot--a decent balance between pork and vegetable in the filling, and robust skin.

                    So the search for that elusive Hiyashi Chuka ideal continues.

                  2. re: Edokko

                    And as much as I love Hiyashi Chuka, I hate Tokoroten! It's the other prominent cold noodle dish served in summer in Japan, extruded from seaweed-based jelly.