Foxtail & Broomcorn | Hong Kong
Foxtail & Broomcorn serves all types of Asian noodles and is named after two grains used in the making of noodles for the past 4000 years. One of their marketing tag line is MSG Free and after being challenged by a friend about what's so bad about MSG, I decided to educate myself on this matter. MSG stands for monosodium glutamate and is widely used in Japanese and Chinese cuisines. It was first discovered in seaweed in Japan and is said to contribute an umami flavor when added to food. Glutamate is actually found in lots of natural protein-rich foods like tomato, Parmesan, mushrooms and potatoes while there is no chemical difference between natural glutamate and those found in MSG so they are both treated exactly the same by our bodies. Therefore, MSG is actually perfectly safe for the vast majority of people to consume. While it's true that some people complain about unpleasant symptoms like headaches after consuming MSG, there is no clear scientific evidence that links MSG to those symptoms. Feel free to read more on this here, video here and infographic here. I just think it's important that people do not just accept that something is true without proper evidence.
Okay back to the restaurant. I passed by it a few times and I was attracted by the big neon ampersand sign on top so went to investigate. I discovered that they mainly serve a wide variety of Asian soup noodles (yay my favorite!) like Japanese, Taiwanese, Thai and Malaysian for example. Prices are reasonable from $68-$98 with no service charge.
The decor is clean and simple with seats at the bar, a bar counter by the wall, and several small tables. I just love the turquoise color scheme throughout!
Gurney ($88) - I ended up trying this signature Malaysian dish here since I love spicy noodles. When they took my order, they asked me if I can eat spicy to which I reply with a resounding yes. When my noodles came, an extra side of chili paste was also provided to my delight. With a mix of fresh Hokkien noodles and thin rice noodles, the broth was quite flavorful with a hint of spiciness but I felt the prawn flavor in the broth could be much stronger compared to others I've had in the past. I was pleasantly surprised though with the amount of fresh prawns and pulled pork in the noodles. MSG or not, I thought that this was one solid bowl of prawn noodle soup. [4/5]
As I was leaving, I was handed this loyalty card to collect 10 stamps to redeem one bowl of noodle.
Verdict - while the prices may seem a bit pricey compared to traditional prawn noodle shops that are charging ~$50, I was pretty satisfied with my bowl of soup noodle though I don't think I would come here just for that. I think this place would be good for those who'd like the convenience of being able to sample cross-ethnic noodle dishes all in one shop.
Foxtail & Broomcorn
84 Jervois Street, Sheung Wan
+852 2415 2555
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