King of Noodles
Another King of (insert food item considered sovereign among its kind here) Restaurant? Yes. Does the grandiosity of its title belie its humble nature? Again, yes. The Sunset District’s King of Noodles won’t be featured on any CNN news tickers, nor will it make Tammy Faye Bakker weep charcoal tears of joy. It’s filling, cheap and not at all bad.
One of just two customers seated at a series of battered, dark wooden tables on a tuesday evening, I sucked my hand-pulled, flat rice noodles out of a thick, delicious chicken broth filled with about six different varieties of mushroom, hunks of pork, and tendrils of egg while two cooks sat at a nearby table conversing in a highly musical Chinese, in tones that to my Western ear seemed to signal the inevitable commencement of a frying pan-wielding melee. And while I delicately broke the pinched end of one of six Shanghai soup dumplings spaced evenly in a bamboo container and observed a curl of steam rising from the hole (they’re like tiny edible sweat lodges), some other personage could be heard aggressively hocking something dark and sinister from his/her lungs somewhere in the bowels of the kitchen.
Phlegmy exclamations and confrontational banter notwithstanding (I personally think they enhanced the vibe), King of Noodle is a stalwart, economical addition to the gang of S.F. noodle/dumpling houses with titles draped in purple. Either on your way back from a nut-crippling swim at Ocean Beach, or on a break from casually leafing through a couple of Danielle Steele novels at the adjacent library, King of Noodles provides warmth, flavor, and tactile stimulation to revive your drive.
King of Noodles
1639 Irving Street,