The Girl Who Ate Everything

Blogging about food and whatever since 2004.

Noodle Village and Worst Black Sesame Ice Cream Ever


The Devilish Ramen at Noodle Village sounded too intriguing to pass up. Nothing screams, "EAT ME!" quite like the ultimate embodiment of evil. ...In noodle form.

According to John, the receiver of the noodles with Devil-like qualities, the ramen was disappointingly not mucus membrane-scorching enough, despite the menu's warning that it was "very spicy." Lies, all lies! It seems that the redness of the soup was just a ruse, causing you to expect sweat-filled, tear-inducing pain where there was none. He ended up mixing in the complimentary hot sauce and chili paste that came on every table, but it shouldn't have needed the extra kick. It should've made him cry tears of burning.

Overall, it seemed like the noodles were tasty enough, but did not contain delicious evil like the name would suggest.

fish cake noodle soup (wide rice noodles)
My noodles!

I went with homemade fish cake end cut noodle soup with wide rice noodles. (Rice noodles are my favorite type of noodle: kind of elastic, kind of chewy, super cheap, and lighter than most other noodles. Flat, thin, in wide sheets, I WILL EAT IT IN ANY FORM, BWAHAHA NONOODLEISSAFE.) I had no idea what "end cut" referred to when I placed my order (I like being surprised, as long as the surprise isn't alive and wriggling), but I was satisfied with the springy, somewhat spongy, fish-based rectangular chunks surrounded by a firmer layer of fried-ness that were embedded in my tangled mass of noodles. For those who are uninitiated with the world of fish cakes and fish balls, they're basically reformed pulverized fish meat with extra flavors. Like salt! Magical salt! And stuff. I have to admit, even though I've been eating fish cakes and fish balls ever since I was little, I've never made them nor tried to figure out what was actually in them. It's a mystery. Like a hot dog.

...On that note, I'd totally eat a fish cake dog. Surely someone can just make a fish cake log and stick that in a bun. And top it with something condiment-y. Kathy is telling me right now that this could be really gross, but I'd be willing to give it a shot. I mean, someone had to look at an egg come out of a chicken's butt and go, "Hey, I'd eat that! Even if it's potentially gross." I look at a fish cake log and say, "Hey, I'd eat that! In a bun. Even if it's potentially gross."

fish ball noodle soup
Fish ball noodles

The fish balls in Olivia's fish ball noodle soup were a whole 'nother breed compared to my fish cakes. I was taken aback by the super soft, mozzarella-like consistency of the balls, which told me me that I've probably never had this fresh of a version before. But I like chewiness in my reformed fish mash, with a bit of "boing" in every bite. I'm not sure I can get used to the mozz-like version.

beef brisket noodle soup

Nathan approved of his beef brisket noodle soup. He originally asked for the braised pork hock noodle soup, but the waiter suggested he get something else. Whether this was because the pork hock was particularly flawed that night or because Nathan is white and the waiter thought it wouldn't appeal to his palate has yet to be determined. I haven't witnessed much dish discrimination against non-Chinese people (probably because...I'm Chinese), but I've heard of it happening. Well. Maybe the pork hock just sucks.

beef brisket noodles

And, behold, wheaty yellow noodley strands! They emerge among the beef chunks!


Tristan decided to taint our nearly 100% noodle-pure table with his non-noodle filled mustard green and pumpkin congee. I think he ate it all. He tends to do that. A growing boy needs his rice porridge mashings.

Chinese brocs!

We all shared an order of Chinese broccoli with oyster sauce. Jebus, I love this stuff. Like many Chinese vegetables, it's just cooked to the point of not being raw. The leaves retain crispiness without being too fibrous. I love crunching through the thick stalks...ripping them apart...hearing their dying screams. Thus is the joy derived from eating fresh vegetables, aside from feeling healthy. They taste good even without the accompanying oyster sauce, but I can't say the sauce doesn't help give it that extra something—that something called "vegetarian-unfriendly meaty richness." Yeah. Well, just avoid it if you're vegetarian.

dumplings! innards of dumpling

We also shared an order of steamed pork dumplings. I don't remember much about them, so I suppose they didn't suck, nor blow my mind. These were probably better than average though—thinly skinned and stuffed with pork bits.

Olivia + bubble tea

We walked up the street to Green Tea Cafe so Olivia could quench her raging desire for bubble tea. Except I don't think Green Tea Cafe did the trick. Wrong bubbles, wrong temperature...something or other failed. One day Olivia will get the perfect bubble tea. One day.

black sesame ice cream

As I'm not a bubble tea fan (I used to be until one fateful summer day, a higher power said to me, "Chewing those tapioca balls is a pain in the butt; you should just drink water"), I went with a promising sounding scoop of black sesame ice cream from their prominent ice cream menu that was displayed on every table and on the front door of the cafe and anywhere else where it could burn into your retinas. Unfortunately, this ice cream sucked balls. Yet I still ate it because I'm a slave to the toasty drool-inducing flavor of black sesame. What was wrong with this ice cream? It had a consistency similar to cookie dough, but tackier, perhaps if the dough had dried up a bit, or shriveled up by its own lack of desire to live. It seemed that I may have been given the last dregs of whatever nearly barren container the ice cream had be borne forth from. Epic fail.

Nathan and the weird ice cream wut is this (Nathan's ice cream)
Nathan has a confusion.

Try to guess what this flavor is. Mint chocolate chip? That would make too much sense, considering that it's green and has brown chunks in it, but it was actually supposed to be fruit. Like apricot. Which is tasted nothing like. We all tried a bit and came to the same conclusion: "FLAVOR IS INDECIPHERABLE." I wouldn't say it tasted bad—it's still ice cream after all—it just didn't taste like anything...identifiable. Strange. Yup.

mango (John's ice cream)
Third time's a charm.

John's mango ice cream was at least somewhat in the "pastel orange" mango color family, but still managed to taste a bit off. Or maybe my taste buds just stopped caring.

Tristan likes his green drink with jello bits

Tristan chugged down a neon green liquid with bits of fruit-based matter and jelly-based matter. That's not the real name of the drink, but it's probably more accurate than whatever the actual name is. I only took a small sip, so I can't recall what it tasted like. Slimer?

Noodles, fish cake, and weird ice cream—I sure treat my body good.


Noodle Village
13 Mott St
New York, NY 10013

Green Tea Cafe
45 Mott St
New York, NY 10013


Kristen Young / May 20, 2008 1:22 AM

In the Lonely Planet Bangkok guide, the author calls fish balls/cakes "Asian Spam"

Reading this makes me crave Thai street vendor noodles... DAMMIT D:

mj / May 20, 2008 2:46 AM

We actually do eat fishcake with bread in Asia.
Ever heard of Otak Otak? It is a Southeast Asian dish of fishpaste, grilled with spices (kinda like satay, but with fish meat) and wrapped in a banana leaf.

If you come to Singapore, you will find baked buns with otak otak fillings in them. (And lots more actually, not just the usual char siew and red bean paste stuff.) I haven't seen otak being served in between a hot dog bun though.

Gijsyo / May 20, 2008 4:18 AM

So... Many... Noodles!
The beef brisket soup nood thing looks great. The Sesame ice cream looks like it's been made with the contents of a used ash tray ;) Better luck next time Robyn.

Morten / May 20, 2008 4:39 AM

About the fish dogs: We have those here. Come get some! :) (I've never tried them, it sounds gross, but perhaps their edible)

AppetiteforChina / May 20, 2008 6:29 AM

I haven't found an black sesame ice cream anywhere (even China & Hong Kong) that matches up to the one at Chinatown Ice Cream Factory. I would just stick to that place. It's an easy walk from anywhere in Chinatown.

SuperChomp / May 20, 2008 8:07 AM

Flat, broad, thin rice noodles are my favourite; they're just so slick and slippery. Perfect for voracious scarfing down in a splishy, messy fashion. Yum.
Fish balls and fish cakes do have that certain something unlike anything in Western cuisine, don't they? The texture is the product of the vigorous kneading and beating the mixture goes through. I'm not a big fan of the flavour, but will eat them for their unique sproinginess.

John / May 20, 2008 8:21 AM

Ahahahaaa... funniest first paragraph evahhhh!

Or maybe it's just because it's about me. ._.

Heidi / May 20, 2008 8:45 AM

Ah, I can understand your friend's disappointment with the non-spicy soup. I also like my foods piping hot, meaning that a runny nose=good stuff! :D Too bad your ice cream wasn't good, obviously it is possible to screw up ice cream... And that Tristan's drink looked really cool, love the colour! (And his expression, matches well with the bright drink! :D)

Kristen / May 20, 2008 9:40 AM

I just remembered, 7/11 in Bangkok sells fish cake dogs. Seem to be pretty popular there.

Then again Thai people eat a lot of weird stuff...

Julie / May 20, 2008 2:05 PM

Mmmm, noodles! And pumpkin congee--sounds delicious!

I'm bummed that your ice cream adventure was full of fail. No wonder you turned to gelato. And I agree--that green drink does look ectoplasmic!

Carl / May 20, 2008 2:21 PM

It was probably devil noodles because it was just a trick the whole time to get you to THINK it would be spicy. See, master of lies and stuff. So his rage was probably the perfect result of the devilry.

Speaking of chunks in drinks. I got a couple of cans of, er, "coconut water" from the Goya aisle at the grocery store; the stuff totally had diced coconut floating in it like a snow globe. Kinda cool. And the aluminum is really thick. Goes great with gin.

rambling. time to stop typing.

Ulla / May 20, 2008 2:30 PM

This place looks great! I am trying to get my boyfriend to open up to Chinese style noodles. He lived in Japan for a bit and loves Ramen but I think it is so less sophisticated then Chinese noodles. Do you recommend this place for its soups? Do you have a favorite Chinese soup place in the city? We always end up going to Japanese style noodle shops and I think that are great but they can not be compared(IMO) to how the Chinese do noodles. I took him to yummy noodle one of my favs but he was not impressed by the broth. The beef brisket soup looks great!

Olivia / May 20, 2008 5:37 PM

Saint's Alp tea house unsweetened black tea with tapioca balls.

perfect bubble tea. consumed for for the first time yesterday.

am moving out of its neighborhood this friday.

i am literally crying in tapioca pearls about this fact.

Michelle / May 20, 2008 7:11 PM

If I remember correctly, fishballs/fishcakes are basically a slab of fish paste slapped to the table and pressed over and over again for its "bounce."
I can't wait to go back to Hong Kong this summer for some authentic curried fishballs from street vendors =]

roboppy / May 20, 2008 10:13 PM

Kristen: Hm..I guess I can see the comparison to spam. I prefer fish cakes! If only I had a Thai 7-11 near me...yes.

mj: I haven't heard of that before! Next time I'm ever in get me some of that.

Gijsyo: Mm, delicious ash.

Morten: Eat one for me!

AppetiteforChina: I actually prefer Sundaes and Cones! I used to love CICF though. ._.

SuperChomp: Sproinginess is a word I need to use more often.

John: It's awesomer cos it's about you!

Heidi: River of mucus is always a good sign. And yup, that expression matches the drink very well!

Ed: Ooo...that does look tasty. Just replace the stick with a bun.

Sera: If only I had...pumpkin ice cream.

Julie: Gelato has a lower fail rate. It wiiins.

ansi: True dat...or I'll walk to SUNDAES AND CONES, WEEE.

Carl: Noo, you must never stop the rambling comments! They make my life funner!!!

I like chunkeh fruit drinks. Mm...floaty...chunks.

Heidi: HAHA...yes, somewhat.

Mm fish stick dog.

Olivia: :(

Those are some chewy tears.

Michelle: MM YES BOUNCE. Or "sproinginess." I've never seen em being made before! That could be interesting...

reese / May 20, 2008 10:20 PM

My fav is Flat Rice Noodle in Beef Soup. It is close to achieving the perfect food status in my world. Fish cake in hot dog bun is not that weird. When I was living in Japan last fall, the 7-Eleven there sell Fish Hot Dogs. It was actually good. The weird one has to be Spaghetti in Hot Dog Bun. (As in spaghetti stuffed between hot dog bun, seriously) It is a huge hit among the teens.

Mila / May 20, 2008 10:49 PM

I love chinese broccoli with oyster sauce or even better, sauteed garlic, topped with toasted garlic. Eat with steamed rice, feel healthy in the innards.

At first I thought, no, there are no fish hotdogs, fish balls and fish cakes yes. But wait a minute! We do have what could be considered a hotdog, except we call it a smoked sausage, longganisa, and one version uses milkfish instead of pork. If you google "bangus longganisa" you might very well find what you're looking for, and it might very well be available at a local Filipino grocery in NYC. But it might not. Sorry Robyn! If you're ever here though, I'll make sure you get to eat some to see if it fits your vision of a fish hotdog.

angela / May 20, 2008 11:43 PM

that red ramen sure looks evil... spicy evil.

i could be the minority here but i'm not a big fan of fish balls. they just don't do it for me. i prefer them fried.

congee is such comfort food, yum, yum...

btw, congratulations on the new apartment :)

janet / May 21, 2008 2:40 PM

what is with that fake ice cream?! that should NOT be allowed.

Chinese-veg-style news: I have been recently getting into PEA SHOOTS with garlic. I heart them. And they have cute curliques.

Christina / May 21, 2008 3:30 PM

Bummer about the Devilish Ramen. It's always disappointing when something is supposed to be really spicy isn't. Epic let down. =(

Tristan's drink looks really good. It also has to do with green being my favorite color!

roboppy / May 21, 2008 10:02 PM

reese: I had yakisoba in a hot dog bun once; that sucked! Epic fail! I can't imagine spaghetti is any better. Euh.


Damn, I needs me a Filipino grocery store! I haven't seen one before. :( Obviously, I just need to get my butt over there.

Angela: I'm a fan of fried fish balls in addition to the non fried. But I do welcome the fried version of most things. Or everything.

Moving day isn't far away, aiee!

the inscrutable chicken: Oh man, I totally wanna see that movie! I did watch some of it...the really intense parts where they're making the balls and bouncing them and whatever, but I haven't seen the whole thing. I gotta get on that.

Janet: I LOVE PEA SHOOTS YES I DO. Chinese veggies rock so hard.

Christina: I used to love green, but then I went to high school where it was the OFFICIAL SCHOOL COLOR and wasn't long before I loathed it.

But I think I like green more now that I've been out of high school for 5 years. Yeah. Haha. Ha. So traumatized.

Manda / May 23, 2008 12:02 PM

Wasn't there a Hi-C with Slimer on the front called Ecto-cooler? :D

I love me some noodly goodness. That brisket looks great! And I love pulverized unidentifiable things like fishballs. Mmm...

Rachelle / May 31, 2008 10:05 AM

I looooooooooooove flat rice noodles too!!! Whenever I get wonton noodles, I always get it with flat rice noodles instead of squiggly yellow noodles.

Incidentally....a chain of Japanese bakeries in Hong Kong sells chikuwa on a bun. Looks like it has cheese and QP mayo too. Never tried it though...I prefer my buns sweet...and without cheese. That chain also sells sweet potato in a bun that looks like a sweet potato. Mmmmmmmmmm. Sweet carbs in a carby wrapping.

roboppy / June 3, 2008 1:50 AM

Manda: I remember that drink! Yes, it existed. But I never tried it. :[

Rachelle: Sweet potato-shaped sweet potato bun sounds really good. Mmmhmmm.

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