Even though Yang's Noodles has had great reviews for some time, my first experience with them was in a roundabout way. Chef Don Dickonson works there and he wanted to bring some of the offal dishes he had learned there to Have an Offal Day last year. The two dishes he brought were a Chinese beef tendon dish and another with pork stomach. Of Offal Day 3, these were among the most popular and unique dishes served.
But Yang's isn't exactly nearby to me and so it's never been convenient for me. Last week I asked my foodie Chinese friend where she wanted to go expecting her to pick one of the newly opened restaurants. Instead, she picked Yang's Noodles, a place and my other Chinese friends go to often.
It was actually funny because I arrived first and said "hello" to owner Yang. He remembered me from offal day and we had a quick chat. Finally my friend arrived and he was surprised we were together as he recognized her as one of his regulars.
Turn's out Rui's desire for Yang's Noodles was because a Lamb Clay Pot had just been added to the menu and she had a craving for it. We ordered that, the beef roll, and the seasoned, shredded potato.
Rui's craving stems from the cold weather. Her clay pot dish is something she associates with winter like we do with stews. It's really what I'd consider a soup filled with thin slices of lamb and sour cabbage. The sour tang of the dish made me think that it would be a favorite among Filipinos who also love that sour flavor in savory dishes.
Yang brought out something extra for us. A dipping sauce. Rui took the slices of lamb out of the soup, dipped them in the sauce, and then ate them - separately from the soup. She said it was like getting two dishes from one.
The Chinese Beef Roll was a bit of surprise for me because it looked like a Western dish. It resembled a crepe filled with the thin slices of beef, cucumbers, and a leafy green. I really enjoyed it and we put the sauce on the beef roll as well. There was the soft, tender crepe with crunch from the cucumber sticks and the saltiness of the beef.
The seasoned, shredded potato was also a surprise only because my Western expectations were in contrast from the Chinese reality. I was picturing in my mind a hot, shredded potato cake but what we got was a bowl of cold shredded potatoes. It was lightly spiced and vinagery; it was a nice, cold contrast to our other dishes.
Yang's is located on Stockton Blvd, about 1/2 mile south of Fruitridge Rd.