The Chinatown Express is situated at 63-65 Stowell Street, Newcastle upon Tyne.
If you live in or visit Newcastle upon Tyne and love Chinese food then you need to visit the Chinatown Express. I will admit it’s not the most appealing restaurant from the outside as its rather plain and cheap looking. You are seated quickly, served quickly and leave quickly and they don’t accept debit or credit cards but once you look past that you are in for some delicious food. It is also worth noting that it’s not a traditional starter followed by a main course type of place either; starters come first, of course, but your main will generally come as soon as it is ready. I always quite enjoy this aspect so don’t let it put you off
The family Gourmand are not one’s to eat the usual sweet and sour, chow mein or curry sauce dishes, we like to be a bit more experimental and this place is fantastic for us. They not only serve dishes catered for an English palette but also serve traditional dishes and you will find that the restaurant is always filled with Chinese people.
The menu is vast and you can find dishes containing chicken feet, intestines and salted fish. We have been visiting this establishment for over 5 years now and have never been disappointed.
On our latest visit both myself and Mr Gourmand wanted to try something we’ve not had before so I opted for Dry fried Beef Ho Fun (£6.70) washed down with a Honey Melon Pearl (£3.00). The Beef tasted like it had been marinated in sherry, it was sweet and succulent and perfectly cooked. The noodles are 4 times the width of a regular noodle and flat making them rather filling, Mr Gourmand managed a couple of forkfuls but I had to leave some in my bowl. If you have never tasted a pearl drink you should, they are not to everyone’s taste. You drink the sweet liquid through a very wide straw and if you’re lucky get a tapioca ball with every mouthful, it’s more of a dessert than a drink as it’s rather filling on its own but I find the sweetness counterbalances the saltiness of the food.
Mr Gourmand often struggles with deciding on the perfect meal when a menu is this large. He mentally chooses a number of dishes pre-order and opts to rely on ‘instinct’ (his description, not mine) when the waiter looks his way. This roughly translates to Mr Gourmand stabbing a finger at the page (similar to picking a winner at the Grand National) and often results in him picking something totally random followed by jealousy of my meal when the dishes are both served. This time was thankfully an exception as he calmly opted for Three kinds of Shredded Meat Fried Noodle (£6.70) and Jasmine Tea (£1.00). I was only able to taste some of the noodle as the dish contained pork which I don’t eat. First impressions were of how much food there actually was on the plate, a small mountain no less of pork, chicken, Char Sui (marinated pork), spring onions, carrots and bean sprouts all sitting on a mound of soft noodles. As always the flavours were beautifully combined resulting in a very fulfilling lunch that could not be faulted.
If you’re a regular reader of my blog you can be sure to find more delicious and appetising food from the Chinatown express featured in many of my upcoming blog posts.