JTYH Heavy Noodle II | 99 Essential Restaurants 2015

JTYH Heavy Noodle II

photo by Anne Fishbein

One of the heavy hitters of the San Gabriel Valley noodle scene is JTYH Heavy Noodle II, an entirely unassuming restaurant in one of those ubiquitous strip malls. Here you’ll find fantastic Shanxi-style noodles hand-cut by the chef, Shi Peng. Well, hand-shaved might be more accurate: Using a thin metal blade that resembles the bench scraper you use to round your sourdough, Peng shaves rough strands of noodles from a smooth mound of dough; the fresh noodles then make their way into more than half of the dishes on the menu. There is, for instance, the terrific dan dan mian, or the Taiwanese beef soup. Even the moo shu pork, which is described on the menu as “cat ears” because of its shape, is worth a try, especially if your last memory of the dish involves a shopping mall food court. Unsurprisingly, fresh noodles and nicely scrambled eggs make a world of difference. The restaurant also makes great, thick-skinned bao stuffed with pork, then steamed and pan-fried until their bottoms are beautifully golden. —Tien Nguyen