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Beef noodle soup is considered to be a national dish of Taiwan, so the Taipei is brimming with beef soup restaurants. Lin Dong Fang Beef Noodle 林東芳牛肉麵 is probably one of the most well-known beef noodle soup restaurants in Taipei.
The restaurant is no frills place that is basically a street stall that has a couple different areas to sit. There is usually a line and it took us about 30 minutes to get a seat. Even though it looks somewhat intimidating, the people working there were quite nice. One of the nice things about Taiwan is that generally people are really nice. Once you sit, you order your beef noodle soup and you can go pick up any small dishes you want.
Smoked Tofu (Dou Gan)
This was standard smoked tofu with some pickled radish and red chili. It was pretty decent. 8/10
Fried Fish With Peanuts
This is tiny fried fish with peanuts that have been stir fried. This was pretty standard, but good. 8/10
Pig Ear (Er Duo)
This is pig ear in sesame oil. This was good; I always love this dish. 8.5/10
Cucumbers (Xiao Huang Gua)
These are cucumbers tossed in sesame oil and salt. The combination is always great. 8/10
Pickled Cabbage (Pao Cai)
This is pickled cabbage in a sweet vinegar sauce. It’s quite refreshing. 8/10
Wheat Gluten (Hua Gan)
This is fried wheat gluten in a light broth. Lin Dong Fang is famous for this dish. It’s a savory, but mild flavored dish. The hua gan is spongy and similar to tofu. It was quite good. 8.25/10
Half Meat Half Tendon Beef Noodle Soup (Ban Jin Ban Rou Mian)
There are many different styles of beef noodle soup, but the version at Lin Dong Fang is a bit different than the majority of places which usually serve either hong shao (spicy red oily broth) or qing dun (clear light broth). The broth here is somewhere in between these two styles with a richer broth than qing dun, but not a spicy broth like hong shao. The broth has great beef and five spice flavor and isn’t oily. It’s really one of the best beef noodle broths I’ve ever had. I got half tendon half meat (ban jin ban rou). The tendon and meat were perfect. The noodles were perfectly al dente. They offer spicy beef butter and chili oil, which are nice condiments, but I only added a little as I really enjoyed the broth just as it was. This was amazing and I really can’t stress how good this bowl of beef noodle soup was. 9.25/10
Overall, this was really good and definitely one of the best beef noodle soups I’ve had. I’d highly recommend Lin Dong Fang.