Heavy Noodling: Family Style Chinese Noodle Lunch at Dai Ho in Temple City

Please Make Note of Pleasure Palate Attendance Policies and our 3 Strikes Rule by clicking here before RSVP-ing to this Event. Cancelling your RSVP within 24 hours or not showing up at the event without contacting the Organizer ahead of time will result in a strike. 3 Strikes and You're Out!

EVENT MUST KNOWS:

• We will meet in front of the restaurant at 11:15am and will line up and wait until they open at 11:30am.

• Family-Style Dining: Dining for this event has been designated as Family-Style. The food bill will be split evenly between all attendees. Attendees will be responsible for paying for their own beverages. Please note that flexibility is an important part of family-style dining, and if you want to take a chance on attending, you have to be amenable to what the group/AO will order. You don't have to eat everything that is ordered, but everyone pays equally, whether you eat everything or not. Why this policy? The goal for family-style dining is to allow for the entire group to sample as wide a variety of dishes as possible. If one or more attendees choose to order on their own, that limits the group's choices, which defeats the purpose of what Family-Style Dining is all about. In addition, most of the dishes we order will be moderately to very spicy. If this definition of Family-Style Dining doesn't feel comfortable, this may not be the right type of event for you.

• We will order about 4 to 5 different dishes to share (with at least 2 of the dishes being noodle dishes).

• Cost per person is expected to be about $15-$20,depending on how much food you order, plus any beverages, tax and gratuity.  Please bring at least $30 in CASH (small bills preferred) to settle your portion of the bill. THIS IS A CASH ONLY ESTABLISHMENT!

• Dai Ho has earned an average rating of 4.0 Stars out of 5.0 from over 180 Yelp Reviewers: http://www.yelp.com/biz/dai-ho-restaurant-temple-city

• Parking is available in parking lot of the mini-mall where they are located. Street parking is available.  Be sure to read the street signs for any parking restrictions.

• Afterward, we can head over someplace nearby for dessert!

Co-Organizer Sunny alluded me to an article by Clarissa Wei about this little Mom & Pop restaurant where they produce some excellent noodle dishes that are only available for sale for about 4 hours a day.

Here's an excerpt:

"Located in Temple City on Las Tunas Drive, Dai Ho (大和, da he) Restaurant has been open for 28 years (with a previous location in Alhambra). The two Chinese characters in the restaurant name translates to "big" and "gather," respectively.

"We wanted this restaurant to be a big gathering of people," owner May Ku explained. Dai Ho is only opened 3.5 hours each day, Tuesday through Sunday, but has had enough patrons to sustain itself for nearly three decades. It's a small window of time for customers to drop in, but May and her husband Jim are at the restaurant as early as 6 a.m. for prep work.

Around town, Jim is infamously known as the "Noodle Nazi" -- a nickname earned from his snappy retorts and demands that patrons enjoy his noodles his way. May has some of the same mannerisms, but they're tempered with an extremely sweet and almost maternal way.

"Eat it immediately," she advised the moment the plate touches the table. We hover a bit to take photographs of the food but within minutes, May takes it upon herself to serve us the noodles -- mixing in the ground pork and sprinkled scallions, swirling it a bit and portioning it all into four small bowls.

May has a good reason for the rush. The noodles are best when eaten immediately or else they soak up the sauces and lose their "Q" (the Chinese equivalent of al dente) texture. Though people can often be taken aback by her hands-on approach, it's really just Chinese hospitality.

Everything at Dai Ho -- from the food to the restaurant itself -- is meticulously thought out. The floors and tables are scrubbed clean. Nothing is ever too oily. May had no hesitation letting me behind the kitchen (something many Chinese restaurant owners have qualms about); there was a massive bowl of paocai 泡菜 (the Chinese equivalent of kimchi) sitting over a strainer back there. "We're doing this to get rid of the excess oil," she said.

The beef shanks for the beef noodle soup are cooked for four hours and then marinated overnight before they make it onto a customer's table. The noodle dough is kneaded five times to obtain the perfect texture, boiled, and then fan-dried to cool. The strands are the ideal texture: chewy but not too gummy, firm but not at all slippery.

The noodles are made to order and leave a clean taste in your mouth -- even when drenched in a heavy peanut-based sauce."

You can read the complete article here, which also offers a detailed look at some of the dishes available on their limited menuhttp://www.kcet.org/living/food/the-nosh/have-you-eaten/small-batch-chinese-noodles-in-la-available-only-35-hours-a-day.html

 

Join or login to comment.

  • Nick N

    Have to do some preparation for an upcoming vacation.

    August 17, 2013

  • Yumi R.

    Guess who's coming with me?!! Hint: she barely comes up to my hips.

    1 · August 16, 2013

  • Carol R.

    Have been dying to try this place.

    August 16, 2013

  • Anna

    just watch out for the 'noodle nazi'....he's gonna ask 'what do u want to order' the moment u sit down.....lol

    August 8, 2013

  • Yumi R.

    Wow! This is going to be a fun group!

    August 2, 2013

  • Beth K.

    Sorry I have to bow out...forgot I had something that day.

    July 31, 2013

  • Sally

    Great event name, Sklar! After reading the writeup everybody better leave their cameras at home.

    1 · July 31, 2013

  • Kiyo

    Yeah, Sally and Sklar! xoxo

    July 31, 2013

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