Almost every Asian culture has at the heart of its cuisine a noodle soup.
We are blessed with a good handful of Vietnamese restaurants on the Coast, and I have to say I’ve never had a bowl of pho I did not love.
So when word got out about a new place in D’Iberville that specializes in Asian-style noodle soups, I just had to go.
The Noodle House is north of the D’Iberville Wal-Mart, and a bit east, so it is not hard to find.
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There is plenty of parking, and the place is open seven days a week.
The menu is simple and to the point — mostly soups, with just four rice dishes. My friend Ralph Hyer and I made a lunch date out of it, and we had been there just a few minutes when it became obvious service was going to be sharp and snappy.
The soups are in two broad categories — an Asian-style noodle soup with Ramen noodles, vermicelli, udon and clear rice noodles (prices vary from $10.50 to $12) and a five-strong list of more traditional Vietnamese pho-style soups. The pho is made with beef broth and varies primarily in the protien content, including brisket, round, meatballs, fish balls, tripe, pork and a few vegetables.
We started with one of the only two appetizers, chicken wings ($7.50).
My friend tried the Mi Cay, a spicy soup made with Vietnamese-style Ramen noodles, broccoli, mushrooms, shrimp, fish balls and kimchi, which added a bit more spice. This hearty soup was just $10.50 and is large enough that it will be hard for most to finish. It is highly recommended.
I went for the more-traditional pho, Pho Dac Biet ($12). It was loaded with rice noodles, beef meatballs, thin-sliced brisket and round steak in a fragrant, delicious beef broth.
I can think of no other dish that is as delicious, comforting and hearty. It comes with a side of bean sprouts, Thai basil, lime and hot peppers, combined with a splash of sriracha, perhaps a few drops of fish sauce and you are on your way to customizing your pho into something very special indeed.
Just one word of caution: Pho is habit forming. After you figure out how to use the chopsticks in one hand, and the Asian-style spoon in the other, it will become a lifelong addiction.
The Noodle House is a great place for an introduction to Asian-style noodle soups or, if you already have the habit, a chance to explore yet another specialty restaurant that’s getting it right.
The Noodle House
3516 Sangani Boulevard, D’Iberville
11 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily