P&R TasteEXPAND
P&R Taste
Jim Thurman

Eat Hangzhou-Style Noodles and Bao Under a Misleading Sign

Update 10-30: David Chan reports that P&R Taste has closed temporarily while the owner gets married and goes off on honeymoon. It will re-open at an unspecified time and place upon his return.

In a City of Industry strip mall, under signage of the previous tenant, P&R Taste serves a few items from the Chinese city of Hangzhou. Even with the abundance of Chinese regional and municipal cuisines in the San Gabriel Valley, this is something different, as Hangzhou has rarely been represented here in L.A. County.

Located south of Shanghai in southeastern China, Hangzhou is the capital city of Zhejiang Province. Considered one of “the Eight Great Regional Cuisines of China,” Zhejiang cuisine is known for its use of bamboo shoots and dishes such as dong po pork and longjing shrimp. Don’t look for either of those dishes here, because this is a simple bao and noodle house providing a taste of home to transplants and expats.

The menu, just 18 items, is dominated by noodle soups. There are 12 in all, most featuring some part of a pig: rib, chop or various bits of offal such as liver, kidney, intestine or tripe. Most notable among this portion of the menu is pian’ er chuan noodles. Described as one of “China’s 10 Famous Noodles,” they’re served in a light broth, with lean pork, preserved vegetable and bamboo shoots. This marks the first time we’ve seen these particular noodles in the area.

There also are a couple of beef options, one being tripe, as well as a vegetable soup that features bok choy, mushrooms, some diced onion, a bit of diced tomato and bamboo shoots. The handmade wheat noodles are dense and chewy, texturally reminiscent of German spaetzle. Various add-in items also are available for the soups.

Hangzhou pork mini buns, P&R TasteEXPAND
Hangzhou pork mini buns, P&R Taste
Jim Thurman

The three-item "mini buns" portion of the menu is of interest. This is the only place we know of that has Hangzhou pork mini buns. Wrapped in a denser, more breadlike wrapper than xiao long bao, they also differ filling-wise. While both use a pork meatball, the Hangzhou-style is more strongly seasoned and flavored than those in xiao long bao, including a liberal portion of diced scallions. They do share the dip in black vinegar.

Then there are house tofu mini buns, which externally look for all the world like xiao long bao but are filled with well-seasoned tofu instead of a pork meatball. The third option is to have the mini buns pan-fried, surrounded by scrambled eggs. The remainder of the menu, aside from drinks, is made up of tofu pudding, served either sweet or savory, and seaweed egg soup.

That the restaurant is marked by out-of-date signage from a closed restaurant, is only open for breakfast and lunch, and shares the space with an entirely different restaurant that serves skewers and beer late into the night, probably makes it the most SGV of all SGV restaurants.

Unfortunately, all of this comes with this caveat: The manager tells us a move to a nearby location is impending. We don’t know exactly when this change will take place, or if there will be a gap in service. Be advised to call beforehand if making any sort of a drive.

17863 Colima Road, City of Industry; (949) 566-1429.

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