La Mian literally means pull noodles, and they’re the kind you see the guys stretching into long strips and then pounding on the table. The most famous la mian in China come from Lanzhou (Gansu province) and Lanzhou la mian restaurants are found all around China. Here in Qingdao, two friends from abroad decided to create a website devoted to the great noodles of the Northwest. It’s called Qingdaolamian.com and features reviews of a bunch of la mian restaurants such as The One Called Ma Jia Under the Wang Ba, as well as history, recipes, maps, and more info on a wonderful way to get full for about 5 yuan.
“This website grew out of a meeting of two foreigners in the beautiful Chinese coastal city of Qingdao, who discovered a shared passion for those special noodles known throughout China as “Lanzhou la mian”. Rudi and Dave would adjourn each Monday evening at various la mian restaurants in the city for their weekly fix and ponder over a possible outlet for their passion short of a pilgrimage to the la mian mecca of Lanzhou itself….and hence this website was born.
La Mian (拉面) are Chinese “pulled noodles” – la (拉) meaning to pull or stretch, while mian (面) are wheat noodles. The Lanzhou variety is distinguished by its special beef or lamb broth which is then laced with slices of beef (or lamb) and usually garnished with green coriander and/or white radish. Learn about its History and check the Recipe section to see how la mian is made.
Now you might be thinking…isn’t Qingdao a long way away from Lanzhou? Yes, about 2246km to be precise. But as testament that la mian is renowned right across China from its far north-west Muslim areas to the Yellow Sea in the east, Qingdao – as do most cities and towns in China – has hundreds of these little restaurants.
So we have gone ahead and done the obvious thing – create a website with reviews of various la mian eating options in Qingdao – mostly around the Shi Nan district (市南区), as this is where both we and the majority of foreigners spend their time, however we have also some from the Shi Bei district (市北区) too. Check the Map to find the nearest la mian restaurant to you then click on it to see the review.
The quality of the la mian on offer is the most important factor affecting our ratings, however we also take into account the general atmosphere of the restaurants, and the friendliness of the families who run them. To be sure, there are a lot more dishes on offer than just 拉面- check the Menu section for a snapshot. Below each review there is a comment section for you to make your own assessment of your eating experience.
If you like 拉面 and you live in Qingdao or are visiting, we are sure this site will be of use to you!
We invite your suggestions and comments. Please don’t hesitate to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.”
Qingdao La Mian
Photo Credit @ Austin Kramer