photo credit: Aleksandra Boruch

Bao Noodle Shop image

Bao Noodle Shop



$$$$Perfect For:Casual Weeknight DinnerCatching Up With MatesDining SoloLunch
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Bao Noodle Shop is in Shoreditch, in the belly of the beast on the corner of Redchurch Street. Familiar or not with the other restaurants in the mini Bao empire, you’ll more than likely settle into this sleek Taiwanese noodle spot quickly. The room—all white tiles and pine wood angles—is busy with diners on stools high and low hunched over bowls. It marries Bao’s minimalist aesthetic with a frenetic kind of energy—a trademark of their restaurants. That said, everyone knows what’s going on. From diners crossing off orders on their menus, to legions of t-shirt-clad staff ferrying bowls of this and baos of that. It’s functional while feeling a little cool, and the food fits that to a tee.

Bao Noodle Shop image

Of the small plates, a standout is the crispy tripe, seasoned with a dancing 16-spice mix and made for dipping in spring onion mayo. It hits all the savoury spots and goes at a few more while it’s at it. The noodle soups are best enjoyed on one of the high counters for maximum head-bowing slurpability. Though they aren’t the most flavourful broths in town, both of the beef options are thoroughly heartwarming bowls when the optional addition of beef butter is swirl in. You can also get their namesake bao and fried chicken, making this place as good for sharing as it is for the solo diner.

But you might have already known that. Bao’s restaurants always tend to add up to one predictable thing: a restaurant that’s one of the most surefire decisions you can make whatever the area is. 

Food Rundown

Bao Noodle Shop image

photo credit: Aleksandra Boruch

Rare Beef Rump Noodle

There’s something quite exciting about bowls of food that come with other smaller bowls of food to interact with. We’re not talking about a chopping board burger and a mini basket of chips. We’re talking pink rump beef slices bobbing in broth—ready to be dunked in a bright orange soy yolk on the side, or a little dish of savoury beef butter to swirl in. Without said accoutrements this bowl might be a little bland, but with them it’s good.
Bao Noodle Shop image

photo credit: Aleksandra Boruch

Slow-Cooked Beef Cheek & Shortrib Noodle

A little denser in flavour and salt than its rare beef counterpart, the Taipei-style noodles fit the bill for a brisk day. The short rib is thickly cut and the perfect vehicle for a glowing egg yolk on the side. Broth-wise, sensory memories of cups of Bovril at the football came to us while slurping, though none of those involved the welcome cut-through of coriander and pickled greens.
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Crispy Tripe, Spring Onion Dip

Like jellied eels and Werther’s Originals, there’s something thoroughly mail-order-velcro-trouser-wearing, grandparent-feeling about tripe. It doesn’t have a bad rep. It just has a kind of WWII rep. This stuff shouldn’t do though. It’s full of fizz and flavour, spicy and zingy, and not unlike a more interesting pork scratching.
Bao Noodle Shop image

Lu Rou Fan

A lovely little lunch or dinner at £8, this braised pork rice is generous with chunks of belly and meltingly good fat alongside pork floss, a crispy fried egg, and pickles. It’s a perfect small bowl.
Bao Noodle Shop image

Fried Ogleshield Cheese Rolls

Once upon a time these deep-fried cheesy spring rolls would be subject to a vaguely sexual oozing ‘cheese pull’ video that had the Buzzfeed Tasty stamp of approval. Everyone’s a bit over that now because, ultimately, something that tastes this good shouldn’t be left to go cold on camera.

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Suggested Reading

The 18 Best Restaurants In Shoreditch image

The 18 Best Restaurants In Shoreditch

From an iconic British restaurant to homely Vietnamese, open-fire cooking, and more.

Bao image

The bao are what makes this Taiwanese joint legendary, but the small plates are even better. The queues at Bao are an official Soho landmark.


We don’t know what the question is, but noodles and broth is almost definitely the answer.

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