Crazy Noodle Bar, Newmarket, Auckland

From the outside, this oddly named noodle bar doesn’t appear to hide any lunacy. The décor is utilitarian, the staff is attentive, the chinese tea is free and the menu is extensive, with your typical wantonly labeled mystery dishes, (i.e., beef and vegetables on rice, milk toast, etc). All pretty normal for a cheap eats noodle bar in Auckland so far…

We started with a serving of deep-fried squid ($6.50), which came with plum sauce. This was done very well, crispy, without any hint of oiliness. It was a bit bland though; you will have to add your own salt and pepper.

The buttered and milk toast ($2.50) is exactly what it says, – toast with butter and sweetened condensed milk. I loved this as a child, and this is comfort food with all the associated warm fuzzy feelings.

There are some great deals, – the Congee (rice porridge) combo, which comes with your choice of congee (the pork and preserved egg congee is delicious), vegetarian noodles and tea or coffee, all for $12.50. The vegetarian noodles is a simple and very tasty stir-fry with julienned carrots, onions and beansprout.

The vegetables and beef on rice ($10.50) is a generous and satisfying serving of choy sum and soy-flavoured beef pieces.

Now for the craziness, – combination meat (a choice of pork or chicken) on rice ($18). This consists of simple egg fried rice, topped with meat cooked in two sauces, – cheese and tomato. Yes, meat in cheesy sauce on fried rice, you read that correctly. Even crazier, it works and it actually very tasty.

Crazy Noodle Bar is located behind the Rialto in Newmarket at 4 Kent St (open everyday from 11am – 10:30pm), and is great for fast, cheap Chinese dishes, some with an odd twist, but all good and satisfying.

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