For those looking to stay cool when summer’s heat reaches its peak in the coming weeks, give the air conditioner a break and order a bowl of cold noodles instead. Los Angeles restaurants are well-versed in the art of cold noodles, offering Korean naengmyeon, Vietnamese bún, Japanese udon and soba, and more. Here now are 17 highly slurpable renditions to fend off the hot days ahead.Read More
17 Highly Slurpable Cold Noodles to Keep Cool This Summer in LA
Korean naengmyeon, Japanese soba, Vietnamese bún, and more
Lao Xi Noodle House
The fantastic hun yuan cold jelly at Lao Xi Noodle is just the thing on a hot summer day. Dig into a bowlful of bouncy potato starch cuboids submerged in sesame paste, vinegar, and chile oil with a heap of julienned cucumbers. The cold jelly is unexpectedly light with an unforgettable vinegary bite.
Also featured in:
Chong Qing Special Noodles
There are two very good options for those in search of Sichuan-style cold noodles at Chong Qing Special Noodles in San Gabriel. The first is the Chongquing cold noodle which includes toothsome wheat noodles in a nutty sauce slicked with chile oil. The second is the pleasantly gelatinous “spicy and numb cold jelly” that makes for a light main or a shareable appetizer.
Golden Deli Restaurant
Vietnamese bún is always a good call on a hot day, but for those looking to try something else, the bánh hỏi — woven noodle sheets topped with proteins and served with fish sauce — is equally compelling.
Leave it to chef Chris Yang to hit it out of the ballpark with a dish as deceptively simple as sesame noodles. The version served at Yang’s Kitchen is made with Semolina spaghetti, Persian cucumbers, pickled carrots, crushed peanuts, cilantro, scallion, and a sesame sauce that’s wonderfully balanced and even better with the house-made chile crisp.
Myung Dong Kyoja
Try the jjolmyeon at Myung Dong Kyoja, which features chewy noodles, a slightly sweet gochujang sauce, julienned vegetables, and a hard boiled egg on top.
The teeth-chatteringly-cold naengmyeon noodles from Lee Ga stand out in a crowded Koreatown market for its scratch-made buckwheat strands and rich-tangy Pyongyang-style broth. Also terrific are the hard-to-find jengban naengmyeon coated in a spicy-sweet sauce with sliced vegetables, beef, and raw fish.
Also featured in:
The Corner Place
The Corner Place serves LA’s very best bowl of dongchimi gooksoo — an ice-cold noodle soup with a vinegary kimchi-based broth.
Olympic Noodle Restaurant
Olympic Noodle’s konggooksoo — thin noodles swimming in a thick, ice-cold soybean soup — always makes an appearance in the summer months. Grab a refreshing bowl before fall hits.
Also featured in:
Yu Chun Chic Naeng Myun
Of all the naengmyeon spots in Koreatown, Yu Chun most closely resembles the kind of no-frills shops found in South Korean suburbs. Chewy noodles and a highly drinkable icy broth make this a favorite among naengmyeon neophytes and homesick Koreans alike.
Marugame Udon has expanded in the past few years with four locations in and around Los Angeles. The Sanuki-style nikutama bowl comes with a scant amount of sweetened broth, shredded beef, and chubby udon noodles. Ask for it to be served cold for the ultimate antidote to a hot day.
Also featured in:
This West LA sushi spot also serves some of the best house-made soba noodles in the city. The freshly made buckwheat noodles are served cold on a tray or with a variety of toppings, like broiled duck, grated yam, and nameko mushrooms. Yabu also prepares cold udon noodles with similar toppings.
It’s a build-your-own bún situation at Mỹ Lai, a burgeoning chain of fast-casual Vietnamese restaurants from Shad Davis and Traci Phan Davis. Rice vermicelli bowls can be topped with a choice of protein including grilled chicken, beef, pork, or tofu. While a fish sauce vinaigrette is the most traditional, the tamarind vinaigrette makes for a tangy pick.
Old Time Noodle House
Old Time Noodle House, a classic Gardena Korean restaurant, serves stellar chin naengmyeon (cold arrowroot starch noodle soup). The tangy and umami-rich broth is chilled to refrigerator temperature and paired with slightly chewy arrowroot starch noodles.
Otafuku Noodle House
Otafuku crafts two different types of soba noodles: the signature milky-white seiro soba and a darker kikouchi soba made of buckwheat flour. Both are served firm in a variety of cold preparations.
Find cold sesame noodles with shredded chicken, cucumbers, pickled carrots, crispy garlic, Sichuan peppercorn oil, and cilantro on Ryla’s weekend brunch menu. Slurp up a bowl of tongue-numbing goodness and wash it all down with bottomless mimosas.
Ichimi Ann Bamboo Garden
The soba noodles at Ichimi Ann Bamboo Garden are made from scratch and beloved for its pleasingly chewy texture. Nearly every menu item can be ordered cold, including the yuzu oroshi with its citrus broth, grated radish, and fresh shiso.
Here's Looking At You
The well-composed small plates at Here’s Looking At You always have a way of adding a creative and unexpected twist to a familiar dish. The cold soba noodles, dressed in pickled shiitake vinaigrette and topped with sesame seeds, scallions, roasted mushrooms, and plenty of nori, do just that.