Hop Won Chinese Noodle Shop
139 East 45th Street
New York, NY 10017
Telephone: (212) 661-4280/867-4996
Fax: (212) 867-0208
Open: Sunday Closed/Monday-Friday 10:00am-8:45pm/Saturday 11:00am-7:30pm
My review on TripAdvisor:
On my travels to the Turtle Bay neighborhood, I came across a little gem of a restaurant tucked into the office buildings that line the border of Turtle Bay and Midtown East. Hop Won Chinese Noodle Shop is located in a series of small mom and pop restaurants in what is left of the brownstone section of the neighborhood. The rest of the street had been leveled for new office towers and this small strip of restaurants is what remains.
Hop Won appears small from the outside but the restaurant is rather large in the back with lots of nice seating to enjoy your meal. The front section of the restaurant is where you do your ordering and during the lunch rush most entrees are prepared ahead of time and ready to the on slot of office workers dash in and out. If you have the time, try to eat in the back of the restaurant and sit in one of the cushioned chairs. On a hot day, the air conditioning works so nicely and the restaurant is such a pleasure to dine in.
The food is terrific. I had lunch here a couple of times and the restaurant is less Cantonese ‘take-out’ food and concentrates more on barbecued meats, noodle soups and dishes accompanied with rice. It is more of a Chinatown restaurant in the middle of Midtown. The smells of the roasted meats makes them mouthwatering and you really want to concentrate on them when you first visit the restaurant.
The roasted meats at Hop Won are delicious
My first trip to the restaurant, I had the Boneless Roast Pork Combination platter with Vegetarian Fried Rice and an egg roll ($10.75) with a Coke. The roast pork was delicious with a smoky flavor due to the red soy marinade and a finishing of honey. Each piece was perfectly roasted and had a nice lacquered color to it. I had to admit that they were very generous with the portion size as well and it must have been about a half pound of meat on the plate. The Vegetarian Fried Rice was perfectly cooked with slivers or small pieces of vegetables studded in the dish. The egg roll was pretty standard but still good.
On my second trip to the restaurant, I concentrated on the roasted meats again and had the Roast Pork and Roast Duck combination platter with White Rice ($9.00) with a Coke and a side of Wonton Soup ($1.38). Again the roasted meats were perfect marinated and lacquered. The roast pork had a succulent red color to it and you could taste the salty soy sauce in it. The roasted duck had that lacquered crisp skin on the outside and moist sweet duck meat on the inside. It was a nice contrast in flavors with the white rice. Again the portion sizes were very fair and filling.
The Wonton Soup is rich but a bit salty. It has a deep meat flavor as you can taste the boiled and long simmering chicken in the broth. You got two Wontons in the small portion and they were very generous in size and had a nice filling of ground pork.
On my most recent trip while walking the Avenues of Midtown East, I had the Sweet & Sour Shrimp Combination lunch with a Coke ($11.00). The Shrimp was very fresh and they gave me about eight pieces of these lightly tempura battered shrimp in a pungent sauce that was not sweet. Their fried rice is very good and the egg rolls here are pretty standard. The one thing I like about their combination lunches is the generous portions at a fair price.
Sweet & Sour Shrimp
I wanted to try something different on my recent trip to the restaurant and was disappointed by the Chicken and String Beans combination platter ($11.00). It just looked off. The chicken was cooked in a black bean sauce which explained the weird color of the dish and the strange dark things in the food. The string beans were so over-cooked that they were dead. They were so mushy. The fried rice was listless. It tasted okay but this is not the quality I had had on previous trips. I know a restaurant can have an off day but this was strange.
They made up for it on a recent trip I made to the restaurant when walking Central Park South my main blog, MywalkinManhattan.com. I had the Beef and Broccoli with Fried Rice and an egg roll combination platter ($9.00). It was wonderful. On a cold day, the dish came out steaming hot and loaded with pieces of tender beef and chunks of well cooked broccoli in a combination of Soy and Hunan sauce. It had a nice pinch to it. The egg roll this time was a little better than the last few trips in. It had some pork in it.
The service here is very quick especially at lunch where they seem to have it down as a science to get customers in and out. The family still eyes you as a new customer and I can tell they are trying to figure out if you are going to be a repeat customer. Still they have been very pleasant on my trips to eat here.