218 Padstow Road, Eight Mile Plains
Although I enjoy cuisine from all walks of the world, homestyle mainland Chinese cuisine is my soul food. It's the kind of simple but tasty dishes that fueled my childhood and makes my heart sing to this day. Most of the Chinese style restaurants in Brisbane are Taiwanese or Cantonese so when I hear of restaurants with more of a mainland influence, my interest goes right up.
I first read about 218 Chinese Style Restaurant from another Brisbane foodie on Instagram and convinced my parents to come with me for lunch last weekend. None of us had been there before but it turns out that the restaurant is in a shopping plaza we drive past all the time to get to Sunnybank. There's a load of parking there and the address was (no coincidence) 218 Padstow Road. The Chinese name for the restaurant is more descriptive and it calls itself a noodle shop so I figure the signature dishes are the noodles.
218 Chinese Style Restaurant is a small eatery and it was fairly quiet when we got there, which is not the best sign for a Saturday lunch. Maybe they do better at night. The menu contains some yummy-sounding Chinese snacks as well as a good selection of noodles. My parents and I ordered a noodle dish each and some spring onion pancakes to share.
The food didn't take very long to come out and in typical Chinese style, everyone's noodles arrived at different times. That was fine for us because we asked for some smaller bowls to share the food out anyway.
Braised beef noodle soup
The first dish I sampled was the braised beef noodle soup. The noodles had a good consistency, my dad commented that it was almost ramen-like in thickness and elasticity. The beef had a good flavour and was quite tender too. This is great comfort food and it's the kind of thing you can eat every day without getting sick of it.
Wonton noodle soup
Dad's pick was the wonton noodle soup. This was perhaps the least interesting of the lot. The noodles were the same as in mum's dish but without the beef to add flavour, it was just swimming in a very plain salty broth. The wontons themselves were quite nice and had a homemade quality to them. We ate all the wontons and left most of the noodles behind.
Stewed beef honeycomb and pig intestine with beef shin noodle soup
My choice from the menu was the 'three colour' noodle soup with braised beef, tripe and intestines. This might not sound like an appealing dish to many but I'm a fan of offal treated well. In this dish, the tripe and intestines were 'there' but nothing special and I don't like eating offal just for the sake of it. I did like that the noodles were a thicker cut. With noodles and pasta, I prefer thick and rustic.
Spring onion pancakes
The spring onion pancake was my favourite item of the meal. It's a frequently occurring snack dish on Chinese menus and you can even buy them at grocery stores to cook at home. This one was done particularly well with a crunchy and flaky exterior but it also didn't taste too oily.
I don't have a particularly strong impression of 218 Chinese Style Restaurant. The food was adequate but nothing to urgently plan a revisit for. The service was quite speedy and friendly though. I liked the spring onion pancake best.