39-07 Prince St (between 39th Ave and Roosevelt Ave, Flushing)
Fatty Kat Eats: You Tiao (Chinese doughnut), Scallion Pancakes, Beef Noodle Soup
If you've followed me for a while, you know soup noodles are everything to me! Life isn't worth living unless a bowl of steaming soup noodles are there by my side. I can't go more than a few days without some form of it. Soup + noodles + heaven + crack = addiction. It doesn't matter if it's soba, udon, pho, minestrone, chicken noodle soup, beef noodle soup, laksa, or whatever, just GET IN MAH BELLY. King 5 Noodle House has long been one of my family's favorite restaurants in Flushing, Queens. I'm not exactly sure where the name came from, because the Chinese name literally means "beef noodle soup." This Taiwanese/Chinese restaurant is low key and casual, so there's no need to get dolled up. You won't spend more than $15/person for an elaborate feast.
If you go for breakfast or lunch (yes, soup noodles are totally acceptable for breakfast), you must get the Sweetened Soy Milk (iced or hot). This is a standard daytime beverage for us Chinese folk, and this one is particularly good. Not very sweet with a very pure soy flavor. Guzzle it down with the doughnut below!
While this "You Tiao" or Chinese doughnut doesn't look like your average NYPD version, it's still a piece of fried dough. These doughnuts are light, flaky and tend to border on savory. There is a sweet version that only exists at Big Wong in Chinatown, but the two are very different. King 5 has a very good you tiao. Hot and cwispy (my attempt at a Chinese accent).
When I lived in Shanghai (high school), my parents would get us Scallion Pancakes every week from this guy who sold his golden discs in a rundown storefront down an alley. All the pancakes would be gone before noon, but my fatty parents would always score a boatload. Like me, you'll probably get the scallion pancakes simply for the comfort of it all. King 5's are really good--not overly fried or salty, with a perfectly crisp skin and doughy center.
Unless you're with a group, you probably won't get anything but the beef noodle soup. But please, for me, order the Sautéed Morning Glory with garlic. This is absolutely my favorite vegetable. King 5 cooked it well and not just for a noodle shop. Truthfully, any decent Chinese restaurant should be able to serve you a delicious plate of morning glory, either sautéed in garlic or fermented tofu sauce, as long as the produce is good.
The Beef Noodle Soup is always the grand finale. The thick and chewy noodles are undoubtedly homemade and cooked to the equivalent of Italian al dente. The beef broth is phenomenally seasoned to achieve a wonderful umami flavor with a hint of aniseed. This has GET IN MAH BELLY written all over it.
No one could ever say anything bad about this bowl of heaven. Not even my hard-to-please grandpa. The cranky service and B-rating might be another issue. But...priorities, people, priorities! Food is king.