Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Kojin Noodles

My colleague Fred has been working his way through the menu and every evening at work his praise rises higher for the new noodle shop on Southard just by Duval Street.

It looks cute enough from the outside but when I figured out the nice to go hatch it occurred to me that lunch wasn't going to be air conditioned on this 90 degree afternoon.

And the cooking goes on in front of you which would be a nice touch in artificially cool air. I took a seat at the counter which did not get me immediate and rapid service but I had the newspaper to keep me company even if the server had better things to do. The cook smiled though as he put together a roast pork sandwich on naan.

It was the eleven dollar special so I ordered one as it came with miso soup. The place offers half a dozen pho type dishes, Asian noodles vegetables and meat and only one vegetarian offering, a rather boring looking miso with tofu. My first Asian restaurant not catering to vegetarians.

Small bowls for ten bucks, giant bowls for 18 so I figured a soup and sandwich would give me a quick look across the menu board. The naan was soft flavorless and not the least crispy. It was the reason I wanted the sandwich, as I love naan, who doesn't, and I miss Indian food. The miso was full of mushrooms and dark with flavor. The sandwich had a weird sauce that tasted of mashed liver which gave me pause. Luckily I had a teapot with hot tea to wash it down. Unluckily the server was quite surprised by my request for hot tea but I am one of those weird people who like hot tea on a hot day to cool my skin by sweating slightly. I had some mystery tea bag from an old tin hidden behind the counter and left it at that.

Here is the cheerful cook filling eighty dollars-worth of pho bowls.

Maybe I should have had a nine dollar beer to wash it down. As it was I spent $14 and left a three dollar tip. Oh and when it came time to settle the bill, also requiring an age to wait, I was told with no prior warning the credit card machine was down. Luckily and unusually for me I had a twenty dollar bill, else I'd have had to add an ATM fee from the Bank of American Crooks machine up the street.

I could have spent nine bucks on an El Gaucho Ernesto burrito from badboy up Simonton Street and sat in air conditioning.
- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad


David B. said...

Whoa. Hope management is listening.

Rob said...

$18 for pho? Kripes, that's expensive!

Anonymous said...

90 degrees? It's freezing here. 46 degrees at noon with snow in the weekend forecast! Most Memorial Days have been cold and snowy here. I miss KW!

Bob from Livingston Montana

RichardM said...

Pretty pricey noodles, and apparently, not very tasty. Sorry to hear that there aren't any Indian food places in KW. The only one we had turned into a pizza place since there wasn't enough business in Indian food. The nice part is, the cook is the same and they have an under-the-counter Indian menu that they are willing to serve if they aren't too busy.

Danette said...

Pity that your asian restaurant was so tepid. I love Pho and could eat it regularly but the Vietnamese restaurants are some distance from my house and I am the only one who eats the delicacy. Interesting too that you have so many vegetarian Asian restaurants-- it's only become vogue recently for Asian food to be veg here. And the really authentic place serve lots of meat (except for Indian restaurants of course).

Conchscooter said...

A noodle place was much anticipated so it annoys me that I never get a duff burrito from bad boy on Simonton yet pho is hard to come by. Modern youthful cuisine has a ways to go before it makes it in Key West. I am getting less tolerant of wasting money on poor performance in a restaurant.
The cafe, square grouper, and cafe sole are worth the money.

Singing to Jeffrey's Tune said...

I sure your attitude on wasting money (and my limited allowed caloric intake) on poor performing restaurants. Thankfully there is a decent Indian restaurant in Fort Myers.

Singing to Jeffrey's Tune said...

*I share* - damn auto-IN-correct

caddis said...

I'd give the place another chance. The owner used to have a noodle place in Boulder, CO and it was wildly successful. He didn't dig the coldish winters so he got back to KW. Think he also ran that steak and seafood place on Simonton -- Duffy's maybe??