The menu recommended the Tan Tan — so we ordered the Tan Tan
By Steven Sandor | October 3, 2022
Hu’s Noodle Nook opened a couple of months ago in the renamed Unity Square, next door to the MacEwan campus. And, searching for some lunch ramen, I decided it was about time I gave this spot a try.
There were a few specials posted on the chalkboard, but, at the top of the ramen menu was the Tan Tan. A local favourite and a top seller! It didn’t take much more than that to sell me. Was it a marketing trick or honest representation of customer feedback? Does it matter?
The Tan Tan is a pork broth, with wonderful little bits of green onion and ground pork. Ground peanuts are front and centre, offering a roasted nuttiness that kicks off each bite. The heat comes from the pepper bits that swim in the broth, and a spicy sesame oil. The rich, brown, creamy broth is spotted in bright red. But the spice isn’t overpowering; the pork comes through nicely. This is a dish with a nice balance, but with bold flavours that punch you in the mouth. Don’t confuse “balance” with “subtle.” They don’t mean the same thing. You can go into a YouTube archive and watch Motörhead play live, and think, “wow, that’s a nice balance between guitar, bass and Lemmy’s voice” but it doesn’t mean you’re being lulled to sleep with subtlety.
Really, this is right up there with some of the best ramen offerings I’ve had in this city.