Very Fresh Noodles: Chelsea Market’s New Taste of Taiwan

Though many would consider Chelsea Market to be a well-explored attraction, one of the newest additions has been a buzz. With a dazzlingly long line on soft opening, is it worth the 20 minute wait?

I happened to be walking down 9th Avenue near Chelsea and noticed a small collection of people eating a beef noodle dish – then I looked up at the window looking into a standing table area in Chelsea Market and saw almost every person eating the same meal. I decided to head in and take a look.

VFN has a simple menu but they do one thing well – soup. I ordered the La Mei beef noodle soup, and was handed a receipt with a number where I waited for my dish to be prepared.

It was kind of fascinating watching the dishes being made – they were able to turn around a lot of dishes very quickly, but every ingredient was made fresh. Think of it like an assembly line: there was one man making noodles over and over. (Though, I presume, this only is a viable model because of the high-density urban population).‌

‌The soup was fantastic! A slight bite to the palette gave both the noodles and the beef a great flavor (though, be warned if you can't take spicy: I ordered the mild and it had a little bit of spice). The size of the bowl is large – maybe a little too large for lunch. The meat was a fantastic cut and was cooked perfectly – soft enough to fit well in a soup but not too much. The flat noodles absorbed the sauce and spices very well – and honestly, even if there was nothing else in the bowl except broth and noodles, I would still buy it.

In conclusion, though Very Fresh Noodles may be a bit large of a portion size, it is a fantastic mix of soup and Taiwanese homemade noodles that I have yet to find anywhere else.

📅 3 March 2019 • 📷 Pixel 2 XL / Osmo Pocket