Seattle Wonton Battle: Canton Wonton House VS Mike’s Noodle House
On my last trip to Seattle, I headed down to the International District to seek a bowl of noodles. Actually, I ended up on a mini crawl and checked out Canton Wonton House and Mike’s Noodle House for their beef brisket and wonton noodle soup. For a brief moment, I considered getting the wonton and sui kau (dumplings) noodle soup since sui kau were apparently really popular at Canton Wonton House.
My small bowl arrived quickly and at first I was confused how dark the broth was. But it was actually good. I didn’t detect any star anise but I appreciated the care in laying out the greens, beef and wontons. The noodles had a nice chew.
Canton has a peeling sign out front but the clean restaurant has no-nonsense tables filled with families and elderly Chinese grandmothers. It felt like a quick and quiet lunch spot, the sort of place I could drop in at any time by myself.
Canton Wonton House608 S Weller St., Seattle, WA 98104 — (206) 682-5080
After leaving Canton, I headed up the street and around the corner to Mike’s Noodle House. I half-expected the same austere noodle shop but instead was greeted by a platoon of speedy wait staff. Mike’s had much nicer decor and the tables are stocked with an array of condiments.
I ordered the beef brisket and wonton noodles just to make the proper comparison. I was almost swayed by the more extensive menu. The small bowl is noticeably smaller than Canton’s. There were 3 wontons versus the 4 from Canton though admittedly Mike’s wontons are plumper. It’s also about $.60 cents more at Mike’s. Not much of a difference in price but the quality was not great.
First one of my wontons seemed a bit uncooked. The wrapper of the wonton wasn’t thoroughly cooked which makes me sad since I think that means the wontons were stuck in either a very cold walk-in or in the freezer. And this was the wonton that was sitting in my soup the longest, hidden under a pile of noodles. Next the beef was very tough and practically inedible. And lastly, there were no greens. The broth was okay but not my favorite.
Overall, my Seattle wonton experience doesn’t compare to my LA wontons. But I know I’ll find myself craving a bowl of noodles the next time I’m in Seattle and Canton Wonton House will be just fine.
Mike’s Noodle House418 Maynard Ave S., Seattle, WA 98104 — (206) 389-7099
© The Minty 2013