The central courtyard off Mountain St gives the stores inside some protection from the beeps and honks of busy Broadway and makes eating in the square quiet. Well it would be except for the sound of noodles being drawn up and slurped. Most of that sound seems to be coming from Broadway Noodles. This steadily busy resto is filled with bright yellow metal chairs and good amount of room inside make it a comfortable spot for just solo dining or a gaggle of hungry, noisy students.
The noodles here are influenced by Chongqing (known in ye olden days as Chunking), one of the biggest cities in China and the centre of the southwestern area. Xiao mian is one of the specialties of the area, a version of dan dan noodles. The 'xiao' in the name doesn't just mean a small serve, it relates to a term of endearment from the locals for this favourite bowl of chilli and noodles. There's a range of noodle dishes here that made us love them, the term indeed works.
Pork mince and noodles, $8.80. When this dish is set down in front of you it looks a little deceiving. No chilli. There's help yourself sauce up on the counter so we added a good spoonful to beef it up. Unknown to us, underneath the pile of rice noodles is a mix of chilli, green shallots, Sichuan pepper, vinegar and soy sauce that just needs a good stir through to cover the lot in a power packed chilli red sauce coat. Sir mix-a-lot your way to a chilli wonder.
Bobo skewers, $1 each (minimum of 3). Although Bobo Skewers sounds like the name of a Californian trophy wife, if you are after an extra starter then a few of these skewers are a great way to get some additional tastes. Tripe on a skewer has a strange resemblance to a white seaweed monster but the blandness of it and the nubby texture helps adhere the chilli sauce in the bottom of the bowl. Tofu skins serve the same purpose, although they are not stuck through on sticks. Fish sausage packs a real fishy bite, they're sliced in half and slid on the skewers for easy biting.
There's a selection of meat skewers available for $6 and most tables seem to have a few with their meal.
Chongqing spicy noodles (mala xiao mian) $7.80. Same style of rice noodles, this time in a bowl of spiced soup. For a real difference, you can add a large scoop of cooked soft chick peas, which is a surprising but thoroughly wonderful way to add a different texture and nutty flavour to the soup.
Spicy braised beef noodles $10.80. The broth in this noodle soup is a little less chilli laden but no less tasty.
Spicy pork intestine noodle soup, $10.80. OK, so would it be a B-Kyu post without a few guts thrown in? We think not. These pork intestines are sliced and a little bit funky, just how Alison likes them. The same rice noodles are used in most of the soups we tried, we love this rice noodle style that has a good texture and bite to them.
There's a range of drinks available, plum juice (which is more like a deep prune juice, its a squat little bottle of goodness) or herbal tea for $3 or sweet soybean milk for $2. Help yourself water station on the front counter.
Broadway Noodle is at 70 Mountain St, Ultimo. Head through to the courtyard and look for the yellow sign and chairs.