Confession: Growing up, I never really liked Chinese food. I’m not sure if it’s because I considered the options on the west side lackluster or because I just didn’t like the flavors, but Chinese was never a go-to meal.
So when my girlfriend, who was pretty much raised on Chinese food, said I needed to try this little noodle shop in Chinatown, I was skeptical. But like all good boyfriends, I obliged and went to check it out.
Lam’s Kitchen is a clean, bright shop at the corner of Maunakea and Pauahi streets. The first thing I noticed was the lack of English being spoken among customers, an auspicious sign. With 30 or so seats, Lam’s is slightly bigger than a hole-in-the-wall. A longtime family-owned Chinatown favorite, it’s packed at lunchtime and there is usually a short wait for a table. Large bowls of steaming soup leave the kitchen at a frantic pace.
The signature beef brisket and tendon noodle soup ($7.50) is at nearly every table. Tender chunks of slow-simmered brisket and collagen-laden tendon are ladled on top of house-made look fun to create the foundation of my go-to bowl. To make it heartier and even better, I add in their superb won tons.
Be sure to order a side of look fun noodles. They’re made fresh daily and served with a sweet soy sauce and sesame seeds, so you can dress them up however you want.
I’ve been here so many times, they know my order by heart and start preparing my bowl of wonton, beef brisket and tendon look fun soup ($9.75) as soon as I sit down.
My other favorite dishes include the simple and flavorful beef chow fun ($7.99), beef string bean on rice ($7.75) and won ton soup ($7.25) with skinny mein noodles.
1152 Maunakea St.