Gene Wu calls the food of Shaanxi province “very simple, not fancy at all. It’s all based on freshness.” Of course, nothing requires consummate skill and an unwavering work ethic quite like simple dishes dependent on fresh ingredients. And Wu’s actions speak louder than his words as he shuttles between the pair of modest shops he, his wife, and his cousin run in Boston’s Downtown Crossing and the northern suburbs to make the buns for textbook, sloppy joe-like rou jia mo; the dough for the wide, springy, clingy noodles they’ll pull to order the way the third-generation restaurateur’s family did back home; and, well, not much else. Unlike the vast majority of its peers, Gene’s Chinese Flatbread Café serves just a few dishes. Perhaps the best-loved are the noodles with lamb (in soup or not), redolent of garlic, cumin and herbs, but the spicy chilled versions with wheat gluten or tea eggs enjoy near-equal acclaim. (Granted, there will always be a place in our hearts for Cantonese seafood institution Peach Farm, just a few blocks away.)
Join us as we celebrate the Grand Opening of our brand new restaurant in 466 Main Street, Woburn, MA.
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year from Gene's Chinese Flatbread Cafe, We are open New Year eve, and New Year day.
By David B. Chelmsford, MA 8/18/2012
It is wonderful to see the evolution of food culture in the United States. Those that have come to live here from other corners of the world bring their cuisine with them, providing an important link to the their place of origin and culture. Those of us that crave something different, and enjoy exploring the live's of others through their food, revel in what our new citizens bring to us. Gene's is one of those places.
His small, hole-in-the-wall cafe brings the world of hand pulled noodles and the food of his home, Xian, China, to Chelmsford. The noodles are chewy, rustic, and filling, taking on the flavor of the broth they are placed. The broth has some heat that creeps up on you through the meal. The counter staff will ask if you'd like to adjust the heat, good for those that can't take hot chiles.
The menu is small and focused and the prices are low. Servings are big enough to bring some home or back to work for the next day's lunch. The pork on the Xian flat bread is succulent and delicious.
Forget Chinese food adapted to American plates...go to Gene's for the "real" thing.