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Apr 10, 2008

Review: Ten Ren - Beef Stew Noodle and Eight Treasures Tea

Ten Ren is a Taiwan-based company that specializes in tea and ginseng products. It has over 100 retail locations worldwide (in seven different countries according to their website), with over 20 sites in the U.S. (in California, Illinois, Maryland, New York, and Texas). Some, but not all, of its locations are called "Ten Ren Tea Stations", while others just say "Ten Ren" and sometimes "Ten Ren Tea Time". I don't know why they do that.

To further add to the brand confusion, the company also owns Cha for Tea. The company displays a picture of former President George Bush and Barbara Bush's visit to its San Francisco location on its info page. I'm going to hazard a guess that he was either President or Vice President of the U.S. at the time because his hair was still brown at that point. Plus, the picture looks fairly old.

Some of Ten Ren's locations serve food and it was at the one in Alhambra that I recently had lunch with my cousins. We had a pot of their "Eight Treasures Tea" (a blend of Chrysanthemums, Green Tea, Jujube, Chinese Wolfberries, Dragoneye fruit, Rock Sugar, Raisin, and Tremella). I think most people get boba (tapioca balls) or flavored milk tea but I went through high school during when boba milk tea and the like were just getting popular and drank way too much of the stuff to the point where I almost never order it now.
By the way, you're not supposed to take pictures in Ten Ren, probably to protect its trade dress (the look of its stores) or trade secrets (such as its recipes), so I was told to stop after snapping a shot of my lunch, Beef Stew Noodle, which I thought looked very Taiwanese. I don't know what that means but that's what I thought. It was okay, it was more a soup than a stew... I'm thinking they meant "beef noodle soup". It was a little bit sour which I didn't care for, although I'm sure others enjoy it just fine.

Ten Ren Tea Time
2 East Main Street, Unit #2
(626) 576-1209

Operating Hours:
Sunday-Thursday: 10:30 a.m.-Midnight
Friday-Saturday: 10:30 a.m.-2 a.m


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3 comments :

  1. I believe beef noodle soup is originally a taiwanese dish. However, you're right that the Ten Ren version looks lackluster and the soup is too clear. The flat noodles are interesting though. Handmade?

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  2. Nope, not at all. Packaged noodles... very squishy. Have you had the beef noodle soup from Luscious Dumplings? It's my fav!

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  3. I haven't had the beef noodle soup fro Luscious Dumplings, although I've had their pork and preserved veg. Not bad. I haven't found really good beef noodle soup for a while, though the one at Dumpling 10053 is okay. For noodles though, I lurve MaLan noodles. They're hand pulled! There used to be one on garfield, but it closed. I think the closest one is in Hacienda or rowland heights.

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