Hidden in plain sight, it is not hard to find Mean Noodles once you enter the alley from New Market Street in Sheung Wan. Run by cofounders, Caroline Chou and Kevin Lim, their love of good design and their passion for delicious food inspired them to open Mean Noodles together.

As a trained architect, and professionally trained chef from Le Cordon Bleu (Boston), Lim worked closely with Chef Ming Tsai of Blue Ginger in Wellesley, MA, where he discovered his love for exotic ingredients. Blue Ginger was also one of Chou’s favorite restaurants in Boston, as she attended Wellesley College, a 10-minute walk to the restaurant.

Chou and Lim has been enthusiastic about the strong and intense flavors that can be found in Southeast Asian cuisine. Lim spent much of his time in Malaysia, and both love traveling around southeast Asia and seek out local eats, such as hawker stalls or hole in the wall places. One of their favorite is the Thai Yen Ta Fo Heng, a classic Thai noodles dish. After discovering this not so well known Thai pink noodles dish, it became one of Chou and Lim’s favorite noodles to seek out whenever they visited Thailand.

Mean: describing something as cool, awesome, interesting, nice and with all the goodness. The name Mean Noodles is a play on “having a mean bowl of noodles”, while “mean” also sounds like “noodles” in Chinese phonetically.

Interior Design

Designed by Kevin Lim and Caroline Chou; As architects and partners of openUU, an award-winning interdisciplinary design studio, they took their cue for the interior of Mean Noodles from Malaysian Batik, drawing upon the carefully crafted lines and floral patterns on the vibrant fabrics and fuse the design into every corner to make Mean Noodles a place where traditional Southeast Asian food meets contemporary style.