I've heard about this place for months and finally got the chance to check Hanoi Chicken Noodle out in San Leandro. Located in a plaza, there is plenty of parking so you don’t need to fight to find parking or locate it on the street. They currently have indoor dining but I didn't see any outdoor dining. You can also call ahead to place your order so you can pick it up instead of dining in. Upon visiting the restaurant, I was surprised to see how modern this place is; unlike your standard Vietnamese restaurant since I thought it was a mom-and-pop shop!
Once you walk in, you are immediately greeted at the register where you place an order on the spot before you are seated. I was given a number after ordering and grabbed a table. If you want tea or water, it is self-served in the area against the wall. The cashier recommended #1, #4, #5, and #8 as their popular items. As for the chicken wings, he suggested the salt and pepper option. I ordered #1: Hanoi's Special Chicken Noodle Soup which comes with shredded chicken, prawns, fishcake, meatballs, fish ball, and the chicken wings since he made it sound delicious. The food came rather quickly and within 5 minutes of waiting, my friend and I received our noodles. They came in a big metal bowl packed with ingredients and soup. I love how the broth was light but flavorful enough that I didn't need to add any oyster sauce. My friend and I tend to eat a lot and we even had a hard time finishing this delicious bowl of noodles since it is packed with different types of protein and noodles. The salt and pepper chicken wings came about 5 minutes after. It tasted like how you expected wings to be, although I felt it was saltier than usual.
If you've been to Vien Hoang in Oakland Chinatown, their #1 taste similar to their infamous #21! However, this place gives you a lot more in terms of meat and noodles. I haven't tried Hanoi Chicken Noodle's version of the Chiu Chow Ho Fun but will try that next time when I am in the area! With the amount of food you get per bowl, this is a great deal for the price and it is pretty affordable as well. Highly recommend it if you are looking for a delicious bowl of noodles!