Saskatoon·Video

Robot chef preps noodles at Saskatoon restaurant

Number 1 Noodle House — a Saskatoon restaurant that already makes a bold statement with its name — stands out for having a robot on duty.

Machine tackles hard-to-master noodle-cutting technique

This noodle robot in Saskatoon has the stamina and the accuracy needed to slice up Chinese knife-cut noodles. (CBC)

Number 1 Noodle House — a Saskatoon restaurant that already makes a bold statement with its name — stands out for having a robot on duty.

Speaking for Noodle House owner and chef Hank Ren, manager Cindy Tsang said "he ordered this robot because he wanted to make the knife-cut noodle."

This style of noodle is popular in Ren's home, the Shanxi province in China. Tsang said he wanted to bring the noodle to Saskatoon "because they've never tried the knife-cut noodle before."

Don't dismiss the idea of "noodle robot" as some hyped-up way of describing automation. This robot looks like an ambitious, friendly chef. She comes with an accurate, tireless, noodle-cutting hand.  

"The texture is better than the real one," said Tsang when comparing robot-made noodles to those done by humans.

Restaurant manager Cindy Tsang and chef/owner Hank Ren say their robot can cut better noodles than most humans. (CBC)

Robot to the rescue 

Still, one might wonder why the restaurant chose to bring a robot in to do the noodle cutting work.

"It's not easy to learn. You need to learn from a very, very basic foundation," said Tsang.

"In China they will use … the real person to make the knife-cut noodle. But here he [Ren] tried to hire somebody to make the knife-cut noodle and no one knew this technique."

Number 1 Noodle House also features hand-pulled noodles that have a rougher, almost torn texture — but the human chef takes cares of those orders.

A Chinese restaurant in Saskatoon is taking noodle-making to a new level due to a unique chef in the kitchen. The Number 1 Noodle House is using a noodle-making robot because it was difficult to find chefs to cut fresh noodles. 0:47

With files from Victoria Dinh