Noodle soup is a common street food all over China, usually sell in stalls and tiny premises open to the street through a simple window as a hole-in-the-wall. Lukstudio has reinvented the idea of Chinese eateries with Noodle Rack, the first restaurant of LongXiaoBao chain located in Changsha, by bringing together the concept of fast food and upscale diner with the aim of being spread to the rest of China.
The 50sqm of Noodle Rack are divided in two differentiated spaces, in order to have a better spatial narrative. The ordering area appears first, as a prelude, showing a bamboo and wooden counter as a reminiscence of Chinese culture. Then, the dining area appears a hidden surprise of a journey of discovery, presenting a striking but simple design that creates a poetic notion of dining under a noodle rack.
Noodle Rack inner dining area is enclosed by a metallic grid structure, which makes a clear but permeable distinction between spaces, as a see-through box. A series of thin metal wires dangle from this rustic structure, which emulate rice noodles in a noddle rack by reflecting the light radiated from the several hanging lightings, thus reinterpreting tradition through smart design. Furthermore, in line with the sober furnishing, wooden boxes are strategically placed within the metallic grid as shelves and frameworks to show selected porcelain pieces and plants.
Lukstudio integrates the tradition of noodle making in the spatial design by reinterpreting a noodle rack
Outside, the main entrance is framed by rusted steel panels, while the rest of the façade is made up by bamboo-cast concrete –using the bamboo mold of the inside ordering counter- except for a wide glass opening enclosed by the rack metallic grid that extends out past the façade, facing one of the main shopping promenades of the city. Overall, Noodle Rack demonstrates how Chinese eateries have the potentials to be reborn into hip gathering spots comparable to the new trend of cafés.
Photos by Peter Dixie