Xi’an is one of the oldest cities in China and one of the birthplace of China’s civilization. It is centrally located in China, and was also the eastern terminus of the Silk Road. All this made it possible to Xi’an to develop a long culinary tradition, one of the longest in China, and their cuisine is full of different components, creating the huge number of various and delicious dishes. They frequently use salt, garlic and vinegar, making the food quite spicy and of interesting and unusual flavor. Xi’an is especially known for its snacks, and wherever you go, you may find some, whether in shops, restaurants or street stalls. Among them, maybe the most famous are candies of different sizes, shapes and tastes, dim sum, dried fruit and desserts which should not be avoided in any case.
There are also many Muslims in Xi’an and their cuisine is different from Chinese, as well as from cuisines of Muslims around the world. They developed their own sub-cuisine making the already rich cuisine of Xi’an even richer and more interesting. It is one of the main reasons why this quarter is so interesting for tourists, and for locals as well, since it is the place where you can go without the fear of remaining hungry. Here you may find Pita Bread Soaked in Lamb Soup, Marinated Meat in a Baked Bun and other quite unusual dishes to enjoy eating.
One of the most interesting local dishes is Yang Rou Pao Mo (羊肉泡馍), bread in mutton stew. It is made of mutton, and in restaurants it is served separately with round bread, but in order to eat it, you have to break the bread into small pieces, and to put it inside to mix the flavors. Rou Jia Mo (肉夹馍), Chinese burger with stewed meat, should also be tried, being a very interesting form of Chinese hamburger, which can be made with pork, beef or lamb, according to your preferences. Guan Tang Bao (灌汤包子), a Chinese soup with meat dumpling, is also worth tasting, as well Xi’an Dumpling Dinner (西安饺子宴; xī’ān jiǎozi yàn), since Chinese dumplings are quite famous and tasty. Cold Noodles (凉皮; liángpí) should not be missed as well, and whether made of rice or flour, when served with red spicy pepper and green bean sprout they make an excellent meal and a great experience.
Lao Sun Jia (老孙家) $
Cuisine: Yang Rou Pao Mo, Shaanxi
Address: 78 Dongguan Main Street, Beilin District ( 碑林区东关正街78号); another branches available around the city
Xi’an Restaurant (西安饭庄) $
Address: 298 Dongda Jie, Beilin District (碑林区东大街298号)
Fan Ji La Zhi Rou Dian (樊记腊汁肉店) $
Cuisine: Rou Jia Mo, Shaanxi
Address: 53 Zhu Ba Shi, Beilin District, near Drum Tower
Wei Jia Liang Pi (Cold Noodles) $
Cuisine: Cold Noodles, Shaanxi
Address: 3 South Road, Beilin District; another branches available around the city
Sheng Zhi Wang Ma Jiang Niang Pi Pu (盛志望麻酱酿皮铺) $
Cuisine: Cold Noodles, Muslim, Shaanxi
Address: 225 Da Pi Yuan west side, Lianhu District
Defachang Dumpling Restaurant (德发长饺子馆) $$
Cuisine: Dumpling Dinner, Chinese
Address: 3 West Street, Bell Tower Square (西大街3号)
Web address: www.dfc.com.cn
Phone: 8721 4060
Opening hours: 11:00-14:00 and 17:00-21:00