Xi’an Food Bar
As part of a frenzy of eating for the Metro Magazine Cheap Eats special we paid a visit to Xi’an Food Bar in the city. We had heard good things.
No sense in wasting a paragraph on the décor or ambience as there really was none to speak of – this place is all about the food. It’s somewhere to go for good takeout or a bite on the way to somewhere else. Not a first date venue.
We ordered the Hand Pulled Noodles with Lamb Soup ($8.50), the Hand Pulled Noodles with Xi’an Style Braised Pork ($9), the Seaweed Salad with Sauce ($6.50), and two of the Chinese style burgers (one spicy pork and one corned beef – $4.50 each). Now I know burgers don’t sound particularly Chinese but this flatbread – called pita, but slightly thicker than what we know here as pita – is a very popular street food snack in the city of Xi’an, influenced no doubt by the Muslim population.
Everything was great (except the Corned Beef pita – would miss this out on a repeat visit) and this was a true Cheap Eat at a total of $33 to easily feed four people. The noodles were amazing and had that distinctive firmer hand- pulled texture I love. The ones we had in the lamb soup were delightful with a hint of coriander and lemon to give it a beautiful freshness. The drier ones served with the pork were equally wonderful when combined with the fall-apart slow cooked, rich, perfectly spiced pork with a handful of spring onions over top for texture. It was the same pork we had in the ‘burger’ which was also perfect comfort food for a rainy Auckland night – like a really good hearty, drippy spicy stew sandwich with freshly baked bread. The Seaweed Salad was tasty and perfectly spiced, and mercifully appeared to be lacking the bright green artificial hue that so many have around town.
We will definitely be finding an excuse to return to Xi’an Food Bar and are also keen to try the other branches of it round town. Can only hope they are as good as this wonderful addition to our ever diversifying Chinese food scene.