Philly, We are finally getting our own Xi’an Famous Food
My mouth dropped open while passing through Philly’s Chinatown on the bus coming home from NYC this weekend when I saw a sign for a new restaurant- Xi’an Famous Food.
The bad news first, Xi’an occupies 902 Arch Street, meaning Szechuan Tasty House, one of the better restaurants in Chinatown, is no longer.
The good news- Xi’an food, cuisine from one of the oldest cities in China, is amazing and unique. I was first exposed to it in 2009 in my favorite dingy food court basement, Flushing’s Golden Mall, at NY’s now famous Xi’an Famous Foods. In the past few years the public has caught on, demanding for more access to the slippery noodles and cumin lamb burgers and resulting in 4 more outposts around the boroughs. Most recently, the original Midtown Lunch was lucky enough to get a Xi’an within its boundaries.
As for Philly, Happy Noodle Bar made some attempts at Xi’an food, but it wasn’t quite right.
So, I had to resort to repeatedly transporting noodles over state lines. Until now.
I found out that Philly’s Xi’an Famous Foods opened a few days ago and is not connected to the New York locations. The menu will be growing shortly. For now, just being able to get liang pi noodles ($5) locally is a big win.
This version is legit. A take out order requires you to mix the sauce and other ingredients together when you get home. Bean sprouts, cucumber, slices of gluten and the cool, slick, uneven, chewy noodles should be coated with the spicy oil and vinegar sauce. Shortly, your mouth will be left with a burning sensation that won’t stop you from eating more. I was most impressed with the texture of the noodles, the softness means they must be fresh.
I didn’t have the time or the appetite to get to the rest of the menu, but you better believe I will be back to do so and for more liang pi.
THE + (What somebody who likes this place would say)
- Real Xi’an food in Philly
THE – (What somebody who doesn’t like this place would say)
- No more Szechuan Tasty House
Xi’an Famous Foods , 902 Arch Street, 215 925 1988