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 



  • User has not uploaded an avatar

    Those look great, I’ll be in Center City on Friday around lunch and may have to stop in for them…

    The minus = starting a new job within the next couple of weeks near Newark Airport. I’ll have to live up there four or five days a week for the next twenty years.

    The plus = keeping my current cheap apartment here, as well, and I’ll be home in Philly every weekend, holiday and vacation week. With money to eat out for change, too. Whoo!

  • I wonder if Jason Wang has the “Xi’an Famous Food” name trademarked


    Apparently there is a trademark for Xi’an Famous Foods along with the Chinese symbols.

    Using a registered trademark in a way that
    is “likely to cause confusion, to cause mistake, or to deceive” is a violation of the Lanham Act.

    So, maybe lets not let the NY company know…

  • User has not uploaded an avatar

    Noooooooo! Szechuan Tasty House is gone? Where do I get my spicy soup now???

  • User has not uploaded an avatar

    Headed on in here this afternoon for a post-Kinetic Derby lunch. For $5, I was only expecting like half of what I got! Great value, or at least I think it is. First time I’ve had this. I didn’t really sense any heat, but the sauce had a bunch of good stuff going on, and the noodles really were fantastic.

    Took mine to-go, there were about a dozen other people eating inside (I was the only non-Asian). Everything I was able to sneak a peek at looked good. Kind of dark inside, or maybe it was just the semi-miserable day.

    I’m definitely gonna be back again to try the other stuff. If I can manage to not just order this again, that is. I do tend to fall into those kinds of ruts, unfortunately. But at least it’s always with good food. ;)

    I think next time my family’s down here, this would be a good place to go and try a good chunk of the menu.

    I should have noted if the menu expanded yet, but I forgot. Don’t quote me on this, but I think it’s still the same as above.

  • User has not uploaded an avatar

    They’ve changed their name and signage to “Xi’an Sizzling Woks.”

    I guess no more legal worries now!

  • User has not uploaded an avatar

    Spicy. Sour. Minced. Pork. Noodle.
    O. M. G.
    Jamie – you MUST try.

  • Jay- thanks on the name change report. Better they got it done sooner rather than after they have their menus, etc. printed.

    Mary- Sounds YUMM!

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