Mark Hiew (more chengdu)|
This unpretentious restaurant serves up classic home-style Sichuanese fare that is sure to satisfy any appetite, without disemboweling your wallet. Its convenient location on the same street as the Loft hostel and Morning bar makes it an ideal spot for pairing with other attractions on this authentically shambolic, tucked-away boutique street in the city’s northwest.
The star attraction was the sizzling beef skillet, tiěbǎn niúròu, (25RMB), which comes out in a dramatic popping display. As the laoban lifted off the cover revealing a jumbo portion of thin, lean beef slices, surrounded by colorful peppers and onions, bathing in a tangy, sweet sauce, we knew we were in for a treat. It’s a dish deserved of its classic status, and Jia Jia’s is particularly satisfying.
Another standout is the spicy wood ear fungus, liángbàn mù'ěr, 6RMB), but the generous amount of red chili pepper and coriander dressing used might prove a little heavy for some. For those in favor of soaring flavors will appreciate how the sauce complements the soft, satisfyingly giving consistency of the fungus, as the taste more than makes up for the “spice pains.”
Prices, in general, from the Chinese-only menu are very reasonable, with the kung pao chicken (15RMB), and the fish-fragrant eggplant (8RMB)—golden in its goodness—rounding out a very filling meal. Specialty dishes include the “seven internal duck” qīlǐ yā (28RMB) and, “grandma’s home-style fish,” jiāxiāng wàipó yú (28RMB), alongside specialty cooking techniques, such as the spicy, “short pillar,” bāo lèi dishes (38-40RMB) or the lighter-flavored lianguo-style, liánguō (38-58RMB). Cold beer is available. Look to spend 20-30RMB each.