Susan Johnson (more chengdu)|
The beloved traditional dish known as fuqi feipian (literally, husband and wife lung slice) consists of various bovine offal sliced thin and tossed together in a spicy seasoning. Some of the viscera are soft, some crunchy, some furry, some chewy, and all show their properties when reacting to being mixed with the spicy seasoning. It’s usually a cold dish for a starter or something to have with beer, and is the house specialty at this local restaurant on Zongfu Road.
“The tea smoked duck is great, I’m not kidding” said the server as we were pondering what else to order. She wasn’t. The pieces of duck, chopped up on the bone, were tender and full of flavour and it was our favourite dish of the night. We also got an order of gong bao ji ding. It’s the standard dish to recommend to foreigners, but a well prepared gong bao ji ding really is one of the best local dishes. Their version was a solid B+, nicely seasoned and on the sweet side, but thin on the Sichuan peppercorns and with peanuts a little softer than we like.
Their snack set meals start at RMB60 per person, but rather than order a full set we asked for a couple to try. Zhong shuijiao were nicely stuffed and seasoned with the characteristic spicy sweetness, and the san he ni was ok - very smooth textured and rich. It had fruit in it, which is unusual. The proximity to Chunxi Road and the big downtown hotels make for many out of town guests, and they have an English menu for the character challenged.
The interior, with its open kitchen, is very cool and modern but not in a way that made us feel under dressed in street clothes. There was a good buzz in the evening when we went, with tempting looking dishes being delivered to tables of mostly families and groups of friends. We also like that the servers understand the dishes and have confidence in their recommendations. The approximately 50 yuan per person bill, paid when you order, is more than we would expect to pay for food of this quality in a neighbourhood place, but this is a good spot for very authentic local dishes in a nicer environment.