Taking the place of Dessert Story, Urumqi is where you can enjoy the rarely seen Uyghur cuisine, otherwise known as Xinjiang cuisine, a cuisine originating from the Chinese region of the same name. This restaurant was very popular, with a large crowd present when we visited during dinner time.
One the restaurant's most popular dishes, their Dapanji can be ordered as a medium or large sized dish, with the medium size serving suitable for a small group. The pieces of chicken were of a good size and despite having bones the flesh could easily be eaten off them. Strips of capsicum added a bit of sweetness and the use of handmade noodles added a unique texture to the dish. The sauce that the ingredients were tossed in is best described as tasting somewhat similar to a curry.
Another popular menu item is their range of grilled dishes, with customers having the opportunity to see them being prepared on the charcoal grill at the front of the restaurant. We decided to try the Chicken Wings and Lamb Kebabs. Both of the meats had a delectable char-grilled flavour and succulent flesh. They can taste a bit salty so eating them with bread or rice is advisable.
Chicken Wings and Lamb Kebabs (Photographed by Jonathan Phoon)
Their Stir-fried Sesame Chicken with Noodles is a good choice for those that want something similar to the Dapanji but of a more manageable size. The taste of the gravy is similar to the popular Chilli Chicken dish, with potatoes providing a foil to the spicy gravy. We were delighted that the noodles were of the same quality as that in their Dapanji.
Stir-fried Sesame Chicken with Noodles (Photographed by Jonathan Phoon)
One of the options that are suitable for vegetarians, the tofu in their Home Style Tofu was cooked just right with the vegetables having the right amount of bite to them. Though the gravy had a bit of spice to it, the degree of spiciness should be suitable for most people.
Home Style Tofu (Photographed by Jonathan Phoon)
The chunks of beef in their Braised Beef were of a good size while still being quite tender. The taste of the gravy was quite unique, with a distinctive sour flavour coming from what tasted like vinegar. Cooked with the beef were vegetables that still had a nice firmness to them.
Braised Tofu (Photographed by Jonathan Phoon)
The eggs in the Fried Chives with Egg dish had a wonderful fluffy texture with the chives subtly enhancing their flavour. While not mentioned in the dish's description, it included tomatoes for a bit of sweetness. This dish's mild flavour makes it great as a companion dish for their richer tasting dishes.
Fried Chives with Egg (Photographed by Jonathan Phoon)
Though the restaurant is quite small, it still had a comfortable causal ambience with a good amount of seating space. Its relatively close location to Chinatown makes it convenient for shoppers to drop by to try something a bit different from the usual Chinese food.