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BEST FORLunch; dinner
PRICE (APPETIZER; ENTRÉE)RMB 10-40; RMB 30-80
FAMOUS PLATESYangrou chuan'r (lamb kebabs); dapanji (chicken stew)
DRINKS AND WINEXinjiang beer and unpretentious international brews like Budweiser
# OF SEATS100-150
PRIVATE ROOM AVAILABLE?Yes
Raucous Sanlitun institution famed for its steaming plates of Uighur classics and a fabulously tacky song-and-dance routine from China’s northwestern Xinjiang region. (With a large Muslim population and close cultural links to Central Asia, the cuisine of Xinjiang’s ethnic Uighurs is heavy on mutton kebabs and hearty stews, while the traditional performances are of the veils-and-belly-dancing variety.) Seated at long canteen-style tables, diners banter convivially as they chow down, though the roaring soundtrack can at times drown out conversation.
Mainly foreign travelers and expats. New-to-town execs stop by for the “exotic” floorshow, while Muslim tourists and locals are attracted by the halal menu. A smattering of homesick Uighurs can always be found in the crowd.
WHAT WE WOULD WEAR
It’s super casual–what with the sloshing pints of Bud, sloppy kebabs, and smoky atmosphere, we’d recommend a machine-washable look. Try jeans and a fun graphic t-shirt with some fun sandals.
GO HERE WITH
Friends; a large group; Beijing first-timers
WHY WE LIKE IT
The chuan’r (kebabs) are juicy and generously portioned–a culinary step up from stingier offerings at rinky-dink neighborhood joints. And when we’re looking to kick off a wild night in Sanlitun, nothing beats dinner here–the boisterous crowds, free-flowing beer, and kitsch-as-can-be floorshow sure get our hearts pumping.
WHAT WE WOULD CHANGE
Compared with other Xinjiang joints around town, the prices here are pretty steep, even though the food remains solidly average. Also, the blaring music from the floorshow makes carrying on conversation nigh impossible.
GOOD TO KNOW
Avoid eye contact with “the snake lady” during the floorshow (trust us, you’ll know her when you see her), or you could easily end up getting hauled onto the stage. The performances start at 7:40pm, and last orders are at 11:00pm. If you’re having trouble finding it, look for the Olive Restaurant directly across from the Workers' Stadium–The Xinjiang Red Rose is tucked just behind it. All food is halal. Credit cards not accepted.
Read more about The Xinjiang Red Rose in The Diary
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