Xi’an Eatery 西安诱惑 – Burwood NSW Restaurant Review

It was the last day before the NSW Dine and Discover vouchers were to expire, and we, along with what seemed like half of the inner-West were lined up on Burwood Rd outside a handful of restaurants still enrolled in the program and willing to accept the vouchers.

We decided on Xi’an Eatery, a place recommended to us by a colleague for its good and cheap food with a reasonable line and an incredibly exhausted workforce who looked like they were perhaps having the busiest and worst day of their lives. Our meal was preceded by an inexplicable half hour wait outside the restaurant as no less than half the tables were vacated and cleaned, before we and the next batch of patrons were admitted. Either fortunately or unfortunately for the staff this was a process marked by significant attrition, as some of our previously unknown compatriots left towards the end of the wait to spend their stimulus-bux further down the street.

Though the outside process was unimpressive, the actual process of dining, from ordering to eating, was incredibly rapid and smooth once we set foot into the restaurant. The staff were flustered but absolutely lovely, probably glad that none of our wave felt the need to engage them into what I can only imagine was an in-depth discussion regarding the origins of the ingredients like members of the previous batch. Food arrived rapidly at our table within just minutes of ordering, and consumed with similar rapidity, hunger being the best sauce.

The Signature Xi’an Pulled Pork Burger (roujiamo – $8.30 including optional coriander) was a specialty of the house, and believed by some specialists to be a marker of a Xi’an restaurant’s quality. I’m by no means a roujiamo expert, but I did find this one to be reasonably satisfying. The filling – mixture of fatty and lean pork – had excellent flavour, moistness, and mouthfeel, contrasting to my other most recent roujiamo at Taste of Xi’an in Wollongong, which I felt did not have as adequate and well distributed fatness. I’m surprised that coriander was a 50c addition, as I feel that the flavour it added was too beneficial to be left out. This must be an option because of the minority of inferior humans who find coriander unpleasant, and perhaps in a thousand years this will no longer be the case. Green capsicum is also a 50c addition, and I regret not getting it. Great filling aside, I did not love the bread, which I found to be oddly crumbly in the mouth.

I really enjoyed how lean these Xi’an Lamb Skewers ($10.80) were, but found them a bit underflavoured for my liking. It was not very spicy, even though the menu threatened it. While some online photos suggest that a bit of chilli powder is served on the side, ours didn’t come with any extra to add on, leaving us with a perfectly tender and lean lamb skewer without much flavour. If I could go back in time I would ask for some.

Another Shaanxi specialty, the Signature Biang Biang Noodle with Pork ($14.30) was one of the best I’ve ever had. The thick gravy was nice and tangy, with a good portion of meat and eggs, while the noodles had a nice Q texture. No complaints here.

The Signature Pork Pan Fried Dumplings ($12.80) were another success in a long string of successes, with a very juicy and meaty filling with good umami flavour, clearly housemade. The cooking style of these pan fried dumplings did however unfortunately lead to some jagged and dry wrapper edges, but not enough to ruin the overall good experience.

I had a good and inexpensive meal, and I think so will you. Everything we had was pretty good, and the very nice staff rallied hard in the face of adversity. Recommend.

Xi’an Eatery 西安诱惑
183D Burwood Rd, Burwood NSW 2134
(02) 8056 4600

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *