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Xi Xiang Ji

Add:407 Hushu Rd (near Pudding Hotel)

Tel:0571-8883 8887

2013-05-23

The restaurant borrows its name from the classic Yuan Dynasty (1271–1368) play "Xi Xiang Ji" ("Romance of the West Chamber") -by Wang Shifu - though with some alteration. While the "xiang" (厢) in the book, means chamber, here another "xiang" (湘) character is used, the abbreviation for Hunan Province.

The owner of the restaurant is from Hunan, and is a huge fan of the play - apparent from his cosplay photographs based on its characters.

The Hunan native serves authentic Hunan cuisine - also named Xiang cuisine, typified by the signature "Red Country" dish.

Served in a basin-sized bowl, this comprisesof a layer of one kind of chili pepper upon a layer of another kind of red pepper - witha fish head underneath.

On the table, this seems to heat the very air around it - both through its temperature and pungent spiciness. Try it if you dare!

Hot fish head dishes are the specialty, and "Red Country," a reference to Hunan being Chairman Mao Zedong's home province, is the hottest.

If that sounds too hot, the least fiery option is red plum fish, a white fish steamed with dried chili. The flesh is suitable for diners who don't like it too hot.

The restaurant also features a garden filled with bamboo, while its walls are painted with illustrations from "Romance of the West Chamber," creating a pleasant dining environment.

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