Article By Mike Leaner
FA203, Wang Fu Jiang Shopping Mall, No.88, Nan Guan Zheng Jie, Bei Lin District.
王府井百货 二层广场 FA203
(029) 8542 5575
11:00am – 00:30am
Average Price per Person /人均消费: 120RMB
PROS: Good food; great service; excellent atmosphere
CONS: You’ll have to use the public restrooms of the building Lenbach is in (but they’re reasonably clean for a Xi’an public restroom)
What is it about German food that appeals so much to the locals? Maybe it’s the meaty platters of food, maybe it’s the better-than-average beer that you usually can find at one of these places; I’m not really sure. Still, it feels like half of the reviews we do here at Xianease are German restaurants, so the question then becomes this: if you need a banger in the mouth, which of these Bavarian eateries is the one you should be going to, and how does it differentiate itself from its competitors? For those asking themselves the same thing, I took a trip to Lenbach recently, and they’ve certainly made a strong case for themselves.
Located in the Wangfujing shopping mall at South Gate (Leban devotees will know the spot), when you visit you would be forgiven for thinking that things seem pretty typical. You take the stairs up to the courtyard, there’s a patio facing the rest of the courtyard, etc. If you go inside though, you’ll find a striking dining room, with checkered floor tiles, brick walls and, best of all, an absolutely amazing façade looking down on South Gate.
All that nicety would be for nothing though, if Lenbach didn’t have some tasty food to go with it. They have a rather expansive menu (albeit one heavily weighted towards the meaty), with burgers and steak and the like, I kept things more explicitly German with a sausage plate. It had five different varieties of sausage and came with mustard, mashed potatoes and sauerkraut. There’s no doubt how I felt about what I was served, because it didn’t last long. Afterwards, I had a mug of pilsner and a pretzel and soaked up the sights of South Gate’s endless evening bustle. All in all, a pretty great meal.
If I had to come to a conclusion about Lenbach, it would be this: while I greatly enjoyed my food there, the impetus for you to check this place out would be the atmosphere. It was relaxed, quiet and the service was top-notch. And really, you can’t beat that view. Even if you’re only after a beer and a couple of pretzels, you won’t regret your visit.
Mike Leaner likes to get dirty but not for free. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org