Article By Oomesh Nana
2F, Ling Hai Da Sha, L Di, NO.1, Jin Ye Road.
(029) 6236 5323
10:00am – 9:00pm
Average Price per Person /人均消费: 180RMB
PROS: Good food
When working and living as an expat in Xi’an, you can become fully immersed in one of the most traditional, cultural and historical settings in China. Still, sometimes a foreigner craves flavors from more familiar shores.
Being an author, food writer and monthly contributor to various publications, I attended a food fair a few months back. I was drawn, as if by a powerful magnetism, to a booth that was emblazoned with “Bantoo” (a name many South Africans are familiar with). I soon found myself in deep conversation with owner and restaurateur Yang Fan, a trained architect and passionate seeker of good food and wine.
Within a couple of weeks I was invited to dine at Bantoo. I was ecstatic to discover that they have a chef with experience in preparing western flavors for foreign palates. I had my napkin tucked in and, armed with cutlery, was ready to devour a taste from home. The menu boasts a mélange of dishes that cater to a wide range of guests. The three top dishes, which in my opinion stand head-and-shoulders above the rest, were the Wellington – beef fillet enrobed in crisp pastry (succulent and tender and presented creatively), pan-seared prawns with a sugary black pepper sauce (highly recommended) and the slow-roasted bone marrow with oxtail – meltingly tender and soulful for a rich appetite. Heaven!
I was kindly asked to advise them on the menu and have been gladly sharing my ideas and inspirations with the chef, who now is creating an odyssey of western food, serving and educating diners with flavors from afar..Apart from the gourmet food, it also boasts a tipple selection from vineyards around the world, predominantly (and I say this triumphantly) South African wines. With the new South African dishes on the menu, I am confident that this will take Bantoo to greater heights as it grows and expands its range of top quality dishes and beautiful wines from my ever-so-fond African shores.
The ambience is relaxed, calm and one can see the true passion for décor and artistic taste that Yang Fan has carefully displayed, to make his restaurant have an authentic, homey South African feel.
One can enjoy both food and wine with tasteful background music, which coalesce into a superlative dining experience, making a night at Bantoo a truly memorable and sophisticated one. I am certain that I will be returning to Bantoo soon, hungry for more, and I encourage all young or old palates to indulge in what this fine restaurant has to offer.
The famous South African food writer Mesh is now a passionate volunteer food consultant for Bantoo, in order to provide you very traditional South African cuisine.