Article By Giulia and Sasha

When we were offered a chance to review the new STA Chef Studio Timekiller restaurant, we were really excited about it.

Finally, a truly cool restaurant on Bar Street! If you usually spend your weekend nights on DeFuXiang, you’ve probably already stumbled across this hip-looking restaurant on the south entrance of the street, just 10 steps away from 3as4.

The STA crew are young entrepreneurs from Xi’an, talented hip hop artists and enthusiasts. You know, the cool kids. They have been active for some years already and this “Chef Studio Timekiller” is their latest project.

The place looks like a modern pop-art gallery, and it’s only after a more careful look that you realize the tasteful mix of Classical Chinese and western styles in the design. This is actually the whole concept of the restaurant: East meets West, but in a much cooler way. The menu itself is the perfect representation of this idea: Lanzhou-style hand pulled noodles and hot pot specials present themselves alongside the Bad Boy salad and the Bad Boy burger.

After the food was ordered and the beers had arrived, lighting up a cigarette sounded like a grand idea, but according to the staff we had to enjoy our meal without the cigarette smoke around. Fear not, nicotine addicts, they have a comfy couch outside just for you.

I have to say I loved the noodles! The presentation of my seafood YouPo noodles (油泼面) was impeccable, and stirring that treat with long chopsticks was both a pleasure and a torture; oh I was so hungry! The sauce was not too greasy and carefully preserved the authentic taste of each ingredient; the prawns, squid, and mushrooms were perfectly combined. And how nice it is to have actually “just a little bit of chili”. Devoured in 7 minutes. Meanwhile Giulia’s Bad Boy Burger arrived with a side of Bad Boy potato wages, wrapped with love in tin foil, and a can of Coke, all served in a metal flower pot! While I was getting busy with my noodles, I missed her first bite and all I heard was – “Oh my! Dayum!” That’s how good it was. She said it was a very unusual burger, pointing out the taste of the home baked bun and a juicy, well-cooked beef patty complimented by an interesting choice of ingredients. The potato wages were crunchy on the outside and very tasty. We washed it all down with two Kirin beers, and we were satisfied.

STA Food is a perfect place to have dinner in style before you start your Friday night. Although the staff doesn’t really speak English the menu is bilingual and quite small, which makes it pretty easy to navigate. Prices are affordable, 60 yuan for the burger, 30 for the noodles or the Bad Boy Salad, and quality is assured. The hip vibe doesn’t really make it a family restaurant, unless you are a very cool family.

Winter is coming, and sometimes you are just really craving for a delicious bowl of noodles or a Bad Boy burger that maybe you could cook yourself, but let’s be honest, ain’t nobody got time for that! STA is definitely a must go!

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