Tasty House 奇妙屋

Article By Ji Kai Rui

No.37,San Xue Street, Beilin District.
碑林区三学街37号 长安学巷口
(029) 8962 9386
4:00pm – Midnight

Average Price per Person /人均消费: 55RMB

PROS:Awesome burger, open-air rooftop seating, great prices
CONS: Limited menu, a bit hard to find

Nestled in the series of hutong-like alleys just east of the South Gate entrance is a place that truly can be called a diamond in the rough. Tasty House won’t win any awards for beauty, nor is it the easiest place to find, but it is most definitely worth the journey.

The lower floor of Tasty House definitely has a unique feel. I’d call it a cross between a burger shack, a dive bar and a secondhand store. Don’t let yourself be turned off by this weird mix though, because somehow it works. The owner has tons of items for sale laying around, but they are an interesting collection of everything from classic DVDs to twenty year old BOSE home theater systems, and just wandering around looking at all the items felt like a nostalgic trip back to my childhood. The upper floor is an outdoor patio setup with a large movie projector, and would make a great hangout for late nights once the sun has gone down.

The star of Tasty House is most definitely the burger. It is hands-down one of the best burgers in Xi’an. The owner of Tasty House grew up here, and claims he had never had a great burger. Several years ago he took a trip to Beijing and had one that made him realize just what the fuss was all about. Over the next year, he visited a ton of hamburger joints around China, learning bit by bit just what makes a good burger tick, finally using all this experience to craft the menu at Tasty House. The menu isn’t big, consisting of just 3 burgers, fried chicken, and French fries, but Tasty House is definitely more about quality than quantity. I had the standard cheeseburger, and it was absolutely amazing. A soft bun, with just enough firmness to keep from falling apart. A patty cooked to medium, leaving it juicy but not messy. A full flavored cheese that I could actually taste, as opposed to the weak singles favored by most places around town. This burger wouldn’t be out of place at any decent burger joint back in the states, and that’s not something you can say often for places in this city.

The burger is great, the draft beer is cold, and the prices are significantly lower than most around town, making Tasty House a must-visit on the ever-growing list of western restaurants in Xi’an.

Ji is a singer, maker of Ejuice, and lover of all things drinkable