Article By David Lee
XI’an Inno Start–up Wonderland,Gao Xin 2 Road.
153 8907 0565
11:30am – 2:30pm
5:30am – 10:30pm
Average Price per Person /人均消费: 400 RMB
PROS: Location, vibe
CONS: Price, seasoning
Maillard provides an excellent blending of sophisticated western-style dining with a refreshingly relaxed atmosphere—if you’re willing to pay for it.
Nestled inside Gaoxin’s coffee street, this small steakhouse will win you over with its magnificent sides and accoutrements before the meat even comes out.
When I was searching for the restaurant, I looked through the large exterior windows and saw an employee in a graphic tee serving some students playing mobile phone games.
“Surely this isn’t the luxury steakhouse,” I thought to myself as I started to make a call. But I was mistaken. I was welcomed in by that same employee, the owner of Le Meillard, who proudly serves dry-aged Wagyu steaks and tuna tartare with a t-shirt and a smile.
The restaurant is cozy, able to comfortably seat about 20 customers, but it still feels like a high-end experience. The vibrant wooden décor and intricate plating and cutlery gives this restaurant a rarefied air.
The side dishes I had, including an arugula salad, tuna tartare, mashed potatoes and asparagus stole the show. The quality and care put into each of those dishes really create a sense of wonder. As each dish came out in succession, the expectations were even higher but the first bite of each dish was such a pleasant surprise.
The steaks are priced by gram, so the sizes are completely up to the customer. They have pre-cut but most customers should be able to get roughly the amount they are looking for. My steak was about 300 grams, which should be decent enough without completely breaking the budget. One note of caution: a steak that is 2 RMB/gram as opposed to 1 RMB/gram will literally be double the price. It might seem obvious, but that is a difference of hundreds of Yuan. Just be aware when you are ordering or taking recommendations about the different cuts of meat. I did find the steaks a little on the thin side and the seasoning was a little peppery for my taste. These are small misses in a generally excellent experience.
Sitting in Maillard gives you a feeling of the new money that has entered into Gaoxin district, and Xi’an in general. The food is expensive, for sure, but the restaurant is completely unconcerned with the bourgeois attitude or stuffiness that usually accompanies that wealth. If you are celebrating a special occasion or your wallet is feeling just a little too heavy these days, put on a hoodie and head over to Maillard.
David Lee is a reviewer for Xianease hoping to eventually write something as good as “real g’s move in silence like lasagna.” He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org