JUMBO Seafood 珍宝海鲜

Article By Mike Leaner

11F, SKP, Changan North Road.
(029) 8932 3435
11:30am – 2:00pm
5:30pm – 9:00pm

Average Price per Person /人均消费: 365RMB

PROS: Fresh seafood; reasonable prices for the experience you get; excellent service

CONS: Market availability

Getting seafood this far away from the sea can be a dodgy prospect, but if you go to Jumbo Seafood you can rest assured that you’ll get quality seafood for fairly decent prices..

My visit to Jumbo Seafood was also my first time in the fancy pants SKP Shopping Mall at South Gate. I was immediately concerned that I was underdressed for the occasion, but though the restaurant is undeniably upscale, I was right at home amongst the other t-shirt clad patrons. When you enter, you’ll be taken past a line of tanks filled with live crustaceans and fish, a testament to just how fresh your meal will be. If you’re lucky, you’ll also be able to get a table next to their panoramic windows overseeing South Gate—such a clear and impressive view you’d probably be able to catch the South Gate Dancing for Tourists Extravaganza if you’re dining at the proper hour. But we’re not here to talk about how I’m a child who likes looking out windows, we’re here to talk about the food, so let’s get into it.

Jumbo Seafood pulled out all the stops for my dining partner and me, and we got a wonderful sampling of their menu. At first we nibbled on complimentary prawn crackers, but quickly our table was filled with some of their turf offerings (we’ll get to the surf in a second). The black pepper beef was not quite as expected, but the flavor was nice and it was pre-sliced so it was easy to share. A lamb chop came soon after, and while I had to do the surgery on it myself, it was tender and flavorful. Now to the seafood. We got to try some cereal-battered shrimp, which added a satisfying crunch and a slight sweetness to the dish. The cod came in a light sauce and was perfectly cooked. But the star of the show was a big crab—we chose a black pepper seasoning, but other flavors were available. This was perhaps the most fun part of the meal, as we got to dig in with the claw crackers and everything to hunt for every succulent piece of meat. We finished with a warm puff dessert filled with durian ice cream. It won’t be to everyone’s taste, but I enjoyed it. The one caveat is that, since freshness is paramount here, not all dishes will be available all the time; however, the menu is sizeable so you should find an acceptable substitute if your desired meal is unavailable.

In summation, Jumbo Seafood does a great job bringing a fresh seafood dining experience to landlocked Xi’an. Whether you’re taking the seafood lover in your life out for a special occasion, or just got a little extra cash to burn on a fancy dinner, it’s a good choice for dining out.

Mike Leaner likes to get dirty but not for free. He can be reached at reviews@xianease.com