Top 3 Chinese Restaurants in Suzhou Industrial Park, (on a budget).
Updated: Aug 5
Within a two km radius of where we are based in Suzhou Industrial Park, there are many small restaurants, mainly noodle houses or hot pot places. Most are selling soupy noodle dishes, or variations on this theme. I would turn down Suzhou soupy noodles for a cheese sandwich any day but I have, after some investigation, discovered three wonderful little joints, serving a variety of tasty snacks and meals, all of which are frequented by locals and rarely by foreigners...
1. Jian Kang Ye Shi
Location: Shicheng Road by Nanshi Park
Best pit stop, (other than street food vendors), for a hearty breakfast. You will sample the nationwide, famous youtiao, (long savoury doughnuts), that you can dip into soy milk or rice porridge. You can also try chun tian, ( spring rolls which you buy from the freezer in Asda, but they're not quite the same), flakey pastries with sweet nutty/raisin paste filling and xiao long bao, (delicate steamed dumplings). All this would cost you approximately £ 3 .
2. Zhen Lao Shan; means: Very Traditional Northwestern (food).
Located: Just outside the south side of Vanguard Shopping Mall, Fangzhou Road
This little place has a rustic, homey feel, generated by the simple wooden style benches and long tables. The food is based on Xi'an, (where the terracotta warriors are), style cuisine, so tends to be more savoury than the local Suzhou style, which often is a little sweet. My favourite lunch bites are:
Succulent shredded beef or lamb incased in a flakey, buttery bun, (soooo yummy).
Biang Biang Mian
Thus called because of the sound created when the noodles are made from scratch, they are slapped on the table top to stretch them out. This dish's thick noodles in a hot tomato- based stew is super nourishing and warming for a cosy winter's day lunch.
3. Ga Kao Jiang- Chinese Barbeque
Located: Just beyond Nanshi Park, half -way down Shicheng Road
This place welcomes garlic and oil like an old friend, in equal quantities, and well, the food is rather satisfying as a result. I recommend this place for a post- run calorie top-up or a girls' (or boys') night out.
I found peanut butter flavoured beer in bottles and it's given beer a whole new echelon of esteem and admiration in my mind.
spicy lamb kebabs (also non spicy)
open grilled herby aubergine (oh my)
corn on a kebab
grilled, oily mushrooms
grilled green beans
A decent meal and a drink will cost you less than £ 10 .
So; there we have a breakfast, lunch and dinner recommendation all within a 5-10 minute walk.