Xi Xia Western Chinese Cuisine – Spiciest Dish in Columbus Series
Previously, on Asian restaurants located at Kenny and Old Henderson…
We’ve written before about Sushi Ten and the Tensuke Plaza, but if you head to the Kenny Centre Mall side, past Belle’s Bakery, you’ll find Xi Xia Western Chinese Cuisine. A small interior and an equally small menu focuses on more traditional Chinese food, so don’t go expecting to find General Tso’s or Orange Chicken. Instead you’ll find dishes like Lamb Stew, Sezchuan Spicy Dry Hot Pot and Signature Beef Noodles.
The menu is primarily focused on noodles and soups, and owner Luzhou Sha intends to keep it focused on more traditional Chinese dishes into the future.
First up were the Pop Fries, “waffle fries served with cheese, kimchi and house sweet & sour sauce.”
Nothing crazy to write home about here, but the extra combo of kimchi and sweet and sour sauce was pretty unique. We had never thought to dip waffle fries into that type of sauce before, but now it will be hard to go back to ketchup. We’re fans of just about any type of potato, so it’s hard to go wrong in this category.
It’s not labeled with any peppers next to it on the menu, but we were very curious to try the Szechuan Spicy Chicken Leg. “Boiled chicken leg with house Sezchuan hot sauce served with peanuts, garlic pieces, green onion and cilantro” sounded pretty tasty.
Quick note, the chicken is bone in, so be prepared when you start eating this dish. Thankfully we noticed before we started in, but I’m sure it surprises some folks. A tiny, sneaky heat, the chicken is cooked well and the sauce combines a lot of flavors with just the right amount of garlic and green onions to get us to keep working through the slivers of chicken. Definitely a dish where you want to make sure you’re trying to soak up as much of the sauce as possible. We even ended up dipping some Handmade Spring Rolls in there, just to soak more of it up.
The time had come to dig into one of their “two pepper” dishes (the most on their menu) and we opted for the Dapanji Stirred Noodles.
Similar to when we went to Noodle Topia, we learned that all noodles at Xi Xia Western Chinese Cuisine are homemade. Freshly prepared dough that is then put through a machine, the noodles in the Dapanji dish were thick and chewy, but above all pretty darn tasty. Made with “bone-in chicken legs fried with house special hot sauce and topped with fried potatoes, peppers, green onion and cilantro,” this is an addictive dish. On the surface, there’s nothing crazy going on, but for the Dapanji Stirred Noodles, the sauce pulls it all together.
Correct, we said sauce, not broth. We weren’t sure what to expect, but unlike other noodle dishes, the noodle covering for this dish is almost paste-like, which sounds unappetizing but is delicious. This allows the noodles to retain a lot of the flavor of the sauce and especially as you get to the bottom, there’s a savory aspect of the sauce that masks an addictive heat. Similar to other Sezchuan-style dishes I found myself hopping back in, bite after bite. With chunks of chicken (again, bone-in) and a marinated egg, this dish is extremely filling. Due to the thickness of the sauce, my entire mouth was coated with the lingering heat of this dish. A bit heavy on the cilantro and a good mix of (what seemed like) peanut oil, the sauce is satisfying.
A few minutes after finishing, the heat still lingered. It’s not a cry your eyes out or go through eighteen tissues hot, but it’s a reasonable, enjoyable heat level. Some will find it too spicy, but most spicy fiends will find it acceptable. It’s deceptive and addictive and I’m definitely trying it again at some point. While the GOGi Spicy Chicken Stir Fry may be spicier, both are equally addictive. That in mind, we’re placing the Dapanji Stirred Noodles at #27, just below Satori Ramen Bar and their Kara Kapow and above Urban Meyer’s Pint House “Hot” Hot Chicken Sandwich.
If you’re looking to break away from your typical Chinese food, Xi Xia Western Chinese Cuisine is definitely an excellent choice. You can find Xi Xia Western Chinese Cuisine at 1140 Kenny Centre Mall, Columbus, OH 43220.
Look below for more in our spiciest dish in Columbus series and hit us up if you have any suggestions that are not already on our list!
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