New York: Xi'an Famous Foods

My sister and I passed by this on Thursday. We were really full by then but we still stood at the window for a good while, looking at the pictures of the hand-pulled noodles, wondering if we had enough stomach space to fit a plate in. We ultimately decided to pass, but on Friday, I dragged my sister back down to the East Village to Xi'an Famous Foods for lunch:

Xi'an Famous Foods is rather small inside. If there are no seats available, you have to order to-go. But if there are seats open, you can choose to eat in.

Luckily there were still seats available when we arrived. The place quickly filled up after we placed our order and sat down though:

The menu is on the wall, so you have to quickly scan through all the yummy pictures while you're standing in line. Everything is really cheap, but it's cash only so beware.

I've mentioned before about how big of a lamb freak I am, but have I mentioned that it's a family trait? My entire family (with the exception of my mom) loves lamb. Well, my sister and I had a lamb field day at Xi'an Famous Foods.

First I got the lamb burger:

The lamb is heavily seasoned with cumin. It's quite spicy, but it hurts so good. It comes in a "mo", which is this very dense unleavened bread.

Back in California, my family used to alway go to this Chinese Muslim restaurant that would serve lamb soup poured over ripped pieces of mo (it's called "pao mo", which literally means "soaked mo"). I never had it anywhere else, so I got super excited when I saw lamb pao mo soup on the menu at Xi'an Famous Foods. Unfortunately, we didn't order it.

My sister wasn't really into mo...what she really wanted hand-pulled noodles. I wanted it too, so no complaints here. Instead of pao mo, we went with the spicy cumin lamb noodles:

I adore thick noodles like this. Again, the lamb was SPICY, but I withstood the pain with only mild panting and hand-fanning.

The next time I'm in New York, I'll definitely try to make it back to try the pao mo. That or the zha jiang noodles I kept seeing other people order.

This post sums up my food adventures in New York over spring break. Friday night was spent eating in with my good friends. (Fried mashed potato tacos. Yea. You read right. Weep in awe.) Saturday was spent hanging out at the Met and then hitting up the halal truck for the 3rd time in a week. (Hey, don't judge. I started my trip with halal, I figured I should end with it too.) And then Sunday before the crack of dawn, I was on the bus heading to the airport.

Love New York. Love the food, love the bustle, love the attitude. Can't wait to go back again!

Xi'an Famous Foods
81 St Marks Pl
New York, NY 10003
(212) 786-2068




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