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July 18, 2006

New restaurant in the neighborhood

We probably could have used this title during any of the 132 weeks we have lived in Nantong.

It seems that there is always some restaurant within a 20-minute walk of our apartment that is opening, closing, or just rennovating. Sadly, one of the recent changes was the destruction of the entire block of buildings that housed a Japanese-style habachi restaurant we used to eat at periodically.

Anyway, a few weeks ago, I noticed a bright green sign over a small new fast-food restaurant on Xue Tian Nan Lu, just across the street from the main gate at the rear of our "xiao qu," or apartment compound. The resaurant looked well-lit and clean, and the sign announced (in Chinese, of course), "Open 24 Hours." The name is Da Wan Mian, which means "big bowl of noodles." It is part of a chain, though I don't know how many locations they have or where. Terry and I went for dinner last weekend, and the experience was great -- good food, good service, low price, clean environment, not too crowded. The speciality, as you might guess, is noodles, but they have other dishes as well. Four 16 rmb ($2), we got 2 big bowls of noodle soup with cooked green vegetables, a big plate of "su ji" (chicken-textured dofu), and a bottle of beer. We will have time for at least one more trip to Da Wan Mian before we leave.

If I were not embarking on a new career in academia, I think I would try to represent a restaurant like Da Wan Mian or Da Niang Shuijiao (the dumpling restuarant I've mentioned previously) in the United States.

-- Norty

Posted by now at July 18, 2006 01:25 PM