Lisa and Georgie's Food Review: Chongqing

Unfortunately this is quite a short one as we didn’t stumble across any streets that sold a lot of the local food. However we did try the best we could to eat Chongqing cuisine!

To give you an idea of what we mean by our ratings:

0 out of 10 – we will never eat again

5 out of 10 – average snack that we’d eat if it was the lesser of two evils

8 out of 10 – really good and delicious

10 out of 10 – “I’m just going to go ahead and buy five, that’s not crazy right?”


味道 – flavour

小吃 – it’s quality as a snack, is it a snack we’d have again?

外貌 – aesthetics (appearance)

菜 – it’s quality as a dish, would we have it for dinner again?

凉糕 - Chongqing
凉糕 – Chongqing

凉糕 – lianggao

It is a plain jelly surrounded in honey or a brown sugar sauce. We can’t tell what the jelly itself is made out of. It’s easy to eat and resembles a crême caramel but hasn’t got the custard texture, because it is firmer than crême caramel. It looked great – a perfect white dome surrounded by a sea of honey syrup. Overall, it was a good dessert, I especially liked the honey syrup.

7 out of 10 小吃

7 out of 10 味道

8 out of 10 外貌

糍粑 – ciba

This is like the baba but the pancake is made from cooked rice that has been flattened into dough than using bread or pastry. i chose the salty one with pork and spring onion. As it was made of rice the dough was thick and chewy. There wasn’t a good filling to dough ratio so it was quite bland. However the parts with prok were quite tasty. In comparison to the other pancakes we’ve had, the texture nor taste were as good.

3 out of 10 小吃

3 out of 10 味道

5 out of 10 外貌

凉糕 - Chongqing
凉糕 – Chongqing

麻花 – mahua 

This pastry is twisted, fried and covered in various condiments, either five spice, chilli powder etc. Every store normally has a long queue of people flowing from it so our expectations were high. However we think it’s a rather unappetising snack. The texture is like shortcrust pastry but we found it oily rather than buttery and rather dry. As it is fried it is quite crunchy which would be good if the flavour was better. The appearance is deceiving because it does look appealing with a even golden outside. Overall, nice to try but there are definitely so many better things to snack on.

2 out of 10 小吃

1 out of 10 味道

5 out of 10 外貌

重庆小面 – chongqing xiaomian

Georgie could feel the spice from looking at them so it’s safe to say she didn’t eat any… So Lisa… It is made with egg noodles, Chinese broccoli and spicy soup. It is 麻辣 ‘mala’ flavour which means numbingly hot and spicy. First few bits were tolerable but then as Lisa continued the spice becomes dominant. It leaves an aftertaste that is quite bitter and just feeling like your mouth is on fire. The worst of all is that the vegetables soak up a lot of the chilli oil, and because Lisa took her time eating it, the noodles and vegetables went a little too soft for her liking. It is a basic dish as it only consists of noodles, vegetables and soup. Overall, if you want to give yourself a ‘spice’ challenge, this is the delicious dish to eat.

6 out of 10 菜

6 out of 10 味道

7 out of 10 外貌

抄手 - Chongqing
抄手 – Chongqing

抄手 – chaoshou

This a is dumplings dish, it’s name originates from its appearance of looking like a dragons paw. It’s different from a common dumpling, resembling more of a wonton, with thin outer layer of dough with only a small amount of filling in the middle. This is traditionally served in chilli oil. We ordered one of each, one spicy: 麻辣抄手 and one normal: 过桥抄手 (‘over the bridge’). Both sets of dumplings were delicious. The dumplings themselves well made, the dough the right consistency, the filling was well seasoned. The 过桥 had less complex flavours yet was a tasty contrast to the 麻辣. There was a lot of chilli oil served with the spicy one and as the dough does soak it up, it can be quite hot in the tongue! (Lisa was hardly fazed….) The 过桥抄手 could easily be a staple dish whereas the spicier version only needs to knock out socks off every now and again.. We agreed that both dishes were delicious because they weren’t dense, small enough to eat in one go and not an effort to chew! It is also an option to not have soup and instead dip the dumplings in vinegar or soy sauce. These are very good qualities for dumplings. One of Lisa’s favourite Sichuan dishes during our time in that province. Georgie also would eat many, many more…

9 out of 10 菜

(过桥) 9 out of 10 味道

(麻辣) 8 out of 10 味道

8 out of 10 外貌

酸辣粉 – suanlafen

Lisa has had this spicy noodle soup dish in two places. As always, different places make them to a different standard. The first place used rice noodles that are white and thin, the second used glass noodles. Lisa preferred the glass noodles because as they seem to soak up the taste of the soup. This may be because the soup in the second dish has a lot more depth and flavour to it than the first. So it makes sense that the second is also spicier. Lisa was very happy that the second place offered free soybean milk to counter the strength of the spice. The noodles are also served with green vegetables and fried soybeans. The beans were better in the first dish as they were a lot crunchier, making the texture more interesting. Overall, it’s a dish that’ll test your tastebuds but it very delicious to eat. The dish in the second place was the winner. With that, Georgie has come to the conclusion that the backstreet places in China make the best authentic food.

7 out of 10 菜

7 out of 10 味道

8 out of 10 外貌

And that’s Chongqing folks!