Friday, August 7, 2009

The Chicken Soup Shop

Summer colds are the worst, especially when you end up being housebound during the nicest weather the city's had all year. The only food that appeals is basic comfort food, like chicken soup. I love to eat Crossing the Bridge Noodles when I have a cold. The newly discovered Qionglai Noodles in Soup joint is serving me well too.

On Xiaonan Street is a fairly new operation called 鸡汤铺子 - the Chicken Soup Shop. It's done up on the inside and outside in typical Chinese nouveau rustic - tiles, wood tables and benches, wood window lattices - to pleasant effect. The menu is presented in attractive vertical calligraphy, and the main attraction is the chicken soup set meals. You select a type of chicken soup made with things like mushrooms, mountain yam or ginkgoes, and then add a couple of side dishes. I accepted the server's suggestions and ended up with a bowl of chicken soup with ginkgoes, some plain boiled cabbage and tofu, a bowl of rice and corn, some preserved beans, and a little bowl of spicy vinegar and oil (not shown) to use as a dip for the cabbage and tofu.

The soup was pure chicken, not even so much as salted, though there are cellars on the tables. (Salt improves it immensely.) The promotional material clearly shows a rooster comb and a foot nestled in the bowl of soup. Mine was lacking these treats, but they may turn up. This food is definitely more for health than pleasure, but sometimes that is exactly what you want.

Storefront. Look for two birdcages and a blue banner:

Address: 青羊区小南街97号 Southwest of Renmin Park

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