|Noodles With Sizzling Oil (You po che mian)|
Last week Terra Corra Warrior swelled the ranks of restaurants in San Francisco promising Xi'an/Shaanxi food to three in number when it opened without fanfare in the space that used to be Kama Izakaya on Judah Street and 31st Avenue. I visited Terra Cotta Warrior today, and based on my first impressions, it may be the best option for experiencing the food from that region in SF yet.
I ordered my favorite benchmark pair of Xi'an specialties, you po che mian ("Noodles with sizzling oil" on the menu) and a cumin lamb roujiamo ("burger"). The roujiamo lamb filling was more intensely cumin-y but less peppery than the version at Xi An Gourmet, and there was less of it; however, the burger was a buck-and-a-half cheaper at Terra Cotta, and just about the right size for a side bite to a big bowl of noodles. The flatbread "bun" was softer than Xi An Gourmet's, and did a better job of absorbing the juices from the filling.
I brought home a copy of the menu and am making a bucket list for many repeat visits. Perhaps Terra Cotta Warrior will make me forget Xi'an Famous Foods once and for all.
Where slurped: Terra Cotta Warrior, 2555 Judah St. at 31st Ave., San Francisco