Shiguoyu is a small, authentic Chinese restaurant in the China Cluster of International City, Dubai’s unofficial China Town. Located beside Mystic India at the base of Building C15, the restaurant is handsomely decorated compared with some of the low budget dives we sometimes come across in search of that hidden gem. Like many of the restaurants in the area, Shiguoyu’s menu is in Chinese only. Thankfully there are pictures, and a sweet Filipina who speaks English.
There is only one reason to visit this tiny eatery – Stone Pot Fish or Shi Guo Yu as it’s known in Chinese. No rocket science here – you get a stone (or cast iron) hot pot full of fragrant stock, herbs, mushrooms and a delicately cooked pieces of fish (including head and tail). Choose from normal or spicy (same as with hot pot) but note, the taste of this stone pot is totally different to the pungent hot pots we get out here. I found the broth of the stone pot quite oily but was told the oil is actually from the fish.
This is a delightful dish to share with friends. A standard pot costs just Dhs98 and is easily good for three hungry people. Just to try something else from the menu, we also ordered the fried noodles with green vegetables which I also found really oily and surprisingly under cooked (this was the Chinese chef and not from any fish). Stick to the stone pot fish.
Our sweet Filipina waitress made sure we were well looked after, checking on our table every couple of minutes. Come to think of it, even the Chinese manager came to our table looking to see how we were doing. He got a thumbs up from me. So, if you’re in the mood to try something different or simply want to expand your culinary experience then this little peach of a restaurant is definitely for you. If, however, you’re looking for Desi-Chinese or some Kung Pao / Broccoli Oyster / Chow Mein, then I suggest you consider other options.
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Xerxes physically dines at, or orders from, each and every venue he reviews. He pays in full for whatever he and his companions eat, drink, take away or occasionally throw at each other. Xerxes accepts no money, gifts, discounts or free meals in return for reviews or favouritism. What you have read was NOT influenced in any way by the venue. Join me on Instagram @ravenousxerxes or email me on firstname.lastname@example.org.