Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Dali 大理: Our first ancient town

Survived the 5 hours bus journey from Kunming to Dali and took a cab (40 yuan, 40 minutes) to the ancient town of Dali. Found our beloved hotel, Sam's Hotel which is a stone throw away from the ancient city gates.
One of Dali's ancient gates
We wasted no time getting food as the lions were getting restless. Scouting around for food, we found quite a variety of food.

A roadside stall selling noodles
One of their local dishes, noodles with light sauce and some meat and vegetables. The interesting part is that the noodles are only carved out of the yellow cake whenever it is being ordered.

Pastry stall, Dali style! 
Drawn by the variety of colours and smell, we stopped by this pastry stall. Interestingly, we just choose whatever we want and they weight it and charge us. However, the pastries look good but requires an acquired taste to enjoy it.

Finally, alcohol at foreigner street, Dali's version of Holland Village, quaint and filled with character. However, Dali's beer does not have so much a character. The 雪花beer is so light that it is a lady's drink. I ended up drinking Beerlao, Lao's national beer instead.
Crossing bridge noodles, 过桥面
A specialty of Yunnan, the crossing bridge noodles. The bowl and soup are very hot and you just place the noodles and ingredients into the soup and start eating. The story behind this is that a young scholar was studying and his wife needs to bring him dinner everyday. But she noticed that her food always gets cold whenever she reached her husband. So she thought of this concept of making the soup and bowl very hot and cover the soup in a thick layer of oil and bring the raw ingredients over to her husband. This way her husband can enjoy a hot meal every time.

As with all women, the meal must end off with a dessert, we passed by this little cafe which is operated by handicapped people. (My father in grace would love this cafe) The cheese cake was very good but the Yunnan coffee was so so, a bit more to the acidic side. Maybe I have been pampered by very good coffee. here in Singapore! 

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