I haven't found a single Starbucks in Luoyang as of 2011 but the closest to it is SPR Coffee, a chain that offers a wide variety of coffee, service in English, and cozy atmosphere. I have seen a few caucasian business travellers there as well.
Forget about the travel warning saying yuo will almost die if you buy off the street...I guess i have a triple-coated stomach because i went as far as buying the meat sticks and the baked bananas from street vendors. Here's a pic of a back alley' restaurants that i discovered just following people at lunch time. For less than 2$ you get more food than you can eat. Only thing is, if it rains like it did the day I took that picture, you better not be in a rush to go home...!
En los puestos de las calles puedes ver y luego probar los noodles que hacen delante de ti y luego los cuecen
Es todo un arte
In the the streets stalls you may see, and then try the noodles that are made in front of you and then boiled
It's an art
Decidimos darnos un homenaje y tomarnos un Pato laqueado .
El restaurante está muy bien , con muy buen servicio y un pato sensacional
We decided to give a tribute to us and take a Roast Duck .
The restaurant is very good, with very good service and a sensational duck
There are lots of popular and apparently good restaurants in the center of Luoyang. Although the dinning rooms on street level were full they often have second floor dinning rooms available. So when you see a good looking place that looks full go in anyway. Just because these look like and are higher class places do not expect menus in pinying or even menus with pictures.
As Elyse, VT Chinese member extraordinaire, discovered on her trip to Luoyan experiencing the famous "water meal" of Luoyang can be a challenge for a single traveler even if they speak Chinese. It seemed to me that the restaurants I entered were as disconcerted by the fact that I was a single dinner, as by the fact that I could not communicate effectively in Chinese.
People both employees and guests were very friendly and helpful. In contrast to the sometimes impersonal, almost sullen service I experienced in Beijing, this was great dining even though I did not really know what I ordered.
Favorite Dish: I think my favorite dishes were vegetarian, but I certainly could not give any names. Everything was so fresh and tasty and generally so much more to my taste than Chinese food I have eaten in the USA. (Being originally from the San Francisco area I thought I knew Chinese food.)
This restaurant serves Shanghai style food, and they do it good. :-) The waitresses are really friendly and fast. We were in a separate room, but these rooms are not totally separated from the rest of the restaurant, so you still get the atmosphere.
Another place where you can have coffee. They had a lot of different coffees on the menu, but it turned out that they only had a couple of them in stock. But the one we drank was good, and the waitresses were really friendly. It was quite expensive though. We paid 38 yuan (almost 4 euro) for a cup.
Dio Coffee is not really special actually. When we were there (a Sunday morning) the place was almost empty, and the service was quite lame. BUT: they have coffee, so I didn’t care about anything else. Later we went to Beverly coffee, which is very close, and found out that Dio is not as nice as Beverly.
(Funny thing: in the top of the menu it said Belgium coffee, but the choices were e.g. Colombian and Brazilian coffee. Didn’t quite understand this.)
If you want to have a quick lunch, the restaurant in the New Jianlong Hotel is a good place to go. We had a couple of small dishes and each a big bowl of noodles, and paid 68 yuan in total for 5 persons.
We were invited here in 2004 by friends (so I have no clue about the price), and it was a phantastic restaurant experience. Already when we entered, I got a good feeling, being greeted in a very friendly way by the entire staff. The room we were in was classy and our waitress did her job 100% with style, in a way I had never experienced in any other country. And of course the restaurant was more than presentation alone. The food was really delicious. We had different dishes, but I remember the salmon well. First the waitress came to show us the fish, still alive, in a plastic bag, and a couple of minutes later it was presented to us, dead of course, on top of a nice dragon ice sculpture. It tasted marvelous.
This was the second place in Luoyang where we went to eat hotpot, but this one was a bit of a bummer. Our waiter had no idea what he was doing, but since I don’t expect waiters to do everything for me, I didn’t mind. Worse however was that the food wasn’t good. The hotpot soups had no taste at all, and also the food seemed like it was robbed of all its taste. At first I thought it was me having a bad evening, but the others had the same feeling as I had.
In this restaurant you can only eat hot pot. Each person at the table has his or her own pot, and you just throw in what you want. Very pleasant way to eat, and they have good airconditioning in the rooms, so it doesn’t get too hot. We paid about 200 yuan for 6 persons, and we had four big plates of meat, a plate of duck blood slices and different plates of vegetables in total.
Han Ji is, according to my brother-in-law, one of the best two restaurants in Luoyang. I didn’t try all the restaurants in the city, but I believe him. The food was excellent, and the service was 100% ok and discrete. The restaurant doesn’t have a big hall, but only 33 separate rooms. Each room has place for 1 table, and has its own toilet room. Attached to each room is a small kitchen, where the waitresses can do their work. Unlike in some other restaurants, these kitchens were very clean.
Favorite Dish: Dou sha zhi ma bing, has the same taste as Flemish ‘oliebollen’.
This to me is a restaurant in decay. I’m sure it was excellent 5 years ago, but now it’s just surviving on its standing. Eating here was a big disappointment, because when we came in my expectations were high. The place has a big hall with acqauriums filled with fish, turtles, small sharks and even seals. The first thing that took my appetite away was that they also had two deer in a cage of maybe 2 by 3. And the second thing was that we could chose our food like in a supermarket, lots a plates next to eachother with the food on it. None of these looked very appetising.
One of the things we ordered was sliced salmon, but when they brought it to us it appeared to come right from the freezer. We asked if they didn’t have fresh salmon; they had and it was the same price as the frozen one but no one had bothered to ask if we wanted fresh salmon. After we sent the frozen salmon back we had to wait for more than half an hour to get the new salmon, so all our other dishes were finished already.
Our waitress was friendly and kind but she looked like she was sick of apologising for the mistakes of others.
Kai Xuan Men (Triumphal Arc) is a fine restaurant, with good food. We went to eat there with 9 people (in a separate room), and paid 540 yuan (= 54 euro). I didn’t choose the food, so I don’t know the names of the dishes, but they were all good. As it was my sister-in-law’s birthday the restaurant manager came in with a huge apple, which she passed around. We all had to touch it, and this meant luck for my sister-in-law. My family-in-law really seemed to appreciate this.
Favorite Dish: Yi Pin Dan Su, it looks like gingerbread but it’s hard. It tastes like there’s coconut in, but the waitress said it’s only made of flour and eggs.