Street Food Guomao – and street ladies

Having moved to the downtown Shenzhen area of Guomao I was excited to see what the street food Guomao scene was. Well it turns out that not only is it good, but that there are also ladies practicing the worlds oldest profession – quite literally “on the streets”.

We discovered this after renting an office in Guomao for Young Pioneer Tours and going for a food based explore. And Shenzhen did not disappoint, with the food being top notch and the atmosphere being electric.

Street Restaurants in Guomao

Guomao is like a standard Shenzhen or even Guangdong area in that people truly love food. This means that pretty much half the stores on a street are food based, be that a shop, top end restaurant, restaurant street food, or traditional street food. The other half are salons.

There is also a very Shenzhen thing in that you have regular type high streets, bit with dodgy grimy back alleys. These have people cooking to order, people selling all manor of stuff, as well as massages for the discerning gentleman. It was here in fact, or rather on the peripheries that we were approached about getting lady of the night.

Pictures where shown and we were told we could go to an apartment for the sum of 400 RMB, or around $55. We of course gracefully declined said offer.

The Street Food Guomao scene

For the street food Guomao scene I will ignore the higher end restaurants and concentrate on stuff either on the street, or at least aiming for that vibe.

These were largely dominated by BBQ, or Kou Rou, as well as seafood BBQ. The former of these has traditional meat on stick joints on the street, which serve pump through beer and BBQ in super load venues. This is about as Chinese street food as you get and can be enjoyed throughout the country from Xian to Guangzhou.

On the restaurant scene they also what are termed Dong Bei, or north-east BBQ restaurants. These are kind of themed, but serve that most classic of Chinese BBQ, again with Chinese beer that tastes a bit like water. Best among these that we found was the Ancient BBQ Restaurant. Not reinventing the wheel, but delivering what we want from Guomao street food.

On the seafood front what was on offer looked truly epic and compared to neighboring Hong Kong was a fraction of the price. Alas I did not get a chance to try this in full yet, but I most certainly will.

Other restaurants of note were serving general Chinese cuisine, as well as a lot selling Guangdong fare, a great thing as this is my favorite form of Chinese food.

Takeaway street food Guomao

Most popular though and indeed what truly feeds the masses were the non-Franchise fast food joints of Shenzhen, as well as the takeaway street food. These also epitomize the mut like nature of the city with there quite literally being food from everywhere.

This included Xian food like Rou Jia Mo, takeaway BBQ in the fashion of Xinjiang or the North-East, as well as pretty much everything else that China has to offer. What got me on this night though was noodles. Guangdong quite simply does the best fried noodles and there are restaurants that pretty much take this and this alone seriously.

We thus found ourselves in a place that offered no less than 15 soupless noodle dishes that were either fried, or at least dry. What we got was not exactly what we expected, with it being more like spaghetti than your average noodle, but it was exciting to simply try the unknown.

I am sure I will discover more about street food Guomao scene, but for now I can certainly say that it has not disappointed.