Yangda, 扬大, is one of few authentic Chinese restaurants in the Baden-Württemberg region. There are three locations in Karlsruhe to choose from, and one in Heidelberg. The first restaurant opened along Kaiserstraße, the main pedestrian shopping boulevard in Karlsruhe, on the upper floor of retail shops. A narrow staircase leads you upstairs to a cosy dining area which was renovated May-June 2018. They now serve Xinjiang cuisine at Kaiserstraße. The two other restaurants located on Passagehof and Ettlinger Allee focus on other Chinese regional specialties.
Yangda Kaiserstraße reopened early July 2018 with a new menu featuring almost exclusively specialties from Xinjiang, an autonomous region located in China’s remote northwest. The region borders Mongolia, Russia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Afghanistan and India. The Turkic-speaking Muslim ethnic group Uyghur makes up almost half of the population, so Xinjiang cuisine is also referred to as Uyghur cuisine.
We visited during opening week. The head chef, Osman, explained that they will be expanding their menu in the coming weeks to include more Xinjiang specialties. Nevertheless, we still got to try several signature lamb dishes and different interpretations of Chinese classics.
Here are a few must-trys: “Pintoza Salad” (a refreshing cold rice vermicelli salad), stir-fried “Shanghai Qing” (Uyghur-style stir-fry), “Sig Kawap” (lamb kebab), “Kizartilmis kuzu eti” (cumin lamb) and “Laghman” (freshly-made hand-pulled noodles).
If you are a fan of crispy duck, be sure to try it on its own, served without a sauce which would only mask the amazing crunch.
Yangda (Xinjiang), Karlsruhe: The Verdict
You can be rest assured that Xinjiang fare served at Yangda is as authentic as can be, prepared by Uyghur chefs. Every dish we sampled is a delicious fusion of Middle Eastern, Central Asian and Chinese flavors. We will certainly be back to try more dishes from the extended menu.
Prices are reasonable and the portions are generous. No worries if you can’t finish everything you order – ask for a to-go box to take your leftovers home in.
Remember to have ample cash on you because the restaurant does not have facilities to accept payment by debit/credit cards. Be sure to call ahead to reserve a table, or be prepared to wait in line for one.
Yangda, Kaiserstraße 114, 76133 Karlsruhe
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