Sichuan, Shaanxi Specialties & House-made Noodles Star at Fatman Kitchen

Shaanxi cuisine is making a proper debut at Fatman Kitchen.

Last modified on January 10th, 2019 at 2:41 pm

Pan Fried Lamb with Cumin, Xian Oil Splashing Noodle, Cucumber with Garlic Sauce, and Tender Beef with Vegetable in Chili Sauce at Fatman Kitchen (Credit: Jackie Tran)

Chinese food is still growing in an exciting direction in Tucson. With exceptional Hunan, Sichuan, and Guangdong specialty restaurants sprouting over the past year, Shaanxi cuisine is making a proper debut at Fatman Kitchen.

The restaurant at 2610 N. First Ave. previously housed Chinese restaurant Impress Hot Pot.

Fatman Kitchen owner Rosey He moved to Tucson a few months ago from Huntington Beach, California. The restaurant features one chef specializing in Sichuan cuisine and one chef specializing in Shaanxi cuisine.

Shaanxi, a northern province in China (not to be confused with its neighbor Shanxi), is known for its use of mutton, lamb, pork, and savory flavors.

Interior at Fatman Kitchen (Credit: Jackie Tran)

Interior at Fatman Kitchen (Credit: Jackie Tran)

The restaurant’s interior still features some of the same decor as Impress, along with the hot pot tables. The walls are now painted teal and green, providing a slightly fresher look.

While hot pot isn’t on the menu right now, it will eventually make its way on, Rosey said. Don’t worry about it anyways, since the house-made noodles are the star.

Fatman Kitchen Menu Highlights

  • Spicy Lamb Noodle Soup ($12.99)
  • Qishan Mixed Vegetable & Meat Soup ($9.99)
  • Xian Oil Splashing Noodle ($9.99)
  • Xian Pita Bread Soaked in Lamb Soup ($12.99)
  • Cucumber with Garlic Sauce ($9.99)
  • Chicken Platter with Noodle in Brown Sauce ($19.99)
  • Pan Fried Lamb with Cumin ($15.99)
  • Griddle Cooked Chicken Wings ($15.99)
Xian Oil Splashing Noodle at Fatman Kitchen (Credit: Jackie Tran)

Xian Oil Splashing Noodle at Fatman Kitchen (Credit: Jackie Tran)

For the star dish, you can’t get anywhere else in town, order the Xian Oil Splashing Noodle. The hand-stretched wide noodles resemble pappardelle pasta, but stretchier and sometimes two feet long. Mix it up when you receive it to ensure the chili oil, raw garlic, scallions, and bean sprouts get evenly dispersed. Season to taste with the table-side jar of Chinese black vinegar if you wish.

If you want something on the Sichuan side, order the Pan Fried Lamb with Cumin. With a generous amount of peppers, it’s one of the spicier renditions in town. Furthermore, the portion of lamb is generous.

Cucumber with Garlic Sauce at Fatman Kitchen (Credit: Jackie Tran)

Cucumber with Garlic Sauce at Fatman Kitchen (Credit: Jackie Tran)

To cool off between all these spicy dishes, make sure to order Cucumber with Garlic Sauce; but skip the chili peppers to save your tongue.

Be aware that dishes come out as they are finished, which may not be the sequence they were ordered. Both times we visited, it was only Rosey serving tables. However, she’s friendly, helpful, and easy to communicate with.

Fatman Kitchen is located at 2610 N. First Ave. For more information, call (520) 882-3059.

Jackie is a food writer and photographer native to Tucson. He loves corgis and still thinks rickrolling is funny. If you'd like to stalk him, visit jackietran.com.
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