We pause our Quest for the best Chinese restaurant on Long Island and New York City, just briefly, to tell you what is unequivocally the LARGEST Chinese restaurant in the world. These are hard, cold, empirical facts. The Largest is easy to measure. The Best? THAT is the story of our Quest!
Completed in 2004, West Lake Restaurant (Chinese: 西湖楼, aka Xihulou) is a restaurant in Changsha, capital of the central Chinese province of Hunan, and one of the largest restaurants in the world. With its 5,000 seats, it is considered the largest restaurant in China and in Asia, according to an entry in the Guinness Book of World Records for being the biggest Chinese restaurant in the world. The restaurant’s design is modeled after the Forbidden City in Beijing.
The West Lake has five kitchens utilizing the skills of more than 300 chefs among its more than 1,000 employees. The restaurant mainly offers traditional Chinese dishes of Hunan cuisine and Cantonese cuisine. The restaurant employs a thousand people, including 300 chefs in five kitchens. The kitchens use food in amazing quantities. Approximately 700 chickens and 2,600 pounds of pork, three tons of fish, a ton of chili peppers, and 200 live snakes each and every week are used.
In 2000, the Xihulou restaurant was opened in the city of Liuyang, in early 2003, the construction of the new dining facility started in Changsha. After more than a year of construction, the new West Lake Restaurant opened in October 2004.
The restaurant complex is located 20 minutes from Changsha Huanghua International Airport, and covers an area of over 14 acres. The numerous buildings were constructed in the traditional Chinese architectural style. The entire complex covers four different areas:
- Area A includes 70 large and small rooms, together with a performance hall, where daily shows take place.
- Area B comprises ten luxury private rooms in the style of Imperial Palaces.
- Area C has nine private luxury rooms, and
- Area D is a “Snack Food Street”.
But, does being the largest equate to being the BEST Chinese restaurant in the world? First, let us conquer Long Island and New York City, and then WE will find you the best Chinese restaurant in the WORLD!
What’s your favorite Chinese restaurant?
Humbly submitted for your consumption,
—Mee Magnum (“Chop! Chop!”)