Chinese Hamburger: No Good, No Pay

By Mark Wiens 24 Comments
Chinese Hamburger Restaurant, Yangshuo, China
Chinese Hamburger Restaurant, Yangshuo, China

With a “No Good, No Pay” policy and a crowd of people huddled around the tent, there was no way I could pass up the opportunity to taste this version of a Chinese Hamburger.

Yangshuo, China is a hugely popular tourist destination, both for Chinese people from around the country and foreigners. The clientele waiting in line were mostly Chinese, leading me to believe that they served a delicious product, or that their return policy was just too good to pass by.

I rarely eat burgers, unless of course I am assured beforehand that it will be out of this world – Burger Hut in Nairobi, Kenya as Africa’s best burger is an example of a burger I’ll go out of my way to eat.

Chinese Burger Production
Chinese Burger Production

The crew making the Chinese Hamburgers were frantically working to handle the heavy stream of afternoon burger traffic. They worked at a brisk pace, silently playing their small part in the amalgamation process.

Hunk of Beef
Hunk of Beef

The first thing my eyes focused on was the brown seared hunk of beef resting in a plastic tub on the counter. It looked like a pure marinated tender lump of flesh just patiently waiting its turn to be sliced up and served.

There were waves of fragrant wind bring forth the always pleasing aromas of soy sauce, sesame oil, and fresh herbs that kept my nostrils alert and ready while I stood in line.

Spiced Noodles
Spiced Noodles

The exterior bread of the Chinese Hamburger was a thin cracker like pita that was cooked on the side of a clay oven.

The first ingredient that went into the pita cracker was a transparent blue-green spiced up noodle salad. It looked a little bizarre, so I was excited to see exactly how it tasted.

Chinese Hamburger, Yangshuo, China
Chinese Hamburger, Yangshuo, China

Next when a few scoops of the spicy marinated boneless beef. It was sitting in a liquid dressing of chili oil, soy sauce and fresh sesame seeds.

Chinese Hamburger Ingredients, Yangshuo, China
Chinese Hamburger Ingredients, Yangshuo, China

Lastly, she added a selection of cilantro, green onions, Chinese pickled green beans and a good sized dabble of chili sauce (as I ordered).

Yangshuo, China
Chinese Hamburger

The finished product was a lot more like a bulging Mexican taco than a traditional hamburger.

It could easily be handled in a single palm and the fillings were bursting out the top.

Inside a Chinese Hamburger
Inside a Chinese Hamburger

Though the Blacksmith Beef was a bit on the greasy side, its sauce spread all over the other ingredients and coated the bread with lip licking flavor. The meat was tender and flaky and the fusion of ingredients complimented each other precisely.

The noodles had the consistency of fresh mozzarella cheese but with a pungent toasted sesame flavor.

No Good, No Pay
Blacksmith Beef - No Good, No Pay

The Verdict of the Yangshuo Chinese Hamburger

At a price of a whopping 10 CNY (only $1.56, but that’s quite pricey for China), I was a little disappointed with the small size, but the quality of the slices of beef did make up for it.

In the end I would say that it was indeed scrumptious and a platter of them would make a wonderful plate of party hors d’oeuvres.

I didn’t make any complaints and I didn’t see anyone attempting to use the “No Good, No Pay” policy.

24 comments. I'd love to hear from you!

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  • Claire

    9 years ago

    Hmmm…..maybe they just didn’t know to term it a “slider?” Haha, but it looks pretty delicious actually!

    • Mark Wiens

      9 years ago

      Would have been cool if they had named it “Chinese Sliders!” Really delicious!

      • Jake

        9 years ago

        Hey Mark– its me from way back in Maria Gorettis in Jogja – -and then random bump into in KL bookstore, haha, u ever been to West Africa — Niger, Cameroon and the like? if so, try the meat there and report — best in the world in my humble opinion!

        • Mark Wiens

          9 years ago

          Hey Jake, thanks for the comment. I’ve never been to West Africa, it’s an area I would love to visit though in the future. Can’t wait to try the meat there. How are you, where are you living in West African these days?

  • Gerard ~ GQ trippin

    9 years ago

    You can bring that over here to the states and turn it into a successful Chinese taco truck. I can see it already. Blacksmith ‘Burgers’ to-go. That no good, no pay policy would’ve sold me too.

  • Nomadic Samuel

    9 years ago

    I probably would have turned that into an expensive meal eating 5 or more…LOL

    • Mark Wiens

      9 years ago

      I had to refrain from doing that too…and luckily I found some cheaper rice immediately following!

  • Jade Johnston – OurOyster.com

    9 years ago

    What an interesting marketing concept! And it looks delicious mmmmm Im ready for lunch

    • Mark Wiens

      9 years ago

      Thanks Jade – they are definitely business savvy with their marketing!

  • 2summers

    9 years ago

    That’s the most colorful ‘burger’ I’ve never seen. Beautifully shot and looks delicious.

  • David

    9 years ago

    Ha, I remember seeing that sign in Yangshuo, but due to the long line I decided to check it out later, but then never ended up going back. Glad I finally know what they are!

    • Mark Wiens

      9 years ago

      That was the same thing I did – saw it a few times and decided to come back later…but finally went back on my second to last day in Yangshuo! It was way too small (especially for the price) but definitely worth a sample!

  • Natalie

    9 years ago

    I would not have any qualms about eating six of them. They look scrummy.

  • Jarmo

    9 years ago

    Yeah, that looks pretty damn delicious, thou just from the photo I wouldn’t have guessed it is a burger 😉

  • Juno

    9 years ago

    Man, that looks way too good!!! I mean I like western style burgers but this is amazing! Eeeek, can’t wait!

    • Mark Wiens

      9 years ago

      Take something Western and add some Asian to it and it’s amazing!

  • Caanan @ No Vacation Required

    9 years ago

    That looks amazing. So does your site redesign. 🙂

  • 50+ and on the Run

    9 years ago

    Not eating much beef these days, but that looks pretty good!

    • Mark Wiens

      9 years ago

      They just added a few slices of beef to the sandwich and it sure was tasty!

  • Turtle

    9 years ago

    That looks delicious! You’re right – you could probably eat ten of them!! 🙂