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Dining In Lhasa

Tourists in Lhasa will firstly check the unique Tibetan food. Tibetan main foods are Tsampa (Zan Ba), pea, horsebean, milk sediments, meats and milk products. Tibetan like eat air-dry beef, mutton. The major drinks in Tibet (Lhasa) are ghee tea, pure tea, sweet tea, fresh milk and Chang. Especially the Tsampa, ghee, tea, cow and sheep meat are reputed as "four treasures in Tibetan dining". 
Local Specialties:
Lhasa Hulless Barley (Highland Barley)
Highland barley is a kind of cereal crops. As the hull is separated from the seed, it is also named hulless barley or nakedness barley. Hulless barley has a long growing history in Tibetan Plateau-about 3500 years. Highland barley is the main material of making Tsampa with abundant nourishments and outstanding curative and health care function. It can also been brewed into highland barley wine. The hulless barley products are the staple food of Tibetan. The edibles made of hulless barley are not only the traditional Tibetan food, but also are the representation of Tibetan dining in main restaurants of Lhasa. The highland barley products become a kind of important food for serving foreign guests. 
Lhasa Tsampa (Zan Ba) 
Tsampa is one of the stable foodstuffs in Tibet. So in Lhasa, Tsampa is one of the mostly eyeable foodstuffs. Tsampa is so important to Tibetan, that Tibetan need it every day and every meals. The Tsampa is made of highland barley. It is similar to the stir-fried noodles in northern China. Stir-fried noodles in Northern China is firstly to pulverize the barley are wheat, and then after many processes to stir-fried into edible food; however Tibetan Tsampa is firstly to stir fry till well and then pulverize. The barley flour usually mixed with salty Tibetan butter tea. When you want to eat Tsampa, you need to put some butter tea at the bottom of the bowl and put some barley flour, then stir gently with the forefinger and knead with the hand. The whole cooking processes demand a highly manual dexterity. Tsampa is goluptious, crisp and sweet. Besides, it is rich in nutrition and has large heat which is suitable for allaying hunger and keeping out cold. Tibetan people also like to have Tsampa assistant with dishes, butter tea and capsicum. As the Tsampa is very simple to prepare, it is a convenient food for Tibetan, especially the herds such as sherpas, nomads and other nomadic people in Tibet. In Tibetan New Year Festival, the Tsampa plays a very important role too as it represents good luck and wishes. 
Air Dried Meats 
Air Dried Meats are the quite special Tibetan food. Dried meats prevail in Tibet and the air dried meats often refers to the beef and mutton. The air dried meat is one of the stable foodstuffs in Tibet. Air dried meats are made when at the end of a year and the temperature is below zero. Tibetan cut the yak or sheep meat into strips and hang them in shady and cool places (usually in special sheds). They let the meat strips dried by air and eat them till the next year. When eat, Tibetan will eat them dipping with pimiento juice. The taste of the dried meat is purity than the cooked meat, and is savory and crisp. Tibetan dried meat with unique taste makes people having endless aftertaste.
Tibetan Sausage 
Sausage was early from more than 1000 years a ago. It is a food created by nomad. The main method is to prime different materials into the fresh animal guts such as sheep, pig or cow. According to different materials, the sausage can be divided into several categories. The sausage filling with sheep blood called Blood Sausage; and the one that stuffed with dogmeat named Meat Sausage; sausage which is filled with flour paste and edible oil is called Four Sausage; the one mainly filled with sheep fat together with some chopped meat named Oil Sausage; sausage stuffed with chopped animal liver called Liver Sausage. When out the stuffing in to the intestines, people will put some assistant ingredients such as salt, pepper powder, chopped ginger and so on. The Tibetan sausages can be either steamed or roasted and then cut into slices to eat. Tibetan usually make this food in batches during new-year time. The Tibetan sausage taste fresh and goluptious and not oily, which is a nice cold dish. Then it can be stored for about one year. 
Tibetan Bakemeat 
Tibetan bakemeat is very popular in Tibet. The fillings of the bakemeat major are yak meat. Chopped the yak meat and then mix round with chives to make the fillings. After the flours paste is ready, people can stuff the fillings into the paste and roll into cake shape, and then deep fry the cake in pan with edible oil until it is fully cooked. Tibetan-style bakemeat is savory with fresh but not oily meat and crisp skin. There is a small tip for having bakemeat: you would better finish them before they are cold down. 
Tibetan-style Meat Baozi 
Meat Baozi (dumpling) is a kind of familiar food among Tibetan of pasturing areas. The cooking processes can be generally divided into two steps. The first step is to prepare materials and make into raw Baozi. The fillings usually are chopped mutton or beef mixed with wine and flavorings and water. Then wrap the fillings with thin flour-paste. The second step is to steaming them until cooked. It will need about 10 to 20 minutes. The Tibetan Baozi having rich juice and small size is unique in taste. The Baozi made by shaman in Tibetan fanes are especially tasty. 
Tibetan porridge is boiled by the Tibetan style oatmeal. Tibetan people beat the highland barley into flat after marinating and then dry them under the sun. When the flats are dried, the Tibetan oatmeal is well done. About cooking methods: Tibetan persons like to put the subsidiary materials such as Ginseng Fruit, chopped meat (beef or mutton), milk segment into the porridge. Boil these assistant ingredients together with the Tibetan oatmeal to cook Tibetan porridge. The skilly is the traditional food in Tibetan New Year Festival. In the morning of the first day of every New Year, all Tibetan people will eat a bowl of hot porridge. They have the oat to impetrate smooth and good luck in the new year time. 
Tibetan Bean Noodles
Tibetan bean noodles affected by Sichuan styles lean to piquancy. It is firstly thaw the starch by heating up, and then let it cool down to finalize the design. After added some salt, pimiento and other seasonings, the bean noodles is very nice. The taste of the bean noodles major is decided by the confection of the seasonings. Tibetan bean boodles are very popular among women and children. You will find these stalls in streets and lanes in Lhasa with simple Tibetan-style tables, or boards together with some age-old wooden stools. The holders of the booths almost are Tibetan women.
Tibetan Tea 
Tea is very popular in Tibet. The relationships between Tibetan tea and Tibetan people are like the relationships between fish and water. Tibetan can not live without tea. Tea can be processed into many different styles. The most popular tea in Tibet is butter tea, sweet tea and pure tea. There was no tea in Tibet Plateau originally. According to historical materials, Tibetan tea prevailed from the trade between Songtsan Gampo and Tang Dynasty. Butter tea is a beverage in Tibet with abundant nourishment. At the fastigium of the world, no matter you are sharp-set or foredone, as soon as you drink a cup of the Tibetan butter tea, you will get back power all over and become energetic in the turn of a hand. In winter, after you dinked the butter tea, you will feel warm from heat to foot. Some people even said, the Tibetan butter tea can cure the ill body. Though it is exaggerate, it embodies the wonderful function of the tea. The Tibetan butter tea can lighten highland feedback. No matter guests from faraway or familiar friends, the hosts will send you a cup of butter as soon as you enter the house. The guest needs to dip some tea with the ring finger of the right hand and lift the finger in the air to flip for three times before drinking.
Tibetan excepted drink butter tea, they all so drink pure tea and sweet tea. Sweet is to make the black tea out and put into the teapot and then add white sugar and milk into it. Pure tea is green tea served without refreshment. 
Tibetan Fresh Milk 
Tibetan milk is from the yak and goat there. Tibetan products are one of the four treasures in Tibet. As there are lots of sheep and milch cow in Tibet, there are many milk products there. As the important foods for Tibetan, its milk products are famous for fresh. The most popular milk products are yoghourts and milk sediments. Yoghurts can also be divided into two sorts; one is cheese named "Da Xue" in Tibetan and the other is "E Xue". Tibetan cheese is made of milk that has been extracted the ghee and the other one is milk without extracting. Yoghurt is rich in nutrition and easy to assimilation, so it is very suitable for old persons and children.
Tibetan Fresh Milk in Lhasa Tibetan Fresh Milk in Lhasa
Chang (Highland Barley Wine) 
Chang is brewaged by zymolytic highland barley. Chang with low degree is popular among Tibetan including the young, the old, the female and the male. It is a kind of necessary drink at festivals, marriage feats and other important occasions. Before festivals, Tibetan people will brewage plentiful of barley wine. In the year, from April to August, Lhasa people will lift the nice wine gathers together in almost every traditional or non traditional festivals and religion or non religion festivals. All the people will bring the Chang to the green grass land, putting up colorful tents, drinking, singing and dancing. That scene fully shows out the charming of Tibetan culture. The Tibetan Chang is as well a nice product for entertaining guests. In banquets, the hosts will toast the guests until they are totally drunk. 
Best Recommendation:
Tibetan traditional cuisine
One of the largest Tibetan restaurants, Crazy Yak Saloon, next door to Kirey Hotel on Beijing East Road, has unique Tibetan-style decoration and furnishings and provides Tibetan food with good reputation here. The yak meat is strongly recommended. Besides, it serves aweto chicken and aweto beef as well as some common dishes. Another feature of this restaurant lies in the Tibetan song and dance show from 19:30 to 20:30 every evening.
Another slap-up Tibetan Style Restaurant is Snow-Deity Palace Tibetan Style Restaurant located right west of the Potala Palace Plaza. It offers authentic Tibetan food, for example, freshly fried mutton chops and Tibetan steamed stuffed buns.
Tibetan Cafeteria located west of Middle Beijing Road is also a Tibetan style restaurant and offers Tibetan food such as fried mutton chops, radish stew, yak meat and potato buns.
Kagui Nongmo Sakhang, also a Tibetan-style restaurant, you could go  there with your Tibetan friends and enjoy the local food. From curried potatoes to sweet-and-sour ribs, Tibetan and Chinese dishes could be found easily. Tibetan staff are very friendly and helpful.
Pentoc Tibetan Restaurant is a good place to try homemade Tibetan food, such as momos, thugpa, shemdre, plus butter tea and chang. It is located in an alley of Beijing East Road. English Menu is helpful.
Western Style
Snowland Restaurant belonging to Snowland Hotel on Mentsikhang Road offers all kinds of food at moderate price, including western food, Tibetan food and Nepalese food. Its Nepalese food and pizza are very tasty. Chicken tikka masala, a kind of Indian food there is also delicious and popular. 
Tashi I next to Penthoc Guesthouse is still a favourite choice of many travelers though the competition is increasing day by day because of its friendly service and cheap price. It always offers a renewal of the menu, on which everything is decent. The bobis which is made up of flavored cream cheese and fried vegetables or meat is highly recommended. Besides, the staff there speak English very well and English menu is offered. 
Tashi II in the Kirey Hotel is famous for its clean and quiet environment. It offers Tibetan food including Tibetan momos, tsampa, thukpa and fried yak meat as well as spaghetti, mashed potatoes and fries. Actually its menu is the same as that of the Tashi I.  
Nam-tso Restaurant offers plentiful dishes including vegetarian lasagna, burritos and yak burgers at prices a little higher than those at Tashi I and II. A classic Lhasa meal called the chicken sizzler is recommended. It is very comfortable to sit outdoors to have your meals in the sunny sky. Menu is in English.
Muslim food
Islam Restaurant offers authentic Muslim food. It is very enjoyable to order a cup of Muslim tea and a bowl of Xinjiang noodles and watch the chefs working in the open kitchen.
Lanqing Qingzhen Restaurant is very special with the cosy Tibetan-style seating amony many Muslim restaurants in the old town. The Xiao/Da Panji Chicken in a sauce with potatoes and carrots is very tasty as one of Xinjiang Specialties, and some noodles could be put in it after the chicken is eaten up. That photos are attched in the menu is very helpful, though they are a litte different from the real things. Noodle dishes, such as chaomianpian or ganbanmian are the best choices for lunch.
Holy Land Vegetarian Restaurant offers English and picture menus. Vegetarians could try the "soy fish" or "soy chicken feet", which is not the real meat. The wooden tables and Buddhist images on the wall give the palace a simple Zen-like atmosphere.
Nepalese food
New Mandala Restaurant, from the second floor or the rooftop of which, you could get the full view of Barkhor Street, offers packaged Nepali foods such as muesli and soup mixes. Inside it, some lovely and ornate Tibetan murals come in view. Tashi restaurants in Shigatse and Tsetang also belong to the owner. English menu is provided. 
Mandala Restaurant, located on Barkhor Circuit offers a wide range of dishes from Indian curries to pizza, plus a few special-occasion Tibetan dishes and decent breakfasts. Menu in English. Besides, in summer, seat on the rooftop and have awesome views of Jokhang Temple.
Kailash Restaurant, inside the BanakShol Hotel, is run by Nepalese and has a large menu with pizza, spaghetti and Western dishes. You can lounge in the sun on its rooftop deck after a meal.
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