Returned overseas Chinese opens Xi'an Japanese restaurant     Updated: 2022-05-11

After having lived in Japan for 13 years, businessman Gu Baodong now runs a Japanese restaurant under the Xi'an City Wall in Xi'an, capital of Northwest China's Shaanxi province.

Gu's ancestral home is North China's Hebei province but he was born in Xi'an.


Gu Baodong introduces some of his dishes in Xi'an. [Photo/Xi'an Daily]

In May 1992, Gu went to Japan's capital, Tokyo, to study. In his spare time, he often toiled as an hourly worker, including working in a Japanese izakaya.

An izakaya is a traditional Japanese tavern that serves alcohol and specialty dishes for people to drink and relax in their spare time, which is popular with locals and foreign tourists alike.

In 2005, Gu decided to return to China because there were better opportunities, after having worked in various industries, including mining and trading.


The exterior of Gu Baodong's izakaya in Xi'an. [Photo/Xi'an Daily]

Gu, who loves gourmet cooking and has always studied Japanese food, opened an izakaya with his friend near the South Gate of the Xi'an City Wall.

"The business was very good at that time," Gu said. He added that because he had a certain understanding of the catering culture in China and Japan, he quickly got on the right track in terms of its operation. Subsequently, for various reasons, that izakaya didn't work but he remained confident of the business model.

So, at the end of November 2017, he opened another izakaya under the Xi'an City Wall. "If it weren't for the COVID-19 pandemic, the business in our izakaya would be quite hot," he said.

The dishes in Gu's izakaya are beautiful in appearance and fresh in taste, and have won a lot of repeat customers.

"Xi'an is an international metropolis and many foreigners live here," Gu said.

"Overseas restaurants are blooming in Xi'an, which is proof. So, as Xi'an develops more and more, our izakaya will also get better and better. I have confidence," he added.