2021-12-27 回复奖励 26907

Why do most of the foreigners who visit for the first China think that Chinese food is terrible?


Norman Owen, 30 years teaching about Asian history at the university level.
They don’t. Not “most of” them.
We lived in Hong Kong for many years, and not only traveled into (the rest of) China a few times, but were a regular stop for friends of ours who were on their way into or out of China for tourism (or business).
They ALL liked most Chinese food. I don’t remember ANY of them saying that Chinese food was “terrible.” They said it was different and - as I mentioned - they liked some of it better than others.


Collin Spears, Lived in China for 2.5 years in two different provinces.
I do not think it is “most foreigners”.
Here is what I think. I’m sure the person who wrote this is Chinese, and when they say “foreigners” they mean WHITE PEOPLE.
Most Chinese food in the West, historically, has been some bastardized Cantonese food, that was often made by peasants.
Sometimes they even made up food that did not exist in China to suit local tastes, or they radically changed the food…such as
Egg Foo Young (Western Version)
Chinese Version
General Tsos Chicken (not something normally eaten in China)
So many Westerns think they grew up eating Chinese food, but when they come to China they find out that Chinese food can be all of this:
Chinese food is far more diverse than most Westerns imagine, and some of the food is very unusual in regard to taste and ingredients, from a Western perspective.
Obviously, some people don’t like things they are not used to or do not expect.

Hell, my mother-in-law is Chinese, pure Chinese, born in China, and she won’t eat Chinese food that is not Cantonese. LOL She thinks it is too heavy or oily. Only Cantonese is properly 清淡菜 (light)。
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JT Sange
I think there is a similar misunderstanding about Indian restaurants too. A large number of dishes you get in the US are far from authentic food you will get in India. As the joke goes - If an Indian engineer gets laid off from his job, he starts an Indian restaurant.


David Yu
Logistic matters, the earlier Chinese immigrant can’t get their hands on a lot local ingredient from China or Locally source in USA.
biscuit and cheese in china is terrible for a lot of the same logistic reasons.

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Collin Spears
Uhm I’m not sure that is true. It depends on where you live in America. In any major urban area in the coastal areas, you can get most Chinese food items. I know my wife routinely buys them and tells my mother-in-law not to bring things from HK.
However in more inland areas, rural, without a Chinese population, yeah it is very hard.
I would also say that making high end Chinese food is not really the goal. Unlike Korean and Japanese food, most Americans (due to history) don’t see Chinese food as “high end”, they see it as “fast food” so the margins are quite small for the restaurant. Why put in a lot of expensive imported ingredients? It raises cost? Also the average American doesn’t know what is missed, and doesn’t care.


Kevin Doucet
Chinese food is good enough, but the meat has too many bones.


Jamie Wang
whether the bone could be an issue really depends on how the meat got cooked.
Plus, we Chinese believe that the meat sticking to the bones taste better.


Vincent Tang
Hahahaha even many Chinese people don''t like the bones in meat (me included ). It''s just annoying.


Mike Digkas
Dear Ron, I live in China for 8 years now and I have met countless foreigners. Most of them come into the fast conclusion that Chinese food is terrible and Chinese food is just dumplings and noodles. This behavior amazes me because I deem Chinese food as the best in the world. I am always telling them that if you come for the first time in China and you don’t have Chinese friends with you to order for you is very challenging and they should not make fast conclusions as I guarantee that nothing is superior than Chinese food.