Stepping inside the Dolma La Tibetan restaurant, one is immediately taken by the richly coloured wooden walls and furniture. I spied the stairs leading up to the second floor dining area and couldn’t resist climbing them to discover what lay above me. Upstairs the natural light filters in through the wooden window frames to illuminate the Tibetan artwork which adorns the walls. While here, I sampled the Amdo Noodle with Yak Meat, and thoroughly enjoyed it to the last morsel.
The Dolma La was founded in 2015 and is run by two young and energetic Tibetan men who like taking risks and tackling challenges head on. Wongxur and Renqing both come from nomadic tribes in North East Tibet, so they decided to introduce the nomadic food to the big city. They wanted to provide the people of Chengdu with healthy and organic Tibetan food at reasonable prices, so Dolma La was born.
On the first floor you will find the bathroom, front desk, kitchen, and about half of the tables accompanied by quaint wooden chairs. However, if you climb the steep staircase to the second floor you will find the other half of the dining area is fit with couches perfect for a relaxing over a lazy meal. There are also two private rooms on the second floor if you happen to have a larger group.
This is a cozy restaurant with a small, friendly set of staff. One of the staff in particular speaks fluent English, so the Dolma La has offered their space to be used every Tuesday night as an English corner. This gives the locals of Chengdu the opportunity to sit with ex-pats, and other English speakers who wish to volunteer their time, to practice their language skills, and no doubt, to exchange a little culture as well.
If you are out exploring Chengdu in the evening, every night at around 10:00pm Dolma La has live performances of traditional Tibetan music. Guests often use this time as a chance to sample the flavors of Tibetan wine and beer as they enjoy music steeped in a deep cultural history.
Address: Rome Holiday Square. Gaosheng Bridge, East Road. North Station. B2-305.