comfort food, Guiyang

comfort food, Guiyang     see larger image at:

Best western restaurants in Guiyang :

1. Grandma’s Kitchen
2. Kempinski Buffet
3. Sheraton Hotel
4. Ramada’s Aroma Cafe
5. Highlands Coffee

(from )
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Grandma’s Kitchen 祖母的厨房,B-level,108 Zhonghua Middle Rd

Highlands Coffee,, contact: Chris DeLong,

Brother John’s Pizzeria & Cafe 约翰兄弟披萨餐厅, (0851) 363 6080, 137 6517 7352, John Jiang Bo 江波,, address: Qiaotou, Pingqiao, Huaxi District, Guiyang 贵阳市花溪区平桥桥头

good list of Guiyang’s
Western-style restaurants:

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other foreign restaurant-related & Chinese restaurant chains, not necessarily in Guiyang:

KFC vs. KFG, also 啃他鸡  “ken ta ji” (in the sign at left  in traditional characters) – rhymes with “ken de ji” 肯德基, the Chinese name of KFC (Kentucky Fried Chicken, Kentucky the state is 肯塔基州 “ken ta ji zhou”), and means ‘Eat (knaw on) his chicken’

McDonald’s 麦当劳,KFC 肯德基 ,Pizza Hut 必胜客 = 麦基客   – Chinese creativity


KFC 肯德基 look-a-likes in China:FBC, KFG, KLG, MFC

But that’s not the only fake KFC in China…

Here are four of the many others — FBC, KFG, KLG and MFC. Basically, they just threw any combo of three English letters at the wall and chose what stuck. It’s like when American teenagers get random Chinese character tattoos.

from “11 Ridiculous Fast Food Chain Ripoffs In China”
January 24, 2012 , by Sam Greenspan ,

Starbucks Coffee vs. “Star Fucks Coffe” (sic) – Chinese creativity

Starbucks Coffee vs. “Bucksstar Coffee”  – Chinese creativity

McDonald’s vs. McDuck / Mak Dak – Chinese creativity

McDonalds vs. “McMcDnoald’s” (sic) – Three arches ! – Chinese creativity

McDonalds 麦当劳 vs. Michael Alone 麦当家 with upside down (McDonald’s Golden Arches) – Chinese creativity

Back in October, this KFC ripoff in Beijing made itself an “OFC,” for “Obama Fried Chicken.” Probably not the best move when you’re infringing on major international copyrights. This drew enough attention that they ended up changing their name to “UFO.” Still using KFC colors, fonts and styles, still ripping off their menu — but now they’re taunting aliens instead of the U.S. The Vegas line would be *tight* on which one of those will attack China first.  (from “11 Ridiculous Fast Food Chain Ripoffs In China”January 24, 2012 , by Sam Greenspan )

KFC vs. DFC – Dainty Fried Chicken – Chinese creativity

KFC vs. KGC – Chinese creativity

KFC 肯德基 vs. Ji‘a’po 吉阿婆 麻辣烫- Chinese creativity

KFC 肯德基 vs. FNC 芙蓉基 – Chinese creativity

KFC 肯德基 vs. MFC 麦肯基 – Chinese creativity

KFC 肯德基 vs. CBC 佳佳基 – Chinese creativity

KFC’s Col. Sanders vs. Ronald Kernel Sanders – Chinese creativity

McDonald’s 麦当劳,KFC 肯德基 = Maikenji 麦肯基

Pizza Hut vs. “Pizza Huh” (sic) – Chinese creativity

Pizza Hut  必胜客 vs. 必胜比萨站 – Chinese creativity


McDonald’s 麦当劳 vs. 麦德堡 – Chinese creativity

McDonald’s 麦当劳 vs. Mike 麦克- Chinese creativity

McDonald’s 麦当劳 vs. Mao Ji 汉堡 – Chinese creativity

McDonald’s vs. Mini Dog (正宗美国热狗, transl. “real American hot dogs”) – Chinese creativity

Burger King vs. King Burger- Chinese creativity

Burger King vs. “Cheese Burger” 芝士堡 – Chinese creativity

Dairy Queen 冰雪皇后 – DQ  vs. Dairy Fairy冰雪精灵     – Chinese creativity

Not everything is knockoff in imitation outlets. At Dairy Fairy, a national franchise chain that opened in 2008, ice cream, including the Blizzard-like “Ice Storm,” is served upside-down, just like at Dairy Queen, which has 360 stores in China. Cups are marked with “DF” in red and blue, resembling the colors Dairy Queen uses and its “DQ” nickname. Dairy Fairy employees are donned in blue uniforms with red aprons—nearly a mirror image of Dairy Queen employees. But at a Dairy Fairy in Beijing on Tuesday, the menu also included items that one wouldn’t find at a DQ, such as spicy-pepper-flavored ice cream.

Dairy Fairy declined to comment and didn’t offer details on the number of stores it operates in China. Dairy Queen vice president of international marketing Justin Holtkamp said the company isn’t aware of Dairy Fairy, but that it has other imitators, who just use the company’s name or call it “Dairy & Queen.” Dairy Queen has shut down two stores that infringed its trademark within the last year, he said.

from Made in China: Fake Stores
Imitators Offer Own Versions of IKEA, Dairy Queen Down to the Tiniest Details
August 3, 2011, Wall Street Journal,

fakes of Starbucks, Haagen-Dazs, Cartier, Chanel

KFC 肯德基 and restaurants it has inspired in China: 吉阿婆 Ji A Po Malatang (spicy soup); 李先生 Li Xiansheng / Mr. Li

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legit Chinese restaurant chains:

Pizza Fun 欢乐比萨 – in Guiyang

豪享来 Haoxianglai restaurants – Chinese restaurant chains (and in Guiyang)

豪客来 Houcaller steak restaurants – Chinese restaurant chains (and in Guiyang)


真功夫 Zhen Gong Fu (with Bruce Lee 李小龙 logo) – Chinese restaurant chains

上岛咖啡西餐厅 – Chinese restaurant chains

Babela’s Kitchen 巴贝拉 (Italian food)– Chinese restaurant chains

Saizeriya 萨莉亚意式餐厅  (Italian)– Chinese restaurant chains

华莱士 Hua Lai Shi (chicken) – Chinese restaurant chains

rbt 仙踪林 (xian zong lin) – Chinese restaurant chains

Goubuli Dumplings 狗不理包子 – Chinese restaurant chains .

Quanjude Beijing Duck 全聚德北京烤鸭 – Chinese restaurant chains

Da Niang Dumpling 大娘水饺 – Chinese restaurant chains

美国加州牛肉面大王 California Beef Noodle King – Chinese restaurant chains  (not really “American” )

Panda Express – Chinese food restaurants in the US  美国的中餐连锁餐馆


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for snack food lovers:

foreign snacks in China Lay’s 乐事, Zero Coke 零度可乐 (可口可乐), Snickers 士力架, Dove 德芙

foreign brands in China: Coca Cola 可口克拉, Pepsi 百事可乐, Lay’s potato chips 乐事,Kraft 卡夫, Walmart 沃尔玛, Subway 赛百味

What’s In A Brand Name? Chinese Brand Names Of Multinationals

Pick your Chinese brand name carefully…

from ,
2013 May 7, by Haike Bruneel, Sales & Marketing Officer

After enjoying your “sparrow’s nest coffee” while smoking your “10 000 treasure road”, you drive your “treasured horse” to the nearest “family blessing”.

Choosing a Chinese brand name

Meaning: after having your Nescafé coffee and smoking your Marlboro cigarette, you drive your BMW to the nearest Carrefour.

There are many funny examples of where multinational companies have used Chinese names, with the result looking like they’re lost in translation. They may seem weird to foreign ears, but for native Chinese, they zing like music. What’s more, they often give a new meaning to the original name. (Cartoon © Zhang Chengliang / China Daily)

This is what we’ll be talking about:
• Why is having a Chinese name important for foreign businesses?
• Chinese brand names unfolded
• Renaming your brand, piece of cake?
•When companies don’t partake in the name changing game
• Does your brand name really influence success?
• Same story for Chinese brands

Why is having a Chinese name important for foreign businesses?

Two major reasons:

– It helps with penetrating the Chinese market. For sure, how were you otherwise planning on conquering the huge Chinese market when its consumers can’t even pronounce, let alone remember, your brand name?
– Names are really important in China and more precisely the meaning it represents. Having a meaningful name will make your brand look much more appealing.

Chinese brand names unfolded

When a foreign company chooses a Chinese brand name, there are several possibilities:

1. Literal translation

Using this approach, the disadvantage is that in most cases the new Chinese name doesn’t sound similar to the original brand’s name. These companies will need to spend marketing time and money on building brand awareness and building the association between their original brand name and the Chinese character trade mark.


Chinese NamePronounciation (pinyin)Meaning
Apple苹果PíngguǒPíngguǒ: apple
Lǎn: olive
Microsoft微软WēiruǎnWēi: micro
Ruǎn: soft
Volkswagen大众汽车Dàzhòng qìchēDàzhòng: public, all

2. Phonetic translation

A phonetic translation of a company’s brand name is only beneficial when that company already has a reputation in the Chinese market.


Chinese NamePronounciationMeaning
Kraft 卡夫KǎfuKǎ: card
Fu: husband
Wal-Mart 沃尔玛Wò’ērmǎWò: fertile
Ēr: suffix often used in names to indicate the sound [-l], [-el]
Mǎ: mary
Dior迪奥Dí’àoDí: enlighten, guide
Ào: profound and difficult to understand
McDonald’s麦当劳MàidāngláoMài: general term for wheat, barley, oats, etc.
Dāng: to serve as, or to be used as
Láo: to work

Kraft Subway Walmart

3. Combination of literal and phonetic translation

Most companies opt for a combination of both. Having a phonetic translation so your brand name sounds (more or less) the same in Chinese with preferably well-chosen Chinese characters that have a positive meaning and can also describe the company or product.

Examples are numerous:

Chinese NamePronounciationMeaning
Nestlé雀巢咖啡Quècháo kāfēi
Què: sparrow
Cháo: nest
Kāfēi: coffee
Meaning: Sparrow’s Nest Coffee

Marlboro万宝路WànbǎolùWàn: 10 000
Bǎo: treasure
Lù: street, path
Meaning: 10 000 Treasure Road
BMW宝马BǎomǎBǎo: treasure
Mǎ: horse
Meaning: Treasured Horse
Mercedez Benz 奔驰BēnchíBēn: run fast
Chí: go quickly
Meaning: Dashing Speed
Jaguar捷豹JiébàoJié: win, victory
Bào: leopard, panther
Meaning: Swifting Panther
Coca-Cola可口可乐KěkǒukělèKěkǒu: delicous
Kělè: happiness
Meaning: Delicious & Happiness
Subway赛百味Sài bǎiwèiSài: To surpass, to excel
Bǎi: 100
Wèi: flavour
Meaning: Filled with One Hundred Flavours
Carrefour家乐福JiālèfúJiā: family
Lè: happy
Fú: prosperous
Meaning: Family Blessing
Lexus雷克萨斯LéikèsàsīLéi: thunder
Kè: to overcome with victory
Sà: filler sound that appears in many words like 萨萨 (sàsà ), the sound the leaves make when it’s windy.
Sī: phonetic element
Meaning: All the above results in a wild sounding ride, doesn’t it?
Pepsi百事可乐BǎishìkělèBǎi: 100
Shì: matter, thing
Kělè: happiness
Meaning: A Hundred Happy Things
Lay’s 乐事LèshìLè: happiness
Shì: matter, thing
Meaning: Happy Event

Coca Cola Lays Pepsi
Pay attention to:

– When going for a phonetic translation, companies need to make sure the Chinese name sounds the same as their original brand name
– Chinese brand names must be easy to remember
– Meaning should describe the product or brand in a positive way

Renaming your brand, piece of cake?

As mentioned above, your Chinese brand name should not be taken very lightly. However, foreign companies most likely lack knowledge of Chinese language or mostly don’t have an in-house Chinese language expert.

This results in the growing popularity of consulting companies specialized in renaming foreign brands.

When companies don’t partake in the name changing game

Some companies decided to not have a Chinese brand name when entering the market. By doing this, they want to stress their exclusivity. However, these brands have picked up nicknames along the way given by the general public.


Chinese NamePronounciationMeaning
Quaker Oatmeal* 老人牌Lǎorén pái“Old Man Brand”, name based on logo
Ralph Lauren三脚马Sānjiǎo mǎ“Three Legged Horse”, name based on logo
*Quaker Oatmeal has in the meantime adopted a Chinese brand name: 桂格Guì Gé, which literally means “Cinamon Standard”.

Does your brand name really influence success?

Hard to define.
However, here are a few examples that might indicate a relation between a brand’s name and its success in a certain market.

– Mercedes Benz and BMW are both big car companies in China. Benz’s Chinese name holds the meaning of ‘dashing speed’, while BMW means ‘treasure horse’. ‘Dashing speed’ holds a more masculine connotation, while ‘treasure’ is a feminine trait. BMW is among the leading sellers to wealthy Chinese women.” (Li & Shoostari, 2003)

Did-you-know: There is also a local variant for BMW: 别摸我 (Bié Mō Wǒ), which literally means ‘Don’t Touch Me’.

– Search engine Bing has found it difficult to break through the Chinese market. Bing sounds similar to the Chinese word for ‘illness’ 病 (bìng). Although it’s official Chinese name is 必应 (bì yìng), which means ‘very certain to respond’, the resemblance of its original brand name with illness is hard to compete against.

– Best Buy, 百思买(bǎisīmǎi) In Chinese this means ‘Think 100 times before you buy’ , not the best name for a retail store, isn’t it? The company has been closed down.

Of course, these are not all scientific facts, but it nevertheless gives us some food for thought. Moreover, it’s hard to believe that Chinese people wouldn’t pay attention to the characters any company chooses to use in its brand name.

Same story for Chinese brands

It works the other way around as well. Nowadays, local Chinese firms must also engage in a name changing game as they want to gain more international awareness.

Top 100 Brands of ChinaFor instance, Jiànlìbǎo, a Chinese domestic soft drink brand, had difficulties breaking through on the international market as foreign consumers had a hard time pronouncing its name.

Also, a recent study by HD Trade Services shows that a vast majority (94%!) of Americans can’t name even one Chinese brand. This indicates once more that adjusting your brand name to the market is beneficial, if not necessary. (Image © Ads of China)

A small recap

Chinese brand name is not only a game important for foreign companies. When those companies decide to penetrate the Chinese market, they can rely on the expertise of brand naming companies. Only a minority has a single phonetic meaning, whereas most companies opt for meaning in their brand name, mostly stressing the product’s benefits.

Next time someone is talking to you about riding his “swift panther”, don’t frown your eyebrows in huge wonder, they’re most likely talking about their new Jaguar.