The name 狗不理(gǒu bùlǐ) comes from a person named 高贵友(Gāo Guìyǒu) who lived during the Qing Dynasty. Throughout his life he was called by his nickname “狗子(gǒu zi)” or “dog.” He lived in Tianjin since childhood, and worked for three years at a riverside shop learning how to make steamed buns and other foods by hand. Afterwards, because he was so good at it, he started his own eatery that specialized in making steamed buns.
During that time, Gao’s business was booming because his steamed buns had the perfect color, fragrance and form. He became so busy that he didn’t even have time to talk to customers that came by to buy the steamed buns. Because of this, the customers used to joke and say, “Dog (refering to Gao) sells steamed buns, he ignores people.” From this the phrase “狗不理(gǒu bùlǐ)” meaning “the dog ignores” became very famous, and people started calling all of the steamed buns from his eatery “狗不理包子(gǒu bùlǐ bāozi).”
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