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Beijing dining


cwyc
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[...]

You're talking about the small park on the side of the road?

Jingshan park is the one which has the big hill overlooking the Forbidden City. It's separated from the FC by the moat and a rather large road. The hill was made from all the dirt dug up to make the moat - it's a pretty big hill!!

Ahh! I know the little park, I think! It's a sort of 'strip park' right next to the road, isn't it? In that case, Bei Heyan road is the one that runs parallel to Wangfujing and Bei Chizi Lu and it is slap bang between them....

In that case, Jingshan would be about 10 mins walk from Bei Heyan road.

<a href='http://www.longfengwines.com' target='_blank'>Wine Tasting in the Big Beige of Beijing</a>

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[...]

You're talking about the small park on the side of the road?

Jingshan park is the one which has the big hill overlooking the Forbidden City. It's separated from the FC by the moat and a rather large road. The hill was made from all the dirt dug up to make the moat - it's a pretty big hill!!

Ahh! I know the little park, I think! It's a sort of 'strip park' right next to the road, isn't it? In that case, Bei Heyan road is the one that runs parallel to Wangfujing and Bei Chizi Lu and it is slap bang between them....

That's the one.

But I didn't think it was that close to Jingshan Park. Not that part of the road, anyway.

Michael aka "Pan"

 

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Oh - must be further up/down than I thought. :sad:

Actually, my mind must really be going..as the street where I recall seeing all those restaurants isn't Yuetan Park West Road...but Chaoyang Park west road.

One day I will get my Beijing parks sorted in my head!!! Doh!

Speaking about restaurants near parks, has anyone been to a restaurant on the north side of Tiantan Park (I know that's the right one!!) that was famous for serving Tea duck and these scrumptious 'Cat's ear noodles' (little wee noodley things just shaped like cat's ears....kind of like tiny oriechietti (sp?) )?

I haven't been there for a few years and last thing I heard, the neighbour was scheduled to be demolished.... :sad:

<a href='http://www.longfengwines.com' target='_blank'>Wine Tasting in the Big Beige of Beijing</a>

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  • 4 months later...

My American friend is currently living in Beijing. What all-vegetarian restaurants can I recommend her? I'm thinking in particular of restaurants that use soy and gluten to make all kinds of meat-imitation dishes.

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  • 4 weeks later...

Going to Beijing for two nights in May. Can anyone make suggestions for:

1) A consensus on the one "must try" place for Peking Duck?

2) A top Beijing restaurant if you were there "for one night only" (other than the duck)?

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my guide book lists 2 big ones, as already mentioned by some in this thread, 'qianmen quanjude roast duck', and 'quanjude roast duck'. Lichun is located deep in a hutong and harder to find but it costs half the price.

this time tomorrow in Peking i'll have my first dinner of duck...woohoo! however i have a feeling i won't be eating it every other day for the next 10 days...the further from Chengdu i go the more i miss Sichuan food.

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Liqun is hard for Beijing cab drivers to find, but be warned that it doesn't seem to be hard for big tourist buses to find...

Michael aka "Pan"

 

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i did have my first duck here in Peking last night at Liqun :) it is indeed deep in a hutong, many blocks from my hotel in another hutong on the same straight street. at first i didn't think it existed anymore as most of the hutong has been demolished, and is still being destroyed as we speak. it's empty and eerie! first thing you step inside the door there's a wood oven with ducks being roasted. the place is very alive and well to my surprise. i was lucky to beat the friday evening crowd. by the time i left [8pm] the queue was all the way to the door and not many people were leaving! massive cholesterol intake in 2 hours for me. no more eating for another 3 days :)

i wonder what they do to the rest of my duck. i would've liked to finish all the meat in it.

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  • 3 weeks later...
1) A consensus on the one "must try" place for Peking Duck?

I think Quan Ju De is the way to go. A bit touristy, yes, but my parents have been living in Beijing for a year and still think it's head and shoulders above the others.

For something a little different, try the fish at Fei Teng Yu Xiang on Jiangguomenwai Road in the Chaoyang Zone. It's cooked in a lot of oil with TONS of Szechwan peppercorns. Ridiculously tender, will make your mouth delightfully numb.

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I was in Beijing maybe 2 years ago I was not too impressed with the food, although I think it was because I didn't know where to go. I did try the Quanjude duck but my impression was that the Hong Kong version was better.

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I was in Beijing maybe 2 years ago I was not too impressed with the food, although I think it was because I didn't know where to go. I did try the Quanjude duck but my impression was that the Hong Kong version was better.

I love Beijing and love its food and there are plenty of great places to go (with some of the best being the tiny places in the hutongs or away from the main tourist areas). However there are also some very passable touristy/trendy places around the city.

As for duck, Quanjude isn't worth it, a total tourist trap and rip off. My best recent experience was at BianYi which is in the Hadamen Hotel, at the Chongwenmen subway stop.

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Going to Beijing for two nights in May. Can anyone make suggestions for:

1) A consensus on the one "must try" place for Peking Duck?

2) A top Beijing restaurant if you were there "for one night only" (other than the duck)?

The best Peking Duck in Beijing, to my mind, is served at Made in China, a restaurant in the Grand Hyatt at Wangfujing. I know, it's a hotel restaurant, but the duck is truly the best that I have tried so far. The duck itself is crisp and flavorful without being fatty or greasy, the crepes are served warm in a bamboo basket and in addition to the typical condiments (scallions, cucumbers and hoisin sauce), there are dishes of sugar and pickles as well. Reservations at least one day in advance are a must - this place is that popular. And reserve your duck(s) at the same time as well when making table reservations.

Another place that I like for Peking Duck is Jiuhuashan, which is on the western part of the city, near the Shangri-la. The downside is that they do not carve your duck at your table.

I also like Liqun for the atmosphere. It really has a lao-beijing (old beijing) flavor to the place and it is true that the hutongs around it are facing the wrecking ball, so who knows how long the place will last? The duck I had on my last visit was not great, though. There are a lot of foreigners at this place, but to be fair, I have not seen tourist buses on the several times I have been there. These foreigners come and find the place on their own, eager to experience a dining adventure off the beaten track. And reservations are also a must, and you must also reserve your duck(s) at the same time.

I'm not sure that there is such a thing as a top restaurant in Beijing. But for atmospheric dining in a lovely courtyard house in a hutong, I would suggest either Meifu (Shanghainese cuisine) or The Source (modern Sichuan). I prefer The Source; it is also (relatively) easier to find. These places are listed, with phone numbers and addresses, in That's Beijing, a free monthly English magazine. I suggest calling the restaurant while you are in a cab and then passing the phone to the cabdriver so that the restaurant can direct him/her.

Happy eating in Beijing!

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[...]

Another place that I like for Peking Duck is Jiuhuashan, which is on the western part of the city, near the Shangri-la.  The downside is that they do not carve your duck at your table.

[...]

How does that work for Peking Duck? They leave you with a whole duck and a knife that you would help yourself to carve it? Or they chop up the duck before bringing it to the table, just no carving? Or they carve the duck in the kitchen, just not in front of you at the table?

Edited by hzrt8w (log)
W.K. Leung ("Ah Leung") aka "hzrt8w"
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How does that work for Peking Duck?  They leave you with a whole duck and a knife that you would help yourself to carve it?  Or they chop up the duck before bringing it to the table, just no carving?  Or they carve the duck in the kitchen, just not in front of you at the table?

Pretty sure that means they'd chop it up in the kitchen, so you'd get what? a plate for skin and a plate of meat rather than the whole quack.

More Cookbooks than Sense - my new Cookbook blog!
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How does that work for Peking Duck?  They leave you with a whole duck and a knife that you would help yourself to carve it?  Or they chop up the duck before bringing it to the table, just no carving?  Or they carve the duck in the kitchen, just not in front of you at the table?

Pretty sure that means they'd chop it up in the kitchen, so you'd get what? a plate for skin and a plate of meat rather than the whole quack.

Yup, that is correct. One of the thrills of having Peking Duck in Beijing for me is that in most restaurants, you get to see the duck carved at your table, so that you can admire the skill of the carver.

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  • 5 months later...

Just returned from another trip to Beijing - where the pace was a duck a night.

First one at Xiao Wang's family restaurant in Chaoyang. OK - duck was cold. Skin was not crisp.

Second was at Da Dong - Chinese people love this place. The duck is super lean, they're specially bred, and in addition to the tianmian (many places serve hoisin) sauce and scallions, they recommend trying it with white granulated sugar and raw garlic paste. The place is all white tablecloths, and they have a number of other items on the menu.

Third was back at Liqun, which my friend and I still think had the best duck - fatty and oh so ducky tasting. (The lean duck skin, while crispy, is less duck tasting)

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  • 4 months later...

Hi All,

I'm leaving for my first trip to China tomorrow. My itinerary is:

Beijing - 3 nights

Xi'an - 3 nights

Chengdu - 3 nights

Can anyone help to suggest unmissable dishes or restaurants in each place ? I'm fairly open to all food and can eat quite spicy stuff. I'm not too keen on anything to 'weird' though :-)

Thanks in advance,

Rick

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well... too bad I didn't take names down properly, but I just returned back from a night in Xi'an (yes short.. !!$) yesterday and we completely gorged ourselves for the 36 hours we were there. I'd suggest a few things...

First, print this map out:

http://ditu.google.cn/maps?f=q&hl=zh-CN&q=...93,0.02429&om=1

Dead center in this specific map location is one of the best non-halal (ie. pork) Roujiamo places in Xi'an. You can show the map to your hotel staff to get some directions. Or print, then make an X in the center and show to a cabbie and tell him you want RouJiaMo.

There will usually be a line-up lasting 5-10 minutes every time they run out of the mo breads. It's more expensive than most other shops at 3.5-5RMB (higher for the tenderloin meat) but honestly it is wonderful. Actually, its within my top-3 sandwiches in Asia. If they brought this to my home in Montreal all of the burger shops would be screaming for mercy.

Also, you'll want to go for a walk down DongTingMen road which is right nearby heading eastward where you will find quite a few really fantastic Yangroupaomo places that serve it for 6RMB. Everything is a lot more impressive there than anything on the Muslim street. --Save for one shop..! But you'll have to ask around for it since I always forget the name: It'ss a Guantangbao (soup dumpling shop) right center on the muslim street that serves the best dumplings in China. You think I'm overdoing it with such a statement but go have a try. Also try their Eight treasure congee (babaozhou).

I don't know if you might also be looking a place to stay. A new youth hostelling international place opened up there this week and unless they make some big changes I know I'll be staying there every single trip from now on. They are located near the south gate within the walls. Called XiangZiMen Hostel. 湘子门. You can call them here 029-62867888. For 220 for a great big bed you can't go wrong and they have some super deluxe suites too.. All within an old ming/qing-styled garden house.

Have fun!

Edited by jokhm (log)
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Thanks for the quick response Jokhm.

A couple of questions:

i) What exactly is Roujiamo ? How would I pronounce it ? (Roo-Ji-Ah-Mo ?)

ii) And what is Yangroupaomo ? (Yan-Group-Ow-Mo ?)

ii) What exactly are the 8 treasures in the congee ? Nothing tooo squeamish I hope :-)

Thanks for the hotel advice but we've already got something booked.

Rgds

Rick

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Hi Rick,

No problem..

Nothing squeamish here at all actually

first, roujiamo is basically just a sandwich made with the 'mo' xi'an bread specialty. The filling is only meat (despite what you'll find in 'xi'an shops' elsewhere in china). The meat is basically just pork or beef stewed for extremely long periods, along with the juices and the fat to the point where it is all rendered super-soft and delicious. When you order they grab a fresh baked Mo from the oven and slice it open.. then spoon some meat and liquid onto the cutting pork. Then they chop it up and slide it into the bread. It's pronounced Row-Jia-moh

The Yangroupaomo (yangrou is lamb meat) with basically a 'soaked mo bread'.. yes I suppose that sums it up. It's pronounced Yang Row Pao Moh. The mo is the same type of bread, although usually it is a lot harder. Then they give you a bowl of lamb and potato noodles and dice the bread up; mix it together and then pour on the soup. It can be delicious if you find a good one!

Eight treasure congee is pronounced ba bao Joe. Inside it is a combination of certain fruit and assorted nuts, water chestnut, jujubes and I think some chrysanthemum.. but don't remember exactly.

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Eight treasure congee is pronounced ba bao Joe. Inside it is a combination of certain fruit and assorted nuts, water chestnut, jujubes and I think some chrysanthemum.. but don't remember exactly.

Often times on these "8 treasure" things... whatever 8 ingredients they can find. :wink:

W.K. Leung ("Ah Leung") aka "hzrt8w"
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heh definitely the 8 treasures thing is by no means standard. But this specific restaurant makes a good one and I was basing it on my experience there and at their other beijing location at baiyunguan (which is quite horrible by the way).

Also as a side note to the roujiamo.. supposedly the lao tang or the old stock used for stewing the meat has been in continuous use for up to 300 years in specific places; with the new fresh meat being added in at the end of the day on top of the old. Absolutely no possible way to verify that, but if you ask any Xi'An people what makes the roujiamo so special they might suggest this fact.

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