As a vibrant city where the modern architecture sits alongside cultural relics from times bygone, Beijing is the perfect city to visit if you want a taste of Chinese culture and history. The local flavour here goes well beyond knowing which temples and landmarks you simply need to see – Beijing is also home to some truly impressive restaurants where you can sample some of the best fine dining in the country. If you’re looking to make the most of moving to Beijing by stopping by the most impressive restaurants in the area, we’re here to help – here are the top 5 places to eat in Beijing, as voted by the TripAdvisor community.
TRB is a French restaurant found right in the heart of Beijing, round the corner from the likes of Peking University and Beihai Park. TRB also ranks #1 on TripAdvisor’s list of more than 9,750 restaurants in the city and is the proud owner of a Travellers’ Choice Awards 2015, meaning that you know it’s always going to be a good choice. Just be aware that when a restaurant comes this highly recommended it’s not going to be the cheapest option around.
If you’re looking for a modern, contemporary place in Beijing where you can find fresh French cuisine, TRB is often the way to go. However, given the atmosphere and price, it’s best saved for a date, a special occasion or for dinner with a group of friends.
Black Sesame Kitchen
Also found in in the heart of central Beijing, the Black Sesame Kitchen is a close contender for best restaurant in Beijing – it’s certainly the best Asian restaurant in the city, as you may have guessed from the name. The Black Sesame Kitchen is known for its excellent local cuisine, service and atmosphere. Unfortunately, like TRB this restaurant is fairly expensive, but given that it holds its own TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence, it’s well worth splashing out here at least once.
If you’re looking to try this restaurant make sure you reserve in advance. This restaurant seats only a single (albeit large) table and follows a set menu of ten courses with two wine pairings. The reason that this tiny restaurant is so popular, aside from the quality of the food and service, is that you dine in an open kitchen where you can see the food being prepared fresh as you wait. Dinner at the Black Sesame Kitchen is an experience to be sure.
Lost Heaven Beijing
The Lost Heaven Beijing is another restaurant with a TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence located in the heart of Beijing. While some people will tell you that Lost Heaven serves Asian Fusion food, this not quite accurate. What they serve is the kind of food you will find in the Yunnan region of southern China, right on the opposite end of the country. This is Chinese food with a touch of Myanmarese and Thai flavour thrown in for good measure.
Continuing the theme of Beijing’s best restaurants being found in the CBD, Siji Minfu Restaurant Peking Roast Duck is another restaurant with a Certificate of Excellence which can be found in the heart of the city. Unsurprisingly, the roast duck is the dish that you simply must try while you’re here – this world famous dish is cooked to utter perfection here and you will not be disappointed by the food.
Just make sure to book in advance because Siji Minfu gets pretty crowded. Considering that you can get a whole duck (for 2), a huge plate of fried rice and drinks to last the meal for around 300 RMB (just over £30), this comes as no surprise.
Beijing Haidilao Hot Pot
You’ll be hard-pressed to miss this restaurant while out and about in Beijing – it can be found in the city centre right in the middle of Wanfujing St. While Haidilao is a chain restaurant, you probably wouldn’t notice if you didn’t already know. The hot pots here are great – especially if you like spicy food – as is the service, entertainment and value. The big thing being touted here is the noodles – the waiter will make fresh noodles for you while dancing, which is always entertaining.