Fan Shan Restaurant in Beijing
Has anyone eaten at this restaurant in Beijing? I know it is touristy & pricey but from what I have read and seen it seems like a great experience. Do they have an a la carte menu or just the banquets?
I'm guessing you mean Fangshan restaurant in Beihai park.仿膳飯莊
There aren't that many places that serve imperial style food. Fangshan is the main one - and the oldest - started by former palace chefs in the 1920's, or so i'm told.
There's a new article on fangshan with its new prices
but you can still eat there without breaking the bank.
apparently there's also a chinese language website
www.fangshan.cn but it's just in chinese.
Jerome, thank you for the reference. I am sorry for the mistake, I do mean Fang Shan restaurant. I did receive a copy of their banquet style menus through Peninsula Palace ( 4 different menus ranging in price from 258 to 488 Yuan). However, there were 13 courses on each menu and not only is it too much for me, it had items I would not order normally ( nor would I enjoy). What I would like to find out is if one can eat there to experience the ambience and the setting and chose from an a la carte menu dishes that appeal to me.
one can choose from an a la carte menu. But this isn't "chinese food" or any reasonable facsimile. The imperial kitchen is its own thing. The real Man-Han famous banquet is quite expensive now and all 108 dishes involve 6 seatings - 16 dishes in each seating today.
The food may differ greatly from the chinese food most people know, even chinese people in china. there are also snack dishes available.
consider as well, tingliguan in the yiheyuan summer palace. It also serves this kind of cuisine.
For another rare cuisine in beijing, consider the old beijing hotel and ask about tanjia/tan family cuisine meals. I think they are the only place in the country that serves this kind of food.
you seem very well informed about this topic - do you live in Beijing by any chance? I will be in China for 3 weeks and will have an opportunity to sample the more traditional chinese food in different regions ( chinese food happens to be my favorite food in the world). I thought Fang Shan or Tanjia/tan family would be a unique experience one can only have in Beijing. Thank you for the insight.
No, I'm in los angeles and miss many things one can get in beijing.
check out shaguoju for a kind of food that's real beijing, not even shandong influenced. Also, the street food is a bit different there.
Ask around for where the good baozi type places are. Do a taste test of quanjude on qianmen vs bianyifang for two classic different styles of roast duck.
kaorouji in the northern section of the city vs kaorouwan for mongol roast lamb (bbq) or hotpots.
I don't know if cuihualou or fengzeyuan are still around, but for years they served classic shandong banquet fare, the closest classic cuisine for beijing.
If you aren't going to Shanxi province (not xi'an's shaanxi, the datong/taiyuan province) ask around for a place that does shanxi style duck. it's different than the beijing style and quite good.
Also, hard to find now i'm told, but two things that were quite good in beijing: 1. cherry brandy (yingtao bailandi) and 2. GuoFu3 (果脯), preserved fruits NOT like the southern saltysour style - sweet but not cloying, esp the apple, pear and melon.
enjoy your trip.