Northern Chinese cuisine
I am looking for a good place to get Northern Chinese food in the DC area. I studied in Beijing during my undergrad and loved the food there but haven't been able to find anything that comes close to being authentic in the States. It seems like every Chinese place here only has Sichuan cuisine. Any suggestions? Thanks!
I guess we need to define what constitutes Northern Chinese food. Historically, until about 35 years ago virtually all Chinese food in the US was Cantonese (because most of the Chinese residents had origins in Guangdong), so "Northern" was everything except Cantonese food, and would include Taiwanese, Shanghai, Beijing, Hunan and Sichuan styles. Under this definition, a lot of the authentic Chinese restaurants in the Rockville to Gaithersburg corridor are "Northern," though they may not be the Beijing style you're looking for. Also, don't be misled by the Americanized, faux Hunan and Sichuan style Chinese restaurants, as they really don't resemble anything you'd find in China.
My parents are from Shandong- Henan region of Northern China and I have found the Northern style Chinese restaurant options are limited in this area. The better Chinese places in the Wash DC area are mostly Southern Chinese style ranging from Taiwan, Cantonese, Sichuan, and Hunan.
Northern Chinese is very diverse in itself-- there are variations of specialities in noodles, dumplings, steamed bread, etc. If you live in NoVA, Peking Gourmet Inn in Falls Church has decent Peking Duck and some pretty good dishes made with homegrown fresh spring onions. FYI-they also have lots of American style Chinese dishes. For beef noodle soup, wheat based products (steamed buns, noodles, dumplings), and small veggie side dishes try A&J in Rockville and Falls Church.