Beijing Restaurants

Since imperial times, Beijing has drawn citizens from all corners of China, and the country's economic boom has only accelerated the culinary diversity of the capital. These days, diners can find food from the myriad cuisines of far-flung regions of China, as well as just about every kind of international food.

Highlights include rare fungi and flowers from Yunnan, chili-strewn Hunan cooking from Mao’s home province, Tibetan yak and tsampa (barley flour), mutton kebabs and grilled flatbreads from Xinjiang, numbingly spicy Sichuan cuisine, and chewy noodles from Shaanxi. And then there are ethnic foods from all over, with some—notably Italian, Japanese and Korean—in abundance.

You can spend as little as $5 per person for a decent meal or $100 and up on a lavish banquet. The variety of venues is also part of the fun, with five-star hotel dining rooms, holes-in-the-wall, and refurbished courtyard houses all represented. Reservations are always a good idea, especially for higher-end places, so ask your hotel to book you a table.

Beijingers tend to eat dinner around 6 pm, and many local restaurants will have closed their kitchens by 9 pm, though places that stay open until the wee hours aren’t hard to find. Tipping is not the custom although some larger, international restaurants will add a 15% service charge to the bill, as do five-star hotel restaurants. Be aware before you go out that small and medium venues only take cash payments or local bank cards; more established restaurants usually accept credit cards.

Yanjing, the local beer, together with the ubiquitous Tsingtao, is available everywhere in Beijing. A growing number of imported beer brands have entered the market, and Beijing has a burgeoning craft beer scene of its own. And now many Chinese restaurants now have extensive wine menus.

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  • 1. Da Dong Roast Duck

    $$$ | Chaoyang

    You won't go wrong with the namesake dish at this world-famous eatery. Dadong's version features crisp, caramel-hued skin (over meat that's less oily than tradition...

    You won't go wrong with the namesake dish at this world-famous eatery. Dadong's version features crisp, caramel-hued skin (over meat that's less oily than tradition dictates) and is served with crisp sesame pockets in addition to the usual steamed pancakes.

    22 Dongsishitiao, Beijing, Beijing, 100007, China
    010-5169–0328

    Known For

    • Experimental takes on Chinese classics
    • Guaranteed quality
    • Skilled duck carvers

    Restaurant Details

    Rate Includes: Credit cards accepted, Reservations essential
  • 2. Dali Courtyard

    $$ | Dongcheng District

    This beautiful courtyard restaurant serves refined Yunnan food. What's more, the menu is fixed, so this is an excellent choice for those who don't want...

    This beautiful courtyard restaurant serves refined Yunnan food. What's more, the menu is fixed, so this is an excellent choice for those who don't want to misfire on the ordering.

    67 Xiaojingchang Hutong, Beijing, Beijing, 100009, China
    010-8404–1430

    Known For

    • Tranquil atmosphere
    • Fresh ingredients
    • Authentic cuisine
  • 3. Din Tai Fung

    $$ | Chaoyang

    This Taiwanese restaurant specializes in beautifully crafted xiaolong bao—steamed dumplings that are filled with piping hot, aromatic soup. Crab, chicken, and duck are lovely alternatives...

    This Taiwanese restaurant specializes in beautifully crafted xiaolong bao—steamed dumplings that are filled with piping hot, aromatic soup. Crab, chicken, and duck are lovely alternatives to the standard pork dumplings, or go wild with the black-truffle option.

    24 Xinyuan Xili Zhongjie, Beijing, Beijing, 100027, China
    010-6462–4502

    Known For

    • Friendly, efficient service
    • The dandan mian (simple noodles with a chili sauce)
    • Several locations around town

    Restaurant Details

    Rate Includes: Credit cards accepted
  • 4. King's Joy

    $$$$ | Dongcheng District

    The miracle-worker chef transforms tofu, wheat gluten, mushrooms, and other vegetarian ingredients into delectable "fake meat" dishes at this upscale courtyard restaurant. The views of...

    The miracle-worker chef transforms tofu, wheat gluten, mushrooms, and other vegetarian ingredients into delectable "fake meat" dishes at this upscale courtyard restaurant. The views of the Lama Temple across the street seem equally miraculous.

    2 Wudaoying Hutong, Beijing, Beijing, China
    010-8404--9191

    Known For

    • Appeals even to meat-lovers
    • Heavenly harp music
    • Elegant, inspirational setting
  • 5. Made In China

    $$$ | Dongcheng District

    Inside the glassed-in kitchen of this Grand Hyatt restaurant, white-robed chefs artfully twirl floury noodles and efficiently hook beautifully bronzed Peking ducks on poles outside...

    Inside the glassed-in kitchen of this Grand Hyatt restaurant, white-robed chefs artfully twirl floury noodles and efficiently hook beautifully bronzed Peking ducks on poles outside tall brick ovens. Although pricey, it's Chinese dining at its finest.

    1 Dong Chang An Jie, Beijing, Beijing, 10738, China
    010-8518–1234

    Known For

    • Sumptuous setting
    • Theatrical preparation
    • Stellar service

    Restaurant Details

    Rate Includes: Reservations essential
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  • 6. Migas

    $$ | Chaoyang

    Migas is a whirlwind adventure in rustic Spanish gastronomy. The setting is glitzy, and the atmosphere is spirited, especially after 9 pm, when the bar...

    Migas is a whirlwind adventure in rustic Spanish gastronomy. The setting is glitzy, and the atmosphere is spirited, especially after 9 pm, when the bar and sprawling terrace really spring to life.

    1 Jianguomen Wai Dajie, Beijing, Beijing, China
    010-6500–7579

    Known For

    • Stunning urban views
    • DJ music
    • Free dance classes twice a week
  • 7. Sake Manzo

    $$ | Chaoyang

    Beijing’s best all-round Japanese izakaya-style restaurant is the place to go for frothy mugs of Asahi draft, sublime soba noodles, and some of the best...

    Beijing’s best all-round Japanese izakaya-style restaurant is the place to go for frothy mugs of Asahi draft, sublime soba noodles, and some of the best sushi and sashimi in the city for the price. The slow-cooked pork belly in miso broth with a poached egg gets rave reviews.

    40 Liangmaqiao Lu, Beijing, Beijing, China
    010-6436–1608

    Known For

    • Minimalist decor
    • Sake tasting flights
    • Attentive service
  • 8. Temple Restaurant Beijing

    $$$$ | Dongcheng District

    Worship at the altar of Epicureanism, and surround yourself with serenity at the city's best international fine-dining restaurant, nestled in the heart of Old Beijing....

    Worship at the altar of Epicureanism, and surround yourself with serenity at the city's best international fine-dining restaurant, nestled in the heart of Old Beijing. TRB (as it's also known) serves high-end European cuisine in a spacious, minimalist dining room within a fabulously restored Ming Dynasty Buddhist temple complex.

    23 Songzhusi, Beijing, Beijing, 100009, China
    010-8400–2232

    Known For

    • Excellent wine list
    • Impeccable service
    • Four-course tasting menu

    Restaurant Details

    Rate Includes: Reservations essential
  • 9. Yotsuba

    $$$ | Chaoyang

    This tiny, unassuming restaurant serves arguably the best sushi in the city. The seafood is flown in from Tokyo's Tsukiji fish market; the daily chef's...

    This tiny, unassuming restaurant serves arguably the best sushi in the city. The seafood is flown in from Tokyo's Tsukiji fish market; the daily chef's selection (about Y280) is a wooden board of sushi made from the best catches of the day.

    39 Maizidian Jie, Beijing, Beijing, China
    010-6586–7166

    Known For

    • Authentic Japanese atmosphere
    • Good lunch deals
    • Reservations essential

    Restaurant Details

    Rate Includes: Credit cards accepted, Reservations essential
  • 10. Alameda

    $$ | Chaoyang

    Serving contemporary European fare with a Brazilian twist, Alameda is housed in a funky outdoor mall behind the hubbub of Sanlitun's bar street. Though most...

    Serving contemporary European fare with a Brazilian twist, Alameda is housed in a funky outdoor mall behind the hubbub of Sanlitun's bar street. Though most lauded for its good value weekday prix-fixe lunch (88 RMB for two courses), which often features filet mignon or codfish, on weekends the restaurant slow cooks a big batch of authentic feijoada—Brazil's national dish—a hearty black-bean stew with pork and rice. The glass walls and ceiling make it a bright, pleasant place, but they do magnify the din of the crowded room.

    Sanlitun Lu, Beijing, Beijing, 100027, China
    010-6417–8084

    Restaurant Details

    Rate Includes: Credit cards accepted
  • 11. Aria

    $$$$ | Chaoyang

    Enjoy deluxe hotel dining amid murals and paintings of cheerful Italian Renaissance characters at Aria. Choose from three settings: the posh dining and bar area...

    Enjoy deluxe hotel dining amid murals and paintings of cheerful Italian Renaissance characters at Aria. Choose from three settings: the posh dining and bar area on the first floor, intimate private rooms upstairs, or alfresco on a terrace, protected by the din of downtown by neatly manicured bushes and roses. A decadent meal here would include foie gras and seafood bisque, followed by one of the excellent steaks, with a playful deconstructed cheesecake for dessert. The best deal at this elegant restaurant is the three-course weekday business lunch with coffee or tea for Y188.

    1 Jianguomenwai Dajie, Beijing, Beijing, 100004, China
    010-6505–2266

    Restaurant Details

    Rate Includes: Credit cards accepted
  • 12. Assaggi

    $ | Chaoyang

    Your mood brightens the minute you walk up the sunny spiral staircase to the rooftop patio, which includes glassed-in and open-air sections and overlooks the...

    Your mood brightens the minute you walk up the sunny spiral staircase to the rooftop patio, which includes glassed-in and open-air sections and overlooks the wide, tree-lined streets of the surrounding embassy district. It's a fine setting in which to enjoy a few glasses of wine accompanied by parma ham or one of the pastas on offer. Check out the reasonable prix-fixe business lunches for around Y100.

    1 Sanlitun Bei Xiaojie, Beijing, Beijing, 100027, China
    010-8454–4508

    Restaurant Details

    Rate Includes: Credit cards accepted
  • 13. Baijia Dayuan

    $$$$ | Haidian District

    Staff dressed in richly hued, Qing-dynasty attire welcome you at this grand courtyard house, the Bai family mansion. Featured delicacies (ordered via an iPad) include...

    Staff dressed in richly hued, Qing-dynasty attire welcome you at this grand courtyard house, the Bai family mansion. Featured delicacies (ordered via an iPad) include bird's-nest soup, braised sea cucumber, abalone, and authentic imperial snacks.

    15 Suzhou St., Beijing, Beijing, 100080, China
    010-6265–4186

    Known For

    • Live Peking opera performances
    • Historic setting
    • Beautiful garden

    Restaurant Details

    Rate Includes: Credit cards accepted, Reservations essential
  • 14. Baoyuan Dumpling

    $ | Chaoyang

    This cheerful, homey joint offers dozens of creative dumpling fillings alongside classics such as pork and cabbage. The colorful purple, green, or orange dumpling wrappers,...

    This cheerful, homey joint offers dozens of creative dumpling fillings alongside classics such as pork and cabbage. The colorful purple, green, or orange dumpling wrappers, made by adding vegetable juice to the dough, are equally delightful.

    North of 6 Maizidian Jie, Beijing, Beijing, China
    010-6586–4967

    Known For

    • Minimum order (100 grams/3.5 ounces) of any dumpling variety
    • Cheese and other adventurous fillings
    • Popular with diplomats who work in the area

    Restaurant Details

    Rate Includes: No credit cards
  • 15. Barolo

    $$$$ | Chaoyang

    Well executed Italian food in plush surroundings makes this luxury hotel restaurant as appropriate for a power lunch as for a romantic dinner. Wine is...

    Well executed Italian food in plush surroundings makes this luxury hotel restaurant as appropriate for a power lunch as for a romantic dinner. Wine is clearly the inspiration, from the burgundy hues of the decor to the long list of Italian vintages to the use of the restaurant's namesake in dishes such as tagliolini with sea urchin, suckling pig, and wagyu beef cheek.

    83A Jianguo Lu, Beijing, Beijing, 100025, China
    010-5908–8888

    Restaurant Details

    Rate Includes: Credit cards accepted
  • 16. Bellagio

    $$ | Chaoyang

    Like other branches in this popular chain of glitzy, see-and-be-seen restaurants, this one dishes up Taiwanese favorites to a largely young, upwardly mobile clientele. A...

    Like other branches in this popular chain of glitzy, see-and-be-seen restaurants, this one dishes up Taiwanese favorites to a largely young, upwardly mobile clientele. A delicious choice is the "three-cup chicken" (sanbeiji), served in a sizzling pot fragrant with ginger, garlic, and basil.

    6 Gongti Xilu, Beijing, Beijing, 100027, China
    010-6551–3533

    Known For

    • Smartly dressed staff with identical haircuts
    • Taiwanese desserts such as shaved ice with condensed milk
    • Open until 4 am, so popular with clubbers

    Restaurant Details

    Rate Includes: Credit cards accepted
  • 17. Biteapitta

    $ | Chaoyang

    Located upstairs in a dive behind Sanlitun's bar street, this bright and spacious kosher falafel joint is a breath of fresh air. Biteapitta has been...

    Located upstairs in a dive behind Sanlitun's bar street, this bright and spacious kosher falafel joint is a breath of fresh air. Biteapitta has been filling Beijing tummies for over a decade with quick and tasty Mediterranean fare such as baba ghanoush, roasted chicken, and pita sandwiches brimming with yogurt, tahini, cucumbers, and tomatoes. The cheerful room encourages diners to linger over a lemonade or mint tea, with plenty of power outlets to help them catch up on emails.

    Sanlitun Houjie, Beijing, Beijing, 100027, China
    010-6467–2961

    Restaurant Details

    Rate Includes: Credit cards accepted
  • 18. Bottega

    $$ | Chaoyang

    You probably didn't come all the way to Beijing for pizza, but you won't regret having it at this restaurant. The Neapolitan owners ensure that...

    You probably didn't come all the way to Beijing for pizza, but you won't regret having it at this restaurant. The Neapolitan owners ensure that everything is authentic, from the chewy but light pizza pies (cooked in an imported wood-fired oven) and perfectly prepared pasta dishes to the impressive wine list.

    81 Sanlitun Lu, Beijing, Beijing, China
    010-6416–1752

    Known For

    • Kitsch sodas
    • Specialty pizza featuring creamy burrata
    • Indulgent desserts
  • 19. Brian McKenna @ The Courtyard

    $$$$ | Dongcheng District

    With its unique perch overlooking the Forbidden City’s moat, the Courtyard made a name for itself as Beijing’s most romantic restaurant. Under the recent stewardship...

    With its unique perch overlooking the Forbidden City’s moat, the Courtyard made a name for itself as Beijing’s most romantic restaurant. Under the recent stewardship of the British chef Brian McKenna, and after a designer makeover from the team behind New York’s W Hotel, it has emerged as a destination restaurant for Beijing’s jet set. Prix-fixe menus of molecular-inspired cooking woo diners with kitchen tricks inspired by the likes of El Bulli and the Fat Duck. Service and execultion can be hit or miss (often depending on whether Chef McKenna is at the helm or not), but some of the dishes, like the chocolate terra-cotta warrior emerging from edible “soil,” are really quite special.

    95 Donghuamen Dajie, Beijing, Beijing, China
    010-6526–8883

    Restaurant Details

    Rate Includes: No lunch, Reservations essential
  • 20. Café Constance

    $ | Chaoyang

    Teutonic timbers frame the facade of this two-story restaurant and bakery that serves specialties and all-day brunch fare from southern Germany. Downstairs, find excellent breads,...

    Teutonic timbers frame the facade of this two-story restaurant and bakery that serves specialties and all-day brunch fare from southern Germany. Downstairs, find excellent breads, pastries, prepared sandwiches, and an authentic Sacher torte, for take away or eating at one of the café's tables. For more filling fare, head upstairs, where a hearty menu of sausages, schnitzels, and dumplings awaits, along with a selection of imported beers.

    Zaoying Lu, Beijing, Beijing, 100016, China
    010-5867–0201

    Restaurant Details

    Rate Includes: Credit cards accepted

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