In Chinese people’s minds, British food is probably one of the most contradictory cuisines in the world: on the one hand, it’s regarded as a ‘dark cuisine
’ thanks to dishes such as jellied eels
; on the other, English afternoon tea
is highly sought after. In either case, check out these Beijing restaurants for a taste of British life.
Annvita Tea Boutique
Cafe, Tea Room, British, $$$
This tea room has been much lauded
as an example of English afternoon tea
’s popularity in China, with claims that its elegantly decorated interior has captured “the real essence of a Victorian living room”. It has outlets in 30 cities across China, and the one in Beijing’s Sanlitun is one of its most popular branches.
The British House
Restaurant, Tea Room, British, $$$
There are so many reasons to visit The British House: a collection of over 100 British brands
; an exterior designed to replicate a nostalgic British townhouse; and most importantly, the first Harrods Tea Room collaborated with the globally famous luxury department store. It’s hard to imagine a more authentic British experience anywhere else.
Restaurant, Tea Room, British, Contemporary, $$$
If you’re looking for a quiet and cozy restaurant for a classic English breakfast
or Eggs Benedict, then Algorithm is your destination. It’s located on the second floor of a glasshouse, with a clear French door through which the warm sunshine will fall on you. Other than British food, Algorithm also has other cuisines, with dishes on the menu named after different cities.
Bar, Bistro, British, Irish, none
Paddy O’Shea’s is one of the best places for fish and chips
in town. Served in a big portion, the dish has several pieces of tender cod, alongside fresh chunky chips. Paddy O’Shea’s is also a very nice Irish bar – they’ve even got football nights!
Restaurant, Gastropub, British, German, $$$
The hutong restaurant Stuff’d is known across town for its homemade sausages – but that doesn’t solely define its British identity, as it also boasts very tasty fish and chips, as well as delicious scotch eggs
. Note that Stuff’d share the same space as the Arrow Factory Taproom – a perfect example of killing two birds with one stone.
Restaurant, British, Contemporary, $$$
You can easily recognize Must Guette in the sea of classy restaurants in Sanlitun Taikoo Li, just by the red mailbox in front of the store. Every detail of the décor seems to be able to remind you of London, and there’s also a small merry-go-around in the center of the restaurant for kids (and grown-ups). Its food is mostly a mash-up of various cuisines, but it’s also got traditional British dishes such as roast dinners
Tea Room, British, $$$
Yunting is a fairyland hidden in a hutong alley. Only those lucky enough to discover this spot can enjoy the afternoon tea buffet from the comfort of the cozy, flower-patterned sofa. It’s got a beautiful rooftop, where the owner keeps plants and a spirited parrot. Once you’re there, be sure to try the chocolate lava cake for an out-of-this-world taste sensation.