Beijing boasts a large number of quality restaurants for all tastes and budgets. In the past few years, the Chinese capital has seen an increase in fine-dining institutions alongside China’s rapid financial development.
Today, you can enjoy some of the world’s best high-end cuisine in Beijing with Culture Trip’s line-up of Chinese and international fine-dining establishments below.
Housed in a complex that is part of a 600-year-old temple, TRB Hutong juxtaposes traditional and modern architecture to rich effect. The contemporary European menu includes pigeon, wagyu beef and – for dessert – millefeuille, while special touches like amuse-bouches really help make TRB stand out. TRB Hutong’s sister restaurant TRB Forbidden City is equally luxe, offering stately views of the Forbidden City and the same warm hospitality and sublime cuisine.
One of the most exclusive Italian restaurants in the capital, Opera Bombana is the vision of three-Michelin-star chef Umberto Bombana. Dishes such as the home-made tagliolini and veal chop showcase simple yet refined flavours, while an extensive list of mostly Italian wines provides plenty of options to help soak up the rich food. Opera Bombana is located in Beijing’s Parkview Green, a striking green building that combines art gallery, shopping and office space – worth a visit, even if you’re not dining.
This ultra-high-end restaurant is a calming spot to enjoy a ‘royal’ vegetarian meal in Beijing. Although an all-vegetarian restaurant in China may have been hard to come by in the past, healthy eating is all the rage now: elegant Beijingers flock to sample the restaurant’s unique offerings, including beverages like ‘oatmeal nut-melange so soy’. Located opposite the Yonghegong Lama Temple, the restaurant’s serene atmosphere belies the bustling hutong outside. The menu features creative takes on Chinese classics, such as vegetarian Peking ‘duck’ and sweet-and-sour lotus shoots, while a full-time harpist adds to the relaxed, classical vibes. What’s more, the restaurant carefully chooses its ingredients from local farms to provide a refreshing experience for the mind, body and soul.
From Danish design brand Georg Jensen comes The Georg, a self-titled ‘casual fine-dining’ restaurant that embodies the epitome of Nordic cool. Located beside a reimagined canal walkway in a pretty, tranquil area of old Beijing, The Georg supplies modern Danish food in a traditional two-storey Beijing courtyard. The menu is intriguingly vague, with each dish marked solely by its main components (‘chocolate, banana, hazelnut’; ‘shrimp, egg, tarragon’), yet each item sings with a fresh and consummate flavour. Generous natural light, courtesy of a vaulted glass ceiling, complements industrial design for an intimate, relaxed environment. A bar, showroom and event space complete the stylish space.
Based on the top floor of the Park Hyatt, China Grill boasts 360-degree views of Beijing, which is especially stunning at night. The menu is largely meat-oriented, though a generous variety of seafood, salads, soups and Chinese-inspired dishes is available. The open kitchen (a popular feature among high-end restaurants in Beijing) adds vibrancy, while an exhaustive wine list completes the high-class proceedings. China Grill is modern, sleek and particularly alluring with its 65th-floor views that will make you feel like you’re dining in the clouds.
The gold standard of French dining in the city of Beijing, Maison FLO is loved for its consistently excellent food and efficient service. Established in the ’90s, Maison FLO radiates relaxed class. Large and airy, the dining room is all cherry leather sofas, bronze sculptures and stained-glass windows. Outside, a sunny terrace and garden provide a charming setting. The menu includes a range of French classics like foie gras, escargots and mushroom soup, as well as a selection of French wines. For a level of sophistication fit for business lunches and romance alike, Maison FLO covers all the bases.
For a more local high-end taste, it doesn’t get any better than Da Dong. The Beijing roast duck chain is known for using a wood-fired oven rather than the traditional square type, which results in the restaurant’s famous crispy-skinned duck. It also has a sleeker, more modern interior than the capital’s other more conventional duck restaurants. There’s more to Da Dong than just duck, though, with a wide and expansive menu including stunning renditions of classic Chinese dishes such as sweet-and-sour whole fish and kung pao prawns. Its restaurants in Shanghai have earned Michelin stars, and it opened a branch in New York City last year. Plus, it counts former US First Lady Michelle Obama as a past guest, so, you know, it’s practically royalty.