Why spice is nice

By Ye Jun
Updated: 2009-12-19 09:35
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Why spice is nice

Meizhou Dongpo Sichuan Restaurant's vineyard branch (眉州东坡葡萄庄园) in Cuigezhuang is an upgrade of the popular Sichuan restaurant. With more than 30 branches in Beijing, this chain is one of the best outlets for Sichuan cuisine in the capital.

Cuigezhuang township is on Jingshun Lu just outside the Fifth Ring Road, with an emerging restaurant area that includes such names as The Orchard and Green T House.

The vineyard branch's specialties are supposed to be even more authentic. The Meizhou Dongpo sausage (原味眉州东坡香肠) is truly meaty and sumptuous. Preserved spare pork ribs (腊味排骨) and hairtail in brown sauce (酱香带鱼) are two other good starters.

For the main course, try smoked duck (樟茶鸭), a traditional classic. Dry pot baby cabbage (干锅娃娃菜) is a tasty way to sample this vegetable. As a Sichuan restaurant, Meizhou Dongpo offers plenty of spicy dishes, such as poached sliced pork in hot chili oil (水煮肉片), and spicy and tongue-numbing bean curd with minced pork (麻婆豆腐), another long-time classic.

The restaurant's location near farmlands allows it to use plenty of fresh, organic vegetables. Lastly, try typical Sichuan dim sums, such as sticky glutinous rice ball wrapped in reed (叶儿粑), dandan noodles (担担面) and glutinous rice balls served in rice wine soup (醪糟汤圆).

Average cost is a worthwhile 50 yuan per person. The restaurant has a spacious public hall decorated with traditional Chinese furniture. Service is attentive. It is a good choice for a weekend lunch.

Daily 9:30 am-10 pm. 3 km to the east of Shunbai Lu, Cuigezhuang township, Chaoyang district. Or turn left at Laiguangying Donglu, right at the third traffic light, left at the next three-way crossroad, and drive on until you arrive. 189-1055-1006. 朝阳区催各庄奶东村林业站东. 京顺路直行至顺白路左转,向西直行,吉祥寺桥东200米