Top 10 Beijing Imperial Cuisine Restaurants

According to the different people it served, Beijing imperial cuisine is divided into imperial court cuisine and imperial official cuisine.

The imposing restaurant serves Imperial CuisineImperial Court Cuisine is a style of food with origins in the Imperial Palace. Based on foods served to the Emperor and his court, Imperial Court Cuisine is well-known by the original features of the raw material and carefully selected ingredients. Additionally, the dishes are decorated by different colorful vegetables and fruits carved into various shapes. Each dish has a propitious name, such as Yu Feng Huan Chao (jade phoenix returning to the royal). And some of them even have short stories. Today Imperial Court Cuisine has become a major school of Chinese cooking with several places offering this unique flavor. Fang Shan in Beihai Park and Ting Li Guan in the Summer Palace are the best ones. This imperial cuisine was not available 150 years ago. While expensive, it is worth trying.

Imperial official cuisine is particular to this city. In the past, local officials were all very picky about what type of food they ate. The most famous type of Official food is Tan Family Food, available in the Beijing Hotel. This is the preferred food of the Qing Dynasty (1644 -1911) official Tan Zongling, and was later introduced into restaurants. Another type of food is described in the classic novel, Dream of Red Mansions. The author, Cao Xueqin, described a number of dishes in the book and now there are several restaurants that serve this style of dish. The most famous place in this city is the Grand View Garden Hotel next to it modeled after the garden described in the Dream of Red Mansions.

Top 10 Beijing Imperial Cuisine Restaurants


1. Fangshan Restaurant

Chinese name: 仿膳饭庄(fǎng shàn fàn zhuāng)
Located in Beihai Park, Fangshan Restaurant is the most famous one offering the luxurious Chinese court food. The restaurant was opened in 1925 by imperial chefs of the former Qing Dynasty (1644-1911) and caused a great sensation at that time. Fangshan means ‘imitate the Beijing imperial cuisine' in Chinese. The restaurant is made up of three parts and it can hold 500 people eating at the same time. It is decorated in imperial style with the design of dragon and phoenix. Here is the best place to experience the life of the Chinese emperors in former days. Now, it serves nearly 800 kinds of Imperial Court Dishes. Among them, Man-Han Banquet is the most famous.
Average cost per person: CNY150 - CNY200
Hours: 11:00-14:00, 17:00-20:30
Location: No. 1, Wenjin Street, Xicheng District (inside Beihai Park)
Bus Route: 3, 13, 42, 107, 111, 118, 612, 701 (get off at North Gate of Beihai)

2. Li Family Restaurant

Chinese name: 厉家菜(lì jiā cài)
The dish of Imperial Cuisine is well decorated.Located in a courtyard of No. 11, Yangfang hutong, Denei Avenue in this city, there is a special restaurant named Li Family Restaurant (Li Jia Cai Restaurant) which is devoted to Imperial Court food. The initiator of Li Jia Cai is Li Shanlin, a retired professor of mathematics, who also has great interest in cooking genuine Beijing Imperial Court Food. The dinner here is by set menu starting at CNY 298/person. That is to say, a guest can not order a dish but a set of dishes. There are no chemical materials in the dishes, all flavorings are natural. This restaurant has welcomed many celebrities including Bill Gates, the former premier of Britain, John Major, and Chinese superstar Jackie Chan. Professor Li speaks English and can discuss Chinese culture while you enjoy your dinner and good wine. If you are a real gourmand, try to find this restaurant hidden in a hutong. There is also another Li Family Restaurant in the city, located at No.77, Dongtangzi Hutong, Dongcheng District.

3. Ting Li Guan Restaurant

Chinese name: 听骊馆(tīng lí guān)
The table delicacies in Ting Li Guan Restaurant absorb the essence of the Eight Cuisines in China and combine the Han Cuisine with the other cuisines of minority groups such as Man, Mongol and Hui.
Average cost per person: CNY 232
Location: at the south of Wanshou Hill, inside the Summer Palace, No. 19, New Jiangongmen Road
Bus Route: 303, 331, 346, 394, 563, 584, 894 (get off at Beigongmen Stop)

4. Yushan Restaurant

Chinese name: 御膳饭店(yù shàn fàn diàn)
The layout of the restaurant follows the imperial palace with luxurious decoration. When eating in the restaurant, diners are served by waitresses in traditional imperial costumes.
Average cost per person: CNY90 - CNY105
Hours: 06:00 - 09:30, 10:30 - 14:00, 16:30 - 20:30
Location: No.87, Tiantan Road, Dongcheng District
Bus Route: 6, 34, 35, 36, 72, 106, 110 (get off at North Gate of Tiantan Stop)

5. Tan Jia Cai Restaurant

Chinese name: 谭家菜(tán jiā cài)
Average Cost per Person: CNY1,000 - CNY 1,200
Hours: 11:30 - 14:00, 17:30 - 21:00
Location: 7/F, Unit C, Beijing Hotel, 33, East Changan Street, Dongcheng District
Bus Route: 41, 52, 120, 140 (get off at Wangfujing Stop)

6. Da Zhai Men

The dishes and snacks cooked in this restaruant are worthy to have a try. And, the traditional performances at night is one of the restaurant's highlights.
Chinese name: 大宅门 ( dà zhái mén )
Average Cost per Person: CNY150-CNY200
Location of Changping Branch: 23, Fuxue Road, Changping District

7. Hua Jia Yi Yuan

Chinese name: 花家怡园 ( huā jiā yí yuán )
Average Cost per Person: CNY200 - CNY300
Wangfujing Branch: No. 8, East Wangfujing Street, Dongcheng District
Huixin Branch: No. 6, East Huixin Street, Chaoyang District

8. Da Xi Lou

Chinese name: 大戏楼 ( dà xì lóu )
Average Cost per Person: CNY100 - CNY300
Location: 1000 meters south of Pingfang, East 5th Ring Road, Chaoyang District

9. Haitang Ju

Chinese name: 海棠居(hǎi tang jū)
Average Cost per Person: CNY180 - CNY200
Haitang Ju (Huangsi Branch)
Location: No. Jia 3, Huangsi Avenue, Xicheng District

10. Han Zhen Yuan

Chinese name: 涵珍园(huì zhēn lóu fàn zhuāng)
Location: No. 20, Qinlao Hutong, Dongcheng District

- Last updated on Nov. 22, 2019 -
Questions & Answers on Top 10 Beijing Imperial Cuisine Restaurants
Asked by larraine duckworth from AUSTRALIA | Mar. 28, 2015 02:30Reply
could you write "Badaling Hot Springs resort" in mandarin for me
we need this address in mandarin to show to taxi/bus/train drivers. we will be arriving at the international airport and staying in Beijing city for 2 nights (Novotel peace) then at the resort for 6 days. need to know what train/bus to catch getting there from Novotel Peace. Also need to know what bus to catch for the airport from Badaling hot springs. Any info would be greatly appreciated. Apparently staff at the resort don't speak much English.
Answers (1)
Answered by Ema from YEMEN | Mar. 28, 2015 04:49

Address: 北京市延庆县妫水北街1号
You can take a taxi to North Railway Station to take the S2 train to Yanqing. Upon arrival in Yanqing Train Station, you can take the bus Y06 to the resort directly.

When you go back to the airport you need to take a bus or taxi to Yanqing train station, where you can take the train to North Railway Station. Then walk about 700 yards to Xizhimen Outer Station, you can take the airport Shijitan line to the airport.
Asked by Ed from NEW ZEALAND | May. 18, 2014 06:25Reply
Drunken Empress Chicken
I have heard of a dish called "Drunken Empress Chicken". What is the chinese name for that, and can you suggest a good restaurant for me to try it?
Answers (3)
Answered by Chen | May. 19, 2014 03:04

I think you may mean the chicken soaked in Shaoxing Wine and we call it "醉鸡" in Chinese.

The lacal Min Restaurant is suggested to have a try. If you want to know the closest branch of this restaruant, you may need to tell me your more specific place for me.
Answered by Ed from NEW ZEALAND | May. 19, 2014 05:56

Thanks a lot Chen! That will be Wangfujing.
Answered by Chen | May. 19, 2014 22:30

If so, you can go to the Mall at Oriental Plaza at No. 1, East Chang'an Street.

The Shanghai Min Restaurant is Store CC18, 1B. You can follow the direction boards in the mall to find this restaurant.
Asked by Audrey from SINGAPORE | Apr. 02, 2013 01:23Reply
Any good restaurant nearby Swissotel Beijing
Answers (1)
Answered by Lucia from AUSTRALIA | Apr. 02, 2013 02:28

There are many nice restaurants within walking distance around the hotel. You can easily find one according to your favor.
Asked by Mr.Alice from USA | Apr. 05, 2011 18:50Reply
Which of these restaurant is a must try in Beijing? Any suggestion?
Answers (2)
Answered by Mr.David | Apr. 05, 2011 20:53

Fangshan Restaurant( 仿膳饭庄)Located in Beihai Park, Fangshan is the most famous one offering the luxurious Imperial Court Cuisine. It is decorated in imperial style with the design of dragon and phoenix. Here is the best place to experience the life of the Chinese emperors in former days. Now, it serves nearly 800 kinds of Imperial Court Dishes. It is really worth your taste.
Answered by Mr.Alice from USA | Apr. 06, 2011 11:43

Thanks David.
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