You are forgiven for becoming a creature of habit, but just in case you were wondering: there are new places in Beijing for you to get your cravings sorted out. What are you waiting for?
Part 1: Going Local
1. Nanguang Wei 南广味
Graduates from the Communication University of China Nanguang College invited their favorite chef in the college’s canteen to come to Beijing and open a restaurant. The Beef meatball hot pot is the most popular signature dish, simply because the handmade meatballs are tender and juicy and compliment the broth. Other options on the menu are also delicious, such as the Plain Boiled Chicken（白切鸡） which might sound dull, but works well with the broth and selection of vegetables.
Add: 171 Gulou West Street
Per capita: 41RMB
2. The Southern Fish 渔芙南
Arrive early in order to experience specialty ingredients shipped in directly from Hunan province. Once they’re gone, they’re gone – until the next shipment. Nonetheless, the best of the rest is very good as well.
Start with Lei Lajiao Pidan（擂辣椒皮蛋, RMB24). A mortar and pestle filled with roasted mild green chilies and crushed thousand-year eggs. The pungent yolks coat the colorful and spicy pepper in a brilliant combination of texture and flavor.
Nongjia Xiaochaorou（农家小炒肉, RMB23）is a very traditional preparation of pork belly stir-fried into a crackling and crispy texture with plenty of fresh thin green and red chilies. The version found here tastes authentic, though we couldn’t help but notice the large chili-to-pork ratio.
Nanfen Yutou（南粉鱼头, RMB48）features big chunks of white fish head in a thick, peppery broth enhanced with thick mung bean noodles. The fish head meat itself is nothing to write home about, but intrepid eaters should plumb the brothy depths for the elusive, unctuous eyeball.
The Southern Fish is a worthy addition to the city’s increasing number of small restaurants focused on the cuisine of the proprietor’s hometown, and a guaranteed pleasant meal for those who find themselves in the Dashilar area.
Add: 166 Yangmeizhu Xiejie
Tel: 010 8315 2539
Per capita: 72RMB
3. Tongue Memory 舌尖记忆
This eatery is fast becoming popular in Beijing and although the names sounds a bit…strange, the interior decoration assures you that there is nothing weird about it at all. Expect large French windows to look out onto the street (if you want) or just focus on their menu which is difficult to summarize and best of all inexpensive.
Add: L4, 88 Wangfujing Street
Tel: 021 5774 9244
Per capita: 58RMB
4. Daju Gangshi Chacanting 大咀港式茶餐厅
From snacks to drinks, these folks have all the authentic Hong Kong street flavors and style down to the finest detail. The decoration will remind you of a tea store somewhere in Tsim Sha Tsui. We recommend the Silk Stocking Milk Tea（丝袜奶茶）which is rich in flavor and is smooth and silky. Try a wide range of snacks and sit back and relax with a good book, or in so many cases these days: an iPad.
Add: 3F, Huiju Xihongmen Shopping Mall, Daxing District
Tel: 010 5095 4709
Per capita: 80RMB
5. Hankou Jietou 汉口街头
This restaurant brings you a plethora of snacks from Hunan province and signature dishes that go for as little as 9RMB. Therefore it is no wonder that you have line up for a long time whenever you decide to dine there. The Xiaogan Rice Wine with Glutinous Rice Balls（孝感米酒汤圆）might be too sweet at first, but you will find yourself finishing the entire bowl. Hot and Dry Noodles（热干面）comes in a generous serving with a beautifully-flavored sauce.
Add: 3F, Glory Mall, Docheng District
Tel: 010 8755 5306
Per capita: 57RMB
Part 2: Speciality Dishes
1. Yue Yu 越域
The owner invested about 6 million RMB over a period of two years to decorating this restaurant. All plants were imported from Thailand and each plant maintains its own watering system. Once you enter the restaurant, you will feel like you have been transported to a tropical rain forest. This is Beijing’s first restaurant that prepares Teppanyaki with a Southeast Asian flair. Each table is equipped with a master who serves up your Teppanyaki at your table for you to see . This is is sure to add value to your dining experience and perhaps to appreciate your dinner a little bit more.
Add: NO. 16-17, 4F, Longhu Changyin Tianjie Shopping Mall, Chaoyang District
Tel: 010 6576 9985
Per capita: 108RMB
2. Yuwei Chuanxiang 渔味川香
Yuwei Chuanxiang has their fish flown in fresh (and alive) to ensure a far more fresh and tender taste. Their signature dish aptly named:”Spicy Fish” is accompanied with a richly-flavored and fragrant soup. The Boiled Fish with Pickled Cabbage and Chili（酸菜鱼）dish and homemade Syrup of Plum（酸梅汤）are highly recommended as well.
Add: 7 xiaoying East Road, Chaoyang District
Tel: 010 8436 8108
Per capita: 83RMB
3. TIGERTOPOKI 泰一阁
Korean star Lee Kwang Soo is the official spokesperson for TIGERTOPOKI, which made this restaurant popular among his fans. All raw materials are from South Korea and you will be taught how to truly enjoy Korean New Year Cake Hot Pot（韩式年糕火锅) while Fried Rice with Cheese（芝士炒饭）is a winner after enjoying hot pot.
Add: 1F, NO. 410 Q-MART, Wangjingxiyuan
Tel: 010 6475 8211
Per capita: 66RMB
Part 3: Noodles
1. Tu Ye Noodle 兔爷制面
A very unique little eatery owned by a local Beijinger promises the finest hand-made noodles served in a fine and authentic fashion. That’s all we need to hear, right?
Address: Zhao Wai yi Street No. 6 Zhaowai SOHO-A block 3th floor 3012
Phone: 010 5900 5901
Per capita: 26RMB
2. Coarse Taste Noodle 粗粮味道面
This small restaurant opened after the owner returned from his world travels. He took the time to develop the dishes by himself until satisfied. You will find that the portions here are quite large and it has become known that the owner is quite good at developing new tastes and flavors. It has also come under our attention that office workers in the area have been flocking to this awesome new place. Get there early, then!
Address: Sanlitun SOHO3 square 1329
Per capita: 30RMB
3. Yi Dan Tiao 乙擔挑
A simple and clean eatery with elements of a Taiwanese night market where you can enjoy not only their well-favored beef noodles, but also seasonal dishes. Set-meals offer you value for your money and while you are at it, make sure to try the fried dumplings. You won’t regret it.
Address: Aegean Sea shopping center 5th floor (near Windsor KTV)
Phone: 010 8424 0620
Per capita: 37RMB
Part 4: Celebrity-owned
1. ChiYan General Carbon Burning Meat House 赤焰将军炭火烧肉屋
The restaurant is personally managed by supermodel Jin Dachuan in a stylish setting and easy-going environment. What also helps is that tables are spaced decently enough from each other so that you can enjoy a quiet meal. Various signature dishes appear on the menu and should you be up for it, try out their peach or strawberry wines. If that does not tickle your fancy, you might want to look into their Belgian beer selection. A good spot for having dinner and drinks with friends.
Address: East of Dong bai international times Street
Per capita: 112RMB
2. Nice meeting you 很高兴遇见你
Han Han, a best-selling author and rally driver opens his first restaurant in Beijing with a Michelin Chef to cook up a storm and manage the kitchen of this cutely-named store.
Address: Chaoyang Joy City 6th floor 6F-17
Phone: 010 8551 8867
Per capita: 110RMB
3. J.Man J大侠
Jay’s first restaurant in mainland China attracted thousands of people who were waiting in line to get a taste of what the in queue on its opening ceremony. A great place for fans since they have the star’s music as well as videos playing on the large screen TV’s, but when it comes to the menu, you can expect decent food in a modern setting.
Address: Chaoyang Joy City 6F-24
Per capita: 105RMB
Part 5: Afternoon Tea
1. Ms. Mood
There is a small western-style building between Nanluoguxiang and Jiaodaokou which is not easy to find. The environment here is ancient and glorious. The shape and taste of the desserts enjoy a great reputation and on the plus-side you will find that even the waiters here are all good-looking. Don’t miss red velvet cake and the three-storey tower cake which the owner claims is the most affordable in Beijing.
Address: Nanluogu Lane Ju’er Hutong No. 7 Rong Lufu
Per capita: 117RMB
2. Fauvism Town 野兽派小镇
The first floor serves as their specialized flower shop where you might feel like you are Alice in Wonderland. The second floor is where the smell of fresh flowers meets the fragrance of desserts and coffee. A beautiful place where you will be sure to find many folk taking selfies and enjoying cheerful conversation over some afternoon drinks.
Address: No. 19 Sanlitun Road, Sanlitun Southern Pacific
Per capita: 130RMB
3. Godot Garden 戈多花园
Make your way up to the second floor if you feel like kicking back on a sofa with a few friends or if you are flying solo. The second floor will surprise you with a glass ceiling, flowers everywhere and upon entering, expect to be greeted by the local parrot. Godot Garden has become famous for their rose-flavored drinks and flowerpot cakes. If you are lucky, you might find time on a day when it is not so crowded, just so that you can savor the tranquil environment and treat yourself to some delicious desserts.
Address: North Luo Lane No. 57
Phone: 010 6400 6432
Per capita: 53RMB
Part 6: Snacks
1. Chuan Tang 串堂
The waiters here will assist you and take your order by presenting the actual snacks on their menu to you. They have a wide variety of skewered everything available and thus, it is very difficult to pin-point their stand-out item. Reservations can only be made for 6 – 7 PM, so be sure to book in advance, Otherwise, try your luck to see what they still have available.
Address: Chunxiu road happy village community (west side of Jiezuo building)
Phone: 010 8440 0711
Per capita: 89RMB
2. Lian Nuan Chu Cha 恋暖初茶
Everything in this cute little spot is hand-made instead of using the quick and easy blending techniques. Hot and cold tea drinks along with tea-infused snacks are what sells best. Expect fresh taste and plenty of originality.
Address: Chaoyang Joy City B1-49
Phone: 010 8583 7911
Per capita: 15RMB
3. ICE STORY 梦想家
Ice Story is originally a South Korea concept so, you can expect to find plenty of cuteness in their Nanluoguxiang store. Lean against the electric blue wall for some epic selfies or just opt for some serious snacking while you savor their Clouds and Honeycomb ice cream…It’s almost too adorable to eat.
Address: Nanluogu Lane NO.15
Per capita: 28RMB