South Beauty

So, before the Olympics ends, I thought I'd slide in a more than predictable restaurant recommendation for Beijing, to add to your Steingarten recommendations

It was nearly five years ago that I was in Beijing (on my honeymoon after being married in Yokohama with Kjam in attendance), but the memory of this meal still lingers

After a tough day climbing, around 36 turrets of the great wall.....(things to do before you die: climb great wall - tick) we managed to drag our sorry tired legs out for the evening and headed to South Beauty inside the World Trade Centre for dinner

South Beauty is an upmarket chain restaurant serving Sichuan food. And though I've never been to Sichuan and cannot therefore attest to its "authenticity", it was by my humble standards, a damn good meal.

We ordered the selection of cold appetisers, the spicy crab, the south beauty tofu and the Number One South Beauty Dish

The appetisers and crab were good, but not mind blowing.


The tofu, on the other hand, was amazing. A chef appeared at our table and made fresh tofu, then a waitress doled it into little bowls and added savoury toppings. It was warm and creamy, and although memory fails me as to what exactly the toppings were I remember they were salty and sharp and balanced with the tofu perfectly.




The number one dish emerged as a bowl of seasoned oil into which a piping hot mineral stone is placed

This sends hot oil spitting all over the place....which is where the table cloth comes in handy


Then thinly sliced veal is added and cooked briefly, fished out once the oil splatter dies down. Yes it is oily, but not in an over bearing way and when eaten with the tofu, balanced things out well again.


although there are many places on my "to go and eat list" in the world, Beijing eats are hard to beat in my book.


    looks yummy... the tofu sounds like a version of the famous flower bean curd?
    I tried making it at home, it was abysmal...


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