The Dean Website. AKA The Exploded Micro-Family
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Category — Restaurants generally

A positive restaurant review for once (Hatsune @ the Sanlitun Village)

The newly opened Hatsune restaurant at the Village in Sanlitun is most probably going to become one of the dining hotspots there, as they have actually managed to really produce the goods in a setting that is slightly unusual (seas of dangling (paper?) fishes from the ceiling) and in one of the few places in Beijing that seems to be a moderately successful ‘shopping mall experience’. [Read more →]

August 29, 2009   2 Comments

More delayed musings on the state of eating (Chinese) in Beijing – and may the New Rat be a good one for you all!

I know there are zillions of places out there about eating in Beijing and how great it all is. So I keep on asking myself why is it that when asked ‘where do you want to go and eat tonight?’ I have *no answer*, I just don’t feel like there is anywhere that I can say – ‘yes let’s go there’. Nothing where you can eat reasonably good food, that is not more than 75 kuai/person (and let me tell you that this is a *lot* of money for most Beijingren who will eat for about 10 kuai or preferably less, usually max 20 kuai, including beer), that is not (ab)using oil that has been thrice recycled or taken from a sump, and where MSG and salt are used sparingly.

[Read more →]

February 16, 2008   3 Comments

Merry Christmas to all of you who come by here (and that includes all the robots as well :-)

Quick rant about our Xmas dinner at Feichang Thai (Very Siam) here in Beijing as it justs sucks to have to eat such fake thai when the place *was* so good in the past. Nothing is permanent here, and here is further proof of Beijing’s rapid descent *down* the culinary scales as people forgo authenticity in lieu of crass and in your face ‘trendyness’. It seems it is easier to make money selling crap wrapped up in gold leaf rather than making the effort of doing the real thing.

My wife asked me soon after we ordered ‘why are there so many dongbeiren serving us here?’ and it all clicked into place. I was the only paleface in the joint, last year it was full of them. It has changed its target clientele and is now aiming for the clueless hip ‘nouveau riche’ chinese and serves up Thai dishes that taste as if designed by a Dongbei chef. From the deep fried mandarin fish in sweet and sour sauce that looks and tastes exactly like a poor man’s song shu gui yu (but it ain’t cheap) to the Tom Yum soup that is tasteless and totally lacking in anything except maybe the name of the packet that it came out of to the masaman curry that is just totally weird and bears no relationship to the real thing. Oh and the ‘vietnamese spring rolls’ even had a layer of sugar to crunch on and no mint at all. Looked and tasted just like pillows. For 360 kuai per couple (and with only 1 beer! imagine how much if you buy drinks for two!) it is just a total waste of your money. Cool for dating clueless Dongbeiren though 😉 Looks nice, but it is all so shallow.

If you want real thai in Beijing, try somewhere else! (Purple Haze?)

December 25, 2007   2 Comments

Gisa, at Chaoyang West Gate. DO NOT BOTHER GOING THERE! I REPEAT, DO NOT GO!

Its’ when you read stuff like this here http://travel.yahoo.com/p-travelguide-2760792-ristorante_italiano_gisa_beijing-i that you wonder how much these people got paid to write this non review.

We went to Gisa’s today. Having not been before and having an Italian recommend it I thought, cool, must be good.

This place sucks. I am actually quite angry at having been given this pretense of Italian food, this lame excuse for food and with service that was really creepy. My wife felt that they waiters were trying to ‘take our clothes off’ they were so prompt to remove dishes and so cold about it. What also got my goat is that they have a white face as part of the ‘service’ who must be feeling pretty slimy given the quality of food served. Even the pizzaioli seemed to be having a laugh at the customers’ expense when making the pizzas, as if they know they were utter crap.

Salad. Rucola. At least the rucola was fresh. I can do a better salad myself.

Pizza. Tuna pizza. DO NOT PRETEND THIS IS A GOOD PIZZA! It sucks. thin crust pizza. one thin layer of tomato sauce *with a minuscule amount of tuna blended in*. this is a joke, right? Oh sorry, a bit of oregano on top of that. You want 60 kuai for that? Sorry what is that you just went and shoved up my arse?, it did not feel nice.

Fish. Forgotten what fish it was, at least I don’t think I will get food poisoning, but the description sounded nice. at 95 kuai it should taste nice and look ok. Sorry you get a 3 out of 10 for your efforts.

Three dishes + one qingdao. 220 RMB. What did that feel worth? 40 RMB.

Will we be going back? NEVER! Should you go? NEVER!!!!

Why do people accept such crap food under some guise of western food? Are we all f-ing mad?

We did not complain at the restaurant. We ate all the food. We were hungry and it was expensive. But we feel cheated and unhappy at levels of everything.

There are lots of other good restaurants out there. Need I mention ASSAGGI? If you want good food, at a reasonable (although not cheap) price level, with a varied menu, *very* good lunch menu that often changes, really pleasant atmosphere and service (I must recommend their service, very very professional and pleasant). http://www.thatsbj.com/directory/venue/Assaggi/67 for details. Will reopen soonish, looks a bit of a mess for the mo 😉

Go to Gisa? Ma vaffanculo!

Current mood? pissed. in a way that only bad restaurants get me.

February 3, 2007   14 Comments

Food Tube

hmm. just stumbled across a fellow Beijingwaiguoren but he is not very vegetarian. Dogs, silkworms and all other things delicious and edible. Check him out 🙂

2008-12-27 , it looks like the link is dead and has been for some time, will come back with better ones soon.

December 15, 2006   Comments Off on Food Tube

Another restaurant to avoid: Silk Road Restaurant on Nuren Jie ????

This is some sort of folklore infested tourist restaurant. A Xinjiang flamenco band was making our eardrums bleed. It has been around for a long time but today was our first time there. And it will be our last! It is on the West Gate of Nuren Jie (Super Bar Street, not very super), near the flower market, and is usually quite crowded, normally a good sign.

We only had two dishes, one is the usual Kao Nang with mutton in a tomato sauce. The mutton is OK, the tomato sauce out of a tin with lots of oil. The vegetable dish was cooked ok but had LOTS of MSG and sugar to make it taste nice.

100 RMB for this, one beer and one yang rou chuanr. Forget it! Any of the small hole in the wall Xinjiang places can do better than that.

November 8, 2006   Comments Off on Another restaurant to avoid: Silk Road Restaurant on Nuren Jie ????

Hong Kong restaurant on Chaoyang West Gate

Just for info, the HK restaurant not far from infamous Annies, just next to the very avoidable Guizhou Suan Tang Yu place, I am sorry but cannot remember its name, however its decor is less HK than Beijing with less lanterns, anyways, avoid going there. After having a awful stone hotpot of fishballs, vermicelli noodles and xiao bai cai, in curry sauce, curry sauce from a packet, fish balls from a freezer, decided that yes, Chaoyang West Gate is really a culinary dump :-(((

October 5, 2006   2 Comments