Beijing Da Dong - eggplant

Enjoying true Chinese cuisine – where else but in China

Zhujiajiao water town in Shanghai. Several restaurants along the waterway.

China in 2013. We traveled around on a private tour, just my wife and I, a different personal guide in each location: Shanghai, Huangshan, Beijing, Xi’an, Guilin, Yangshuo – in that sequence. We explored Hong Kong for a few days on our own, on the way back to Canada.

One of our principal aims was to learn what Chinese cuisine should be. What better place to discover this apart from China herself? Coming back to Canada, we discovered that the China experience transformed us gastronomically-speaking: it became difficult to enjoy once again the local restaurant fare – that which we knew and liked beforehand was no longer adequate. It just wasn’t the same.

Here are some of that which we tried and loved.

(Hover on image to reveal its caption.)

In our minds, the Da Dong restaurant in Beijing deserves a special section for their spectacular specialty, roast duck. We used to call this dish “Peking Duck.” What better way to savour this delicacy, this Peking Duck, than in Beijing (formerly spelt Peking) itself.

Paradoxically, Hong Kong was both familiar and new. Familiar because Cantonese cuisine is predominant in North America . New because never before have we seen and tasted dim sum so excellently prepared and presented.

We were in China in 2013. Since that time, we haven’t yet found a local restaurant that is truly able to elevate us to relive those moments. The closest one to do so for us when it comes to dim sum just opened in Brossard, south of Montreal: the Imperial.

The Imperial at Brossard
The highly recommended dim sum at the Imperial in Brossard, Quebec.

My wife Grace now prepares excellent Chinese-style cuisine. My true opinion at the risk of sounding biased: Grace’s creations are much better than what we would be served in a local restaurant. Grace is learning a lot of excellent Chinese culinary skills from the Lau family’s youtube channel: MadeWithLau or their website. Highly recommended.

Just one example of Grace’s creations: the sticky rice in lotus leaf. Best I’ve had anywhere. For comparison, check the photo of the Hong Kong version above.

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