My recent travels brought me to Beijing. I had visited Beijing prior two or three years ago and one of the restaurants I was excited about then was Country Kitchen. Country Kitchen is Rosewood hotel’s popularly visited restaurant serving traditional Chinese dishes that you won’t find soon in other restaurants. Chef Leon Chai, a Beijinger, aims to bring the broad range of Chinese cuisines (from Cantonese to Sichuan, Hunan and Northern Chinese) to Country Kitchen, all with a local touch and local produce.
Country Kitchen is designed in a stunning ambient setting with red stone walls, dark colored woods and copper tableware. I love the aesthetics of the place. It’s reminiscent of an ancient Chinese eatery, in a modern and elegant setting.
On the menu there’s a variety of dishes. From a fragrant spinach with sesame sauce dish to a delicious chilled jelly with chili oil dish and wok fried crispy pork in a sweet and sour chili sauce. The only way to eat at Country Kitchen is by ordering a table full of food because there’s so much to try from the menu. My favorite – a dish we don’t have yet in the Netherlands – is Beijing style hand pulled noodles served with a soybean paste and vegetables and pickles. Dishes like these make me want to stay in Beijing a bit longer to really get to know the traditional Beijing and Northern Chinese cuisine.
The day I visited Country Kitchen was a regular Tuesday afternoon and yet the place was packed. There wasn’t an empty table left. Interestingly enough, when I asked my local friends and friends who are now expats in Beijing about what restaurants I should visit in Beijing, Country Kitchen was named by all. Which doesn’t quite surprise me. I have come to know and love the restaurant as well. The service is first of all excellent. And the food is like tasting little places of China all at once. Different cuisines, old and new, fused together in one menu.
If you ever visit Beijing, Country Kitchen should definitely be on your list!