FooDiva in the Forbidden City
Wednesday, 1st September, Beijing: FooDiva’s first foodie experience in the Forbidden City got off to a heavenly start last night – just two words really Beijing duck (otherwise known as Peking duck). It’s always been top of my list of Chinese foodie delights, and after last night it shall continue to be. ‘Da Dong’ which has three restaurants in the capital specialises in Beijing duck – we visited the newest and nearest one to our hotel. By the way Hilton Beijing Wangfujing certainly lives up to its excellent boutiquey reputation – the walk-in-wardrobe alone is enough to make any gal book a room! Check out the beautifully presented in-room foodie amenity below – the cherries dipped in dark chocolate are divine.
Da Dong’s claim to fame is duck that is less fatty than normal if that’s possible, yet still as mouth-watering. Slick monochrome lacquer decor, high ceilings and a central kitchen to view the chefs weave their magic with wood-roasted duck. Accompanied with slither thin, fresh steamed pancakes, and an array of condiments – not just your usual plum sauce, spring onions and cucumbers. The duck was to tender and juicy (all-be-it less fatty)…just divine. We also ordered prawns marinated in mustard, and some deep fried cuttle fish…and chrysanthemum tea. I can’t wait to return, hopefully I can squeeze in another visit before I leave.
Weather in Beijing is now late 20’s, just perfect for sightseeing even though it’s a tad grey and smoggy. The Forbidden City (with its never-ending halls and pagodas) and Tiananmen Square are all historical must-see’s, as is the Lama Temple – the largest Buddhist temple outside Tibet complete with a magnificent 18-metre high sandalwood statue of the Maitreya Buddha.
Jingshan Park makes for a beautiful stroll, you can even watch couples learning to tango.
We wandered through the traditional ‘hutong’ alleyways and onto the Houhai district set on a lake surrounded by cafes – a bit tacky to be honest. Best seen at night time I say!
Xeixie for now.