No trip to Beijing is complete without trying the city’s specialty: Peking duck. This delicacy emerged during the Ming Dynasty and was the meal of choice in the Forbidden City. It has been a staple in Beijing cuisine ever since. Pekin ducks are specifically bred for use in the dish. After the duck is slaughtered and de-feathered, air is pumped in through the neck to separate skin and fat. It is then boiled and left to dry, before finally being cooked in a closed or hung oven.
The meat is tender, and the skin is crispy and brown. Waiters will usually carve the bird at your table. You take the meat and some spring onions; wrap them in a small rice pancake, and finish by dipping in a special sauce. The result is magnificent. It’s not hard to see why this is considered a delicacy. The meal also comes with a variety of appetizers.
There’s no shortage of restaurants serving Peking Duck in Beijing, but these three are the most famous.
The ducks here are known for being lean. The menu is extensive, and it’s not just the duck that’s delectable. Be sure to try as many appetizers as you can.
Location: There are three locations throughout the Dongcheng and Chaoyang Districts.
Telephone: +86 010 8522 1234
Though it has moved multiple times in the intervening years, this restaurant has been serving Peking Duck since 1416. The presentation isn’t as flattering as at the other two restaurants, but the duck speaks for itself.
Address: 2a Chongwenmenwai Dajie, Chongwen, Beijing
Telephone: +86 010 6712 0505
The most famous Peking Duck restaurant in China, Quanjude dates back to the 1850s and is a popular destination for tourists. It’s also more expensive. The ducks tend to be fattier here. There are several locations throughout the city.
Tlelephone: +86 010 6302 3062