In Praise of the Chinese Palette

From sharp, sweet, oily Shanghainese and fiery Sichuan to fresh, delicate Cantonese, seafood-dominated Chaozhou and "strange flavor" Hunan, all of China's Eight Major Cuisine are represented in the restaurants, fast-food eateries and street vendor locations of Beijing. Invented, developed and refined throughout thousands of years of Imperial China, the Beijing cuisine and its Peking Duck centerpiece have a special spot in the hearts of the natives of the national capital.

For the visitor, it's just a matter of choice. Similarly, there will be a restaurant if the choice is to forego Chinese in favor of the world's other great foods, whether European, African, Asian or North American. There are even places like the Black Earth and Old Three Gredes in which to sample the "basic survival" nostalgia cuisine dishes, just as there are outlets that serve up McDonald's, Kentucky Friend chicken and Pizza Hut fast food fare.


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