5 mins

5 cool Beijing restaurants

SAS flight crew list the funky, authentic eateries they always seek out when they're in the Chinese capital

Mao's Limo

1. Awen Tang Bao

This apparently plain restaurant in the Chaoyang District serves anything but plain food. The subdued lighting is perfectly inviting after a day of shopping, and the baozi (steamed buns filled with seafood soup) are a wonderful end to the day.

Baozi are typical of the classic Shanghai-style dim sum, and the ones here are perhaps the best in Beijing. If you want to appear in the know, ask the waiter for a straw with which you can easily extract the soup. You will definitely impress the staff.

This place is cheap, but not simple: better even than a grand banquet.

Where: 9 Guanghua Xili, Chaoyang District

Recommended by: Dandi S, Beijing based crew member, SAS

2. Red Capital Club

This club represents a true oasis of chic amid the disappearing old hutongs of Beijing. It may be a little tricky to find but it's well worth the effort.

The interior is decorated with remnants from the Mao regime.The food is excellent and the atmosphere outstanding. Whenever I take other crew there they always say: “How on earth did you find this place?”

Where: No. 66 Dongsi Jiutiao, Dongcheng District

More infiormation: www.redcapitalclub.com.cn

Recommended by: Serge B, Service Director, Air Canada

3. Little Sheep

Whenever I want to indulge in some good food, I always think of Little Sheep.

Many westerners are not used to hot-pot style. It's actually simple and interesting to try and is an important part of Chinese food culture. Just put the raw ingredients including lamb, beef, vegetables, mushrooms, seafood and noodles into the herb-seasoned hot soup and wait for a few seconds until they are ready. Non-spicy or spicy – it's up to you.

And if you're alone, just order a small pot for yourself.

Where: 34 Xibahe Zhongli, Chaoyang District

More information: www.littlesheep.com

Recommended by: Dandi S, Beijing-based crew member, SAS

Dandi SWhere would you take a friend for dinner?

“If they are lovers of spicy food, I would take them to South Beauty, a showpiece for Sichuan cuisine. But if it was pure extravagance we were looking for, then Little Sheep Hot Pot.” – Dandi S

4. 1949 Noodle Bar

Noodle slurping doesn't get any better than at this small courtyard restaurant located behind Pacific Century Place in the Chaoyang District.

Watch the chef stretch out the noodles in front of your eyes in the hip 12-seater bar, or sit outdoors. The beautiful setting is a converted courtyard of a former electrical factory now containing a chic circuit of bars, restaurants and art galleries.

Where: 1949 The Hidden City, Courtyard 4, Gongti Bei Lu, Chaoyang District

More information: www.elite-concepts.com

Recommended by: Gorm E, pilot, SAS

5. Old Beijing Restaurant

A very popular restaurant that feels like the local's first choice. The service is very friendly (once you have battled the language problems) and the food is fantastic. I can especially recommend the excellent beef fillet with mushrooms; it's delicious.

Or why not try the Chinese noodles, which are their specialty.

Where: 29 Chong Wai Street, Chong Wen District, Pearl Market

Recommended by: Pia J, air steward, SAS

SAS Crew GuideScandinavian Airlines (SAS) operates more flights to and from the UK than any other airline. The SAS Crew Guide is updated every year and is full of top travel tips from cabin crew and pilots. You can download it as a free app for your smart phone here.


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