Beijing Day 3: Lunch at Er Mei Restaurant

It was almost 3 PM by the time we got out of the Bei Hai Park. We were really hungry at that time. There were a number of restaurants around the northern entrance of the Bei Hai Park and so we explored the area to look for a place for a late lunch lunch.

I remembered coming across a shop which sells roasted chestnut with a very long line. There must be like at least 50 people lining up and the waft of roasted chestnut was so fragrant. As far as I would like to try them, the line was just too long.


We settled at the above restaurant called Er Mei Restaurant. Despite it was almost 3 PM, the restaurant was full. So we guess this would be a great place to settle for lunch.

We had to wait for 10 minutes for a table. We took it as a good sign.


We had freshly made soy milk to quench our thirst as recommended by the boss-looking lady. The soy milk is served hot. It is not sweetened. They gave us sugar on the side for us to sweeten to our own preference. It was really nice.


When we asked for a recommendation from the lady-boss, she recommended the “Gung Bao Ji Ting” which she said is the signature dish of the restaurant. We were¬†skeptical at first …¬†because this is such a common dish. We looked around and we did see a lot of table ordering this. So we said yes to it.

It was truly, truly amazing. The sauce is so additive and so good with steamed rice that we just cant stop eating it. The peanuts were really crunchy and Ben kept telling me not to pick all the peanuts.


The fish dish above were one of the dishes that was posted on the wall. It was another signature dish of the restaurant. Again, it was a great choice.

The server did brought the life fish out for us the inspect before it’s brought back to the kitchen. Fish dish usually price according to weight especially when the restaurant brings out a life one. So, we knew it wont be cheap.


The fish was meaty and the spicy and the garlicky sauce was so appetizing. We were stuff and satisfied. The meal was not exactly cheap for Beijing standards. Even though it was RMB274 (CAD$46), this ranked as one of the better meals we had.

This Post Has 5 Comments

  1. Christine

    I loved having the choice of hot soy milk in China and Taiwan! It’s a great change. Did the fish have a muddy taste? I remember when I was in Beijing (two years ago), the fish I had was fishy and a tad muddy.

    1. Ben

      Hi Christine: Not with this fish we had. I think it all depends on the type of fish you had. This one came at a premium and that it why it cost so much. Ben

  2. James

    The fish looks fantastic, it is very pricey even in Beijing. I had similar fish dish in Sanjiang Quangxi for less than 50 yuan, but Sanjiang is far and way out of big city.

  3. liz

    Your fish looks like the ones we had in Guangzhou. Our relatives called it “Fook Siu” fish that comes from Africa. It’s sweet and succulent, very meaty, and bones are not a problem. As James says, “very pricey”. It’s 100% better than what we were recently served in Shanghai. There were so many little bones, you’d have to be an experienced fish lover to seriously dip your sticks into it.

  4. DonaldD

    The price for live fish plate is expensive no matter it is Beijing or Shanghai standard but what the heck as long you really enjoy it. Mind you when travel aboard, sometimes you have pay a lot than the locals and fresh seafood in Beijing is not your everyday dish that most people can afford to have. Beijing is a landlock city, so all LIVE seafood has to ship from coastal city and not every fish will survive the journey and still stay alive when you order. Then you will understand the reason behind the high price. Mind you the fresh meat is always tastier than frozen seafood and most people can tell the difference.

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