Zhang Mama’s

Lip-tingling Sichuan specials at bargain prices

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It doesn’t look much from the outside, but this tiny restaurant serves up some of the best-value Sichuan dishes you’ll find anywhere in the capital.

The speciality is ma la xiang guo, a fiery, chilli-laced broth with either chicken, prawns or ribs simmering away inside, and with a variety of vegetables (potatoes, mushrooms etc.) added into the mix. One pot is enough for two or three people. You can add extra ingredients if it’s not enough.

Another favourite is the dan dan mian, a spicy dry noodle dish, which is another speciality of Sichuan province, and which makes a perfect lunchtime snack.

The rice dishes (gai fan) are also excellent value, making this place a smart choice if you’re on your own and can’t handle a whole ma la xiang guo to yourself. My personal favourite is the gong bao ji ding gai fan, the spicy-chicken-with-peanuts rice dish. Lip-tinglingly good, thanks to the generous sprinkling of Sichuan peppercorns.

Note, this place is unfeasibly popular with locals so almost never has any spare tables inside. They do, however, have some spillover tables in a side alley round the corner (to your left as you face the restaurant), so if you don’t mind eating on the neighbours’ doorsteps let them know that you’re happy to sit outside.

4 Fensiting Hutong (off Andingmennei Dajie)

Nearest Subway:
Andingmen (500m)

Categories: Eat: Local, Regional |

At A Glance

4 Fensiting Hutong (off Andingmennei Dajie)
ma la xiang guo ¥48-58 per pot; rice dishes ¥10-12; noodles ¥7-9;

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