Beijing Restaurant is an oasis of quality and authenticity, reports ksherak. The new restaurant’s young and friendly owners, Sandy and Jin, are a couple of Beijing natives who have also spent time in New Zealand.
A lot of places say they specialize in Beijing cuisine, but this one really means it, with dishes you’ll rarely find in the Bay Area, ksherak says. The menu is full of dumplings, pancakes, turnover-like “pies,” hand-pulled noodles, pan-fried and steamed baozi (buns), and lots of Beijing-style meat dishes. Jin’s mom, who ran a restaurant in Beijing for 20 years, works on the special “small foods” menu as well as the handmade noodles. Top choices include cumin lamb, house special pie with pork and ginger, the tender house special steamed meatball, Beijing beef pie, and dumplings with fennel.
Nancy Berry touts the garlicky cold dish of boiled beef as “the best tendon that I’ve ever had,” with wonderful flavor and texture. Beijing beef pancake (kind of like a taco) and house special spicy eggplant, while not so spicy, are also delicious.
And for lovers of zha jiang mian, or noodles with meat sauce, the noodles are pulled to order, dense and chewy, with freshly cut vegetables, says sfbing. Everything is plated separately, so you mix to your preference. Beware, the nicely smoky sauce is also pretty salty, so start with half.
Beijing Restaurant [Excelsior]
1801 Alemany Boulevard, San Francisco