49 Gongmenkou 1st Alley, Xicheng Qu, Beijing Shi, China
Photo by Dave's Studio Beijing
Southern FishThis ultra-popular Hunanese joint looks more like a Scandi home-goods showroom than a restaurant serving fiery home-style Hunan food. The menu items are a delightful contrast to the chic and very minimalist decor. Soft fermented tofu with tomato paste and chili is a solid medium-spice dish, and cauliflower fried with scallions and garlic is even more mild, a wonderfully textural accompaniment to pork belly stir-fried with green and red chilies. On most tables you'll see hot and sour fish head soup, the spicy broth thickened up with mung bean noodles. Whatever dishes you order, tack on rice for everyone—you'll need it to cut the heat.