How to Enjoy an Authentic Meal at a Chinese Restaurant


If you want to enjoy an evening out at a Chinese restaurant then you will want the best Chinese restaurant you can find. Your expectations should go far beyond general cleanliness and good service for the evening. You will want to find a Chinese restaurant that serves authentic food that you would actually find in China. Here are four things to consider before making your restaurant choice.

Where is the restaurant located?

Is the Chinese restaurant located in a local Chinese community? A Chinese restaurant should serve authentic Chinese food and be somewhere that Chinese people are happy to eat rather than being a generic Asian restaurant that serves bland noodle dishes. A restaurant that is part of a vibrant Chinese community is a great place to start your search.

How is the restaurant marketed?

Does the Chinese restaurant promise 'Chinese food' or are they more specific? China is a large country with eight specific culinary regions. A good Chinese restaurant will probably choose to advertise food from a particular region. Look for a Cantonese, Sichuan, or Hunan restaurant to really find a restaurant that is serious about providing you with an authentic Chinese culinary experience.

How Chinese is the restaurant?

The sign outside may proclaim that you are entering a 'Chinese restaurant' but what does it feel like when you are seated inside? What language does the staff speak among themselves? Obviously, the ability to communicate with English speaking customers is important but finding a restaurant where the staff have a close connection to their culture offers the promise of a more authentic Chinese experience.

Then look at the menus provided. Is there a Chinese menu offered alongside the English one? A good Chinese restaurant will cater not primarily for English speaking residents but for members of their own Chinese community who understand the language. A Chinese language menu will probably contain authentic Chinese dishes which are missing from the English menu. You may need to enlist the help of a Chinese friend to read the menu but if you are seeking traditional Chinese food it will be worth the effort.

Are all the dishes really Chinese in origin?

If you are seeking Chinese food then don't allow yourself to be satisfied by a menu offering any pseudo-Chinese dishes such as 'Duck sauce', 'Crab rangoon' or 'Egg foo yung' which may appear to be Chinese but which owe their origin to Western-Chinese chefs, not to the Chinese people. A Chinese restaurant which offers these 'fake' Chinese dishes is either catering primarily for a Western audience or has no real understanding of what authentic Chinese food should be.

By taking the time to search out a Chinese restaurant offering authentic Chinese food you can sure of enjoying a genuinely Chinese experience on your evening out.


8 January 2019

Choosing a fine dining restaurant

When I decided to ask my girlfriend to marry me, I of course wanted the night to be really special. I knew she wanted to have a full movie proposal where we go to a fine dining restaurant, eat great meals and then have me get down on one knee and ask her to marry me. I checked which restaurants offered that kind of service and I even gathered some pictures from her favourite movie so I can get a place that perfectly matches what she was after. I ended up making this the perfect night. This blog is all about finding fine dining restaurants for the special dinners in your life.