Who doesn't love grand entrances like this?
No, we were not playing tourists and visiting a temple.
We were just really hungry people looking for dinner.
Temple Restaurant Beijing is housed within the walls of a 600-year old Buddhist Temple
complex in a quiet part of the city. Despite renovations, original structures were kept to preserve
the rich history of the place. The delicate balance between the old and new left me breathless.
The actual temple is located at the back and is used to host private functions and events.
Come early so you can do a little tour of the compound right before dinner.
The main dining room is set in what used to be a television factory that produced the
first black and white TV's in the capital. How cool is that???
Inside is spacious but cozy, bright but can still be quite romantic :)
We were greeted with these delicious little snacks
And addicting cheese puffs. I couldn't stop popping the babies into my mouth!
The breads were nice, too. I found myself dipping them into my soup later on. Shame!
The delectable amuse bouche promised us very good things to come.
Frances and I each ordered the 8-Course Degustation. There were no set dishes
and we were asked to choose 8 different items from the a la carte menu to create
our own customized dinner tasting. What a joy!!!
We decided to get a mix of different dishes and share everything so we could taste a total of 16 plates. It was a fantastic plan and I recommend you do the same.
My absolute favorites were the cauliflower veloute, foie gras & lobster, foie gras custard, suckling pig, house-cured gravlax, and braised short ribs.
King Crab Salad, Avocado Mousse, Mango Cashew
Veloute of Cauliflower, Hokkaido Scallop, Smoked Avruga Caviar
Foie Gras Terrine, Peach Chutney, Hawaiian Rock Salt, Toasted Brioche
Duo of Sardines, Raisins, Pine Nuts, Olive Tapenade
Foie Gras Terrine, Lobster, Sea Lettuce, Lobster Salad, Truffle Mayonnaise
Foie Gras, Foie Gras Custard, Shiitake Mushrooms, Dashi
Suckling Pig, Courgette, Aubergine, Pine Nuts, Raisins
Temple's specialty, the house-cured gravlax, was carved tableside.
Gravlax, Eggs, Capers, Shallots, Horseradish Cream
All-Day Braised Short Rib, Polenta, Baby Carrots
Olive Oil Poached Black Cod, Bagna Cauda Sauce, Black Truffle Crust, Shallot Confit
Herb Crusted Lamb Loin, Couscous, Merguez, Okra, Cumin Mint Yogurt
Rice Flake Crusted Lobster, Bok Choy, Coconut Curry, Chili Garlic Oil
Beef Tenderloin, Mashed Potatoes, Olives, Baby Spinach, Green Peppercorn Sauce
Seared Pigeon, Foie Gras Pistachio Croutons, Polenta, Cherries
To go with our dinner, the sommelier recommended
Domaine de Pallus "Les Pensées de Pallus" Chinon 2010
And Gaja Ca'Marcanda Promis 2010
Oh, I forgot to mention that Florence and Felisse were also dining with us. They ordered the
4-Course Summer Tasting Menu which I did not anymore take pictures of. Because their food
was only half the amount of ours, their plates came out at a slower pace so we would all finish
at the same time. Waiting for their food while watching Frances and I take our sweet time eating
and taking photos made them very sleepy and irritable. They were also getting full very fast.
When they asked the server to kindly hurry up with their food (because they were full and
wanted to go home already), the waiter assumed that they were hungry and brought over
complimentary courses for them! Lol! The restaurant manager also came by to bring them
more dishes and he was extremely kind and graceful about it that the two girls had no
choice but to finish all the extra courses despite being stuffed to the eyeballs! Hahaha!
Service was so exemplary that even the two little grouches had to smile.
Basil granita with Canevel Valdobbiadene Extra Dry
Dessert wasn't Temple Restaurant's forte. Out of the four I ate, I only liked one. But I did like it very much.
Earl Grey Tea Parfait, Manuka Honey
Espresso Tiramisu, Vanilla Ice Cream
Creme Fraiche Cheesecake, Strawberries, Caramelized Pecans, Lemongrass Ice Cream
THIS ONE, OF COURSE!!!
Feuilletine Praline Crunch, Dark Chocolate, Salted Caramel Ice Cream
And then there was more!
Little bites of sweetness to end our meal
And a complimentary glass each of Teatinos Moscatel
We were also given parting gifts of homemade fruit preserves
It was our longest dinner at 4.5 hours but hands down the best ever meal we had in Beijing.
I highly recommend!
Temple Restaurant Beijing: No.23 SongZhuSi, Shatan Beijie, Dongcheng District, Beijing
Tel: +86 10 8400 2232