29 (Sun) May 2016
Some Kind of Baby Zucchinis
at Dali Courtyard
with staff and temporary advisors
Mission to China, Day 1.
In Beijing. Arrived this morning. Here to attend a tobacco meeting, tomorrow. Flying back to Manila, Tuesday.
Upon arrival, going directly from the airport to the venue (Beijing Middle School #8), where we supported a youth-oriented event to celebrate World No Tobacco Day (May 31), I got there a bit early and had a quick lunch at a restaurant (Golden Lake) across the street.
For dinner, the Country Office hosted an informal gathering for the speakers of tomorrow’s event.
The venue was Dali Courtyard.
The cuisine from the southern province of Yunnan is one of China’s most eclectic, with culinary influences from bordering countries/cultures, including Myanmar, Lao PDR, and Viet Nam [as an international civil servant, I find it difficult to write “Burma, Laos, and Vietnam”]. In essence, loosely described as an “anything goes”/”whatever works”/”it’s all good” philosophy.
The food was excellent. No menu, every day something different. Prix fixe, just 100 CNY (about $15) per pax. In addition to the quality of the dishes themselves, impeccably prepared and presented, far removed from traditional/typical Mandarin cuisine, the surprise with each course was a treat — like visiting America and going out for exotic Cajun.
With trepidation, I return to China — first visit in over 2.5 years (see most recently 4.294 Yabozi), second visit to Beijing (2008, before GMTD) — where I’ve had my share of communication problems, particularly in restaurants (see generally 4.291 A Palatial Feast…). So far so good this trip : the venues for lunch and midnight snack both offering menus with photos, and the dinner venue needing no menu at all.