Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Beijing (Tue)

Met up with Mauricio and some of his Intel buddies for breakfast. Yio/ Tiao/, assorted buns, and soy milk.

Lunch at the shopping mall food court. Got some hand pulled noodles and some boiled dumplings. You can see the noodle pulling guy in the middle of the photo behind the yellow sign (didn't get an action shot).

Dumplings (so good when they're fresh!).

Noodles (too much cilantro, boo!).

Interesting way to advertise to you... displays built into shopping carts.

Dinner that night was at the Chinese "Hall of the People". This is similar to their equivalent of congress or the senate where their politburo meets. Regular folks don't usually get to set foot in there. We were to be treated to something like a "state dinner".

The official invitation. No entrance without one.

Hall of the People from the outside.

The banquet room where we had dinner.

Nice painting of horses.

Mao leading the Chinese people.

Of course all of the ethnic minorities are at the very back of the line.

Random cold dishes/appetizers.

The menu (for those of you who can read Chinese).

We had a nice performance with various classical western and Chinese instruments.

There was much jockeying for good photos.

Shrimp in a tomato-y sauce; in background are some weird tater-tot like things, except bigger and with some stuff in the middle (I think it was some ground meat, maybe some diced mushrooms, and sauce).

I think this translates into Golden Thread or maybe Golden Needle soup.

This was bizarre. Half-way through the meal, they brought out little pieces of cake!

Some kind of bun.

Duck, but not peking duck. The sauce is different and the duck skin is not so crispy. But otherwise the serving method is similar.

Kalbi-type ribs with sugar-snap peas.

Some kind of pork on the left, and fried rice.

Asparagus and carrots.

Deep-fried salmon.

Overall, I wasn't that impressed with the food, but I think the menu was designed to entertain visiting foreign dignitaries as opposed to a random Chinese person who grew up in the states.

After that, we wandered our way over to Wangfujing street.

Tiananmen square at night.

Mao was still attracting plenty of attention from tourists at this hour.

Mmm... scorpions. They were still wriggling around on the skewers, so you know they're fresh! We had a lot of people chowing down on these critters (after frying).

Other meats/parts/species on sticks.

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