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“Abysmal”

Huajia Yiyuan (Hua's Restaurant)
Ranked #28 of 12,697 Restaurants in Beijing
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $10 - $75
Cuisines: Chinese, Street Food
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Large groups, Special occasions, Local cuisine, Families with children
Dining options: Breakfast, Late Night, Dinner, Lunch, Reservations
Neighborhood: Beijing Workers' Sports Complex
London, United Kingdom
Level 1 Contributor
4 reviews
3 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
“Abysmal”
Reviewed September 16, 2012

We visited this restaurant after reading the reviews on Tripadvisor - as we usually do when we visit foreign climes. Had it not been for some useful comments on another restaurant (Mr and Mrs Bund, which i will also be reviewing), we would have dismissed Tripadvisor restaurant recommendations forevermore. This place was diabolical, so i don't understand why so many people have enthused about it.

I'll take it from the top. When we arrived we were ushered into a stuffy, smoke-filled room next to a table of French chain smokers. The walls were dirty, the smell of smoke loomed heavy and the atmosphere was a toxic soup not too dissimilar to the smog that hovers over this great city. And no, there wasn't any spare tables in the open courtyard where others were lucky enough to dine in the relative comfort of clean (ish) air.

The menu was extensive and difficult to decipher. The friendly waiter was there to talk us through it, for which we were very grateful. He was excellent. The food however, was anything but (with one exception). Because the menu was ambiguous in its descriptions, we decided to 'play it safe'. We ordered noodles, beef in some incarnation of a savoury sauce, duck rolls and crayfish.

The noodles were hideous and tasted like a hybrid of artificial chicken stock and tomato ketchup. They were oily and cold. And they had a number of mysterious ingredients in them. The meat was gelatinous and the sauce gloopy and sickly. The duck rolls comprised shredded duck meat rolled in an overcooked omelette. The meat itself was tasteless and some of the textures within suggested the meat was not of good quality, rather the scrapings not used in other dishes - sinewy, fatty, gristly. One bite was enough to turn our stomachs.

The phoenix to rise from this raging inferno was however, the crayfish, which was super spicy. The crays were swimming in a mouth-numbing pepper oil, which was delicious. Whatever you do, make sure you don't bite into on of the peppercorns. It would be a potential night ender.

When we finally left, which wasn't soon enough, we took the opportunity to look in the mini oceanarium, which supplies the multiplicity fish dishes. It was rather worrying to see more than one tank with fish that had seen better days - they were all floating belly up. Not good, given the rapid decomposition rate of seafood.

There isn't much else that i can add to this review, nor is there any logic to be found in the other reviews i have read (this is not meant to offend). Maybe we hit this restaurant on a bad day? I will never return to find out if this much is true.

  • Visited September 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
3 Thank Tony_two_sheets
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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334 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    181
    114
    21
    11
    7
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Greek first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
Bern, Switzerland
Level 4 Contributor
26 reviews
14 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
“excellent”
Reviewed September 7, 2012

good value for price, staff and atmosphere in the internal court. great food and entertainment from 19h30 to 20h30. Best place I eat in in Beijing.

  • Visited August 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank steo_to
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Beijing, China
Level 4 Contributor
29 reviews
13 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
“My favorite in Beijing”
Reviewed August 3, 2012

This restaurant has some of finest Chinese food in Beijing plus it has a nightly floorshow that can't be beat. The face changer dancer is just mystifying and the duck is served with the prerequisite pancakes but comes with a sweet and hot sauce as well as the duck sauce, honey melon and pineapple sticks and sticks of haw jelly that really gives the duck an amazing flavor when eaten together in a pancake packet.

Visited June 2012
Helpful?
2 Thank KarenGrMtnGirl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Singapore, Singapore
Level 3 Contributor
15 reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
“Nice food and performance”
Reviewed August 2, 2012

This is a restaurant in a courtyard. It was a nice experience dining in this restaurant. Food is ok, and the performance was an added plus.

Performance -
1) A young girl was dancing hip hop with flour dough.
2) A chef was showing his skills in pulling the flour into tiny strands of noodles
3) Changing faces - The highlight of the night was the encore changing into Spiderman's mask. That rocked the restaurant.

  • Visited July 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank GX7714
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 4 Contributor
35 reviews
23 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
“Good Food, Feels Authentic, Certainly Loud”
Reviewed July 23, 2012

Dinners in Beijing are more or less between 630 and 930 with some restaurants taking last orders as early as 9pm. In 'ghost street' restaurants remain open longer.

This restaurant is situated in Ghost street. The street can't be missed as there are hundreds of red lanterns set up all along the street (in themselves a sight that creates a lovely atmosphere).

The tables and chairs are dated. The place tacky.

The command of English across the board is abyssmal. Although all members of staff were very courteous.

The entertainment is hilarious. What was most entertaining I guess were the patrons jumping to their feet, clapping, shouting, singing (screeching) and dancing. The Caberet seemed to make them very happy which in itself is positive and you can't but enjoy it. If you're not into loud noise, then you best avoid this place as it surely did get loud.

What's most important is the food, which is good. They have a room with a variety of fish in different aquaria. We did not have fish so didn't find out how this worked. I guess it could be a bit difficult to find out if you don't speak mandarin.

Most patrons looked local which is always a good sign.

  • Visited July 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
2 Thank CVCRS
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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