Surprise! Some Upbeat Food News: Xibei Restaurant

I think we’ve all had enough of depressing food safety articles, haven’t we? So, I’ve decided to provide a ray of hope and tell you about a Chinese restaurant chain that is extremely healthy, inexpensive, fun, family friendly, and clean (“A” rating). It should be #1 on the expat mag lists of Top Chinese Restaurants, and yet inexplicably there has yet to be one major review by the expat mags. What is this gem, which is given 2 out of 3 stars in Frommers, is packed by locals but still off the laowai radar?

It’s called Xibei Youmian Cun (or just Xibei), a chain started by Canadian Chinese, and it offers northwestern China food (a Mongolian and Shanxi mixture). Think of it as hearty peasant food — lots of vegetables and lamb dishes. But the key here is that almost no oil is used in the dishes; their vegetable selection is by far the best and cleanest I’ve seen in China; and their emphasis on whole wheat and baked products is inspiring. They are so confident in their methods that their kitchen is open for all to watch. It’s actually quite enjoyable to watch the women make plate after plate of rolled oats. I like a lot of dishes, including their fresh yogurt drink, their lamb skewers, rolled oats, and their mushroom sizzling platter. But almost every dish is very tasty — and healthy. It’s such a great feeling to leave a Chinese restaurant and actually feel healthier and energized! Xibei is, by far, the best example I’ve seen of what the future of Chinese restaurants should be.

You can read more, in Chinese, at their own website (西贝莜面村-首页). As for locations, their big one is still at southwest third ring at liuliqiao, but there is now a new one just off the southeast corner of third ring and airport road (behind Silver Tower;  tel. 63453535 or 63453636).

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4 thoughts on “Surprise! Some Upbeat Food News: Xibei Restaurant”

  1. Thanks for profiling this place, Richard! One of the highlights of our trips home to Hohhot is always taking the whole family out for youmian — it is one of the tastiest and healthiest types of food in China. In addition to the branches you mention above, there is a large branch in the Grand China building near Sanyuanqiao that might be closer to many of your readers (including those of us in the Lido area). Free parking, too, for those with cars:

    分店地址: 北京市朝阳区东三环北路乙2号大新华航空B1层
    订餐电话:63453636,63453535 邮编:100027

  2. Dr. Richard Saint Cyr
    Thank you for finding this restaurant. We were in Beijing to adopt our daughter and were hard pressed to find good healthy foods. We normally eat a low fat, mostly vegetable diet when home in America. The Chinese view of American food seems to be as distorted as our view of Chineese food. Xibei was a refreshing change. The food was fantastic. Our only regrets are that we only went there once and we should have ordered more food.
    Thank you

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