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Newer Page 720 of 968 Older Full Trip Report
China Beijing Sanlitun Beef

12 November 2011

Sanlitun

My brief research using restricted internet tells me Sanlitun is the base of the expat community, as well as the bar and club going Chinese, as well as all foreign diplomats. However it also said its been knocked down and is now a building site.
All of that turned out to be true, theres lots of brand new parts, some eerie ghost towns despite being open, some packed to the rafters and full of expensive fancy restaurants, as well as some older seedy parts.

I got off the subway and went the wrong way, and ended up going past various embassies and dimplomatic compounds, where frightened people live in mini cities with bowling alleys behind huge fences with soldiers patrolling outside.
Eventually I found a back way into one of the new abandoned malls. I was prepared for dissapointment. But then off in the distance I could see the apple store logo, one things for certain, wherever you see an apple store in China you will find a lot of people.
Luckily this lead me to the interesting part of town, not the apple store part specifically, but the streets around it.
There were a lot of high end night clubs and very large expensive restaurants, the crowd was a mix of every culture, including a lot of Africans from the nearby embassies.

This is where the story gets a bit crap. Unfortunately as a single male wandering around looking at stuff, you attract the attention of anyone looking to scam you or sell you something. This is all good fun when its 18 year old Chinese girls trying take you to a tea house or prostitute themselves, however when its Nigerian men in leather jackets trying to sell you cocaine and assuring me 'its cool bro, the cops are our lookout' things get a bit dicey.
Also, the girls here are Thai or Phillipino (I think) and have much more confidence in just openly grabbing you and saying 'wanna party?'.
You would think that like me, everyone would know either of these offers is a bad idea, but I saw some frat boys with their collars popped heading off with the Nigerians.

One good thing about the brand new shopping mall areas being abandoned is, you can get into the restaurants, no queue, and happy to take a party of 1.

China-Beijing-Sanlitun-Beef - Its new, its open, its shiny, its deserted.

Its new, its open, its shiny, its deserted.


China-Beijing-Sanlitun-Beef - Its old, its dirty, its seedy, its packed.

Its old, its dirty, its seedy, its packed.


China-Beijing-Sanlitun-Beef - I am pretty sure this is false advertising.

I am pretty sure this is false advertising.


China-Beijing-Sanlitun-Beef - Apple stores bring people into the region like nothing else, I wonder if they get free rent?

Apple stores bring people into the region like nothing else, I wonder if they get free rent?


China-Beijing-Sanlitun-Beef - A whole street full of crappy bars, and coke dealers.

A whole street full of crappy bars, and coke dealers.


China-Beijing-Sanlitun-Beef - The scene from above.

The scene from above.


China-Beijing-Sanlitun-Beef - Redundant photo of the Sanlitun area, low pollution tonight, you can see the moon.

Redundant photo of the Sanlitun area, low pollution tonight, you can see the moon.


China-Beijing-Sanlitun-Beef - Still under construction, like most of Beijing.

Still under construction, like most of Beijing.


China-Beijing-Sanlitun-Beef - My dinner, sichuan beef hotpot. The guy running this restaurant was extremely anxious, probably because he has opened up in an abandoned outdoor mall.

My dinner, sichuan beef hotpot. The guy running this restaurant was extremely anxious, probably because he has opened up in an abandoned outdoor mall.
He told me, sit we have English menu, please! So I did. Then he couldnt find it, so he told me to look at the Chinese menu which had pictures whilst he found the English menu.
I saw what I wanted, it had 5 out of 5 chilli symbols next to it. He now finds the English menu and brings it to me, it has 10 things on it compared to the Chinese menu which had about 100. Kung pow chicken, sweet and sour pork etc. I was fearful of another Korean style fried chicken with ice cream incident so I told the anxious guy to bring me the sichuan beef hotpot, and make it HOT!
He then tried to explain to me that its not like American Chinese food. I gave him my famous glare. He then pleaded with me to at least order a milk drink to put out fire, I ordered plain green tea. He then checked once more, 'if you dont like you still pay, ok?'.
It was delicious, the sichuan peppers numbing the back of my tongue, the chilli creating a sensational high rivalling that of the Nigerian cocaine from earlier. Even the beef was of a very high quality, which was surprising.


China-Beijing-Sanlitun-Beef - Bonus photo, I got lost again going back to the subway and wandered through some Chinese private club car parks and then came out in a restaurant stre

Bonus photo, I got lost again going back to the subway and wandered through some Chinese private club car parks and then came out in a restaurant street with the Mysql restaurant.


NewerPage 720 of 968OlderFull Trip Report