This charming little courtyard restaurant off Gulou Dongdajie is one of the city’s most unique outdoor venues and perfect for warm weather months. The menu is strictly prix fixe. Starting from RMB 100 per person, guests are served an assortment of five to 12 Yunnan standards (depending on how much you pay) prepared by a chef native to the region. Among these are dishes like ru bing (grilled goat cheese), grilled chilli fish, spicy stir-fried mushrooms, spicy Yunnan-style dumplings, crossing-the-bridge noodles (guoqiao mixian), fried shrimp and stir-fried wild vegetables (ye cai). Cocktails and wine are available. Advance reservations are necessary, particularly for the candle-lit outdoor terrace. Voted “Outstanding Chinese Restaurant of the Year,” "Outstanding Outdoor Dining" and "Outstanding Yunnan" in the Beijinger’s 2011 Reader Restaurant Awards.
No event here now.
- Outdoor Dining
- tbj Reader Restaurant Award Winners
- Nanluoguxiang / Gulou Dongdajie-南锣鼓巷鼓楼东大街
User reviews of Dali Courtyard 大里院子
I've been to Dali Courtyard a number of times and enjoyed it overall. It's a nice place to take out of town visitors. The food is good although not great, but their set menu approach allows diners to choose wine and not have to worry about guests knowing what to order, or seeing how much dinner costs.
During a visit in late November, the routine was the same except for two significant differences. First, it appears the number of dishes and what they are has changed. Towards the end of the meal we did not receive mi xian, rice noodles. That had been part of every meal I had ever had there before, whether as a couple or a large group.
The other difference was that the staff was argumentative when members of our party did not arrive on time. They wanted to cook and serve all the dishes from the time on the reservation, and were not willing to delay or reduce dishes when it appeared two or three people would not make it. Instead of finding a reasonable way to resolve this, they sent a junior server, who of course talked about it in front of the entire party in Chinese conversational tone, i.e. full volume. If I wanted to hear waidiren yell, I can do that at just about any other restaurant in Beijing, it's not necessary to pay Dali Courtyard's prices for the privilege.
Dali Courtyard was formerly a semi-default, especially in warmer weather. Now I'd have to think twice about whether I'd ever go there again.
This courtyard is one of the "must-do" Beijing experiences -- unique, pleasurable, yet not too touristy. Tranquil is a good word for its atmosphere in the evening.
I love the fact that you don't order from a menu but rather are served a set meal made up of what they have fresh on hand that evening. Almost everything they turn out is delicious so its hard to go wrong, and for those unfamiliar with Yunnan cuisine, a visit provides an excellent introduction.
The dishes tend to be a little too spicy for my tastes, so those that don't like it hot are advised to make another selection. Also, conservative eaters may be turned off by the preponderance of items such as exotic fungi and Yunnan cheese.
Tried to book a party here and manager quoted me a price which tripled within 2 days. Owner then told me she could charge whatever she wanted because she's very popular with foreigners and hung up on me. Twice! Horrible, abusive people and overrated food. Go elsewhere.
First time visitors to this little Hutong style restaurant (take good note of the directions, and at night look for the tiny dusty red lantern to guide your final steps).
Once inside it's like any other good eatery, a reasonable size outside courtyard and some small indoor spaces off the courtyard. The staff we had spoke reasonable English as well, but there's little transacting to be done given the set menu style of this place. The wine list is fine, and the food comes as it comes on the day. We had an eight dish menu on our visit, and all were good. I think we devoured every last scrap. Overall a really good night, and we'll be back.