Suzhou Cuisine, enjoying great popularity in China, is known for its fine selection of ingredients, slightly sweet flavor and pleasant color. Suzhou-style cuisine features seasonal raw materials and unique cooking methods that help to retain the freshness of the raw materials. The Suzhou people choose dishes in accordance with the seasons; therefore, only when you are in Suzhou, could you taste authentic Su-style cuisine. Now, let’s go to the famous food streets in Suzhou, where you can not only find the Su-style cuisine, but also the Guangdong, Sichuan Zhejiang cuisines and western style food.
Taijian Lane (Eunuch Lane)
In Guanqian Street, the most bustling street in Suzhou, there is Taijian Lane, with a length of more than 200 meters. Historical records reveal that two eunuchs of the Ming Dynasty once lived here, hence the name. Now the lane has become a famous food street in Suzhou with more than 10 renowned restaurants, such as Songhe Lou Restaurant, Deyue Restaurant, Wangsi Restaurant, Wufangzhai Restaurant and Zhuhongxing Restaurant. A local saying goes: “Suzhou is a paradise on earth, and Taijian Lane provides the best food”.
The eastern end of Taijian Lane is adjacent to Bifengfang, a new food street with a large number of restaurants, such as Zhuhongxing Restaurant, Luyang Wonton Shop, Haoren Folk Snacks, Chuanfulou Restaurant, Origus, Tongrun Hunan Restaurant, Hansong Garden, and Ichibanya, and so on.
Phoenix Street borders Ganjiang Road that runs from the east to the west of Suzhou in the north, and Shiquan Street which features hotels, teahouses and arts and crafts. Less than 1,000 meters long, Phoenix Street has several dozens of restaurants, which serve mainly Su-style cuisine, as well as Sichuan and Zhejiang cuisines. The restaurants are small in size, with several to more than 10 tables. All the restaurants pay particular attention to preparing home-style dishes and keep promoting meticulously prepared seasonal dishes with small containers, making customers feel at home while tasting delicious food.
At the western end of the street is the Phoenix Square for urban people. At night the brightly lit restaurants form a sharp contrast with the spacious and quiet square. It will be great to take a walk in the square, or just sit on a bench enjoying people-watching.
Zhenshanmei Food Garden
The “Xintiandi” of Shanghai has become an up-to-date fashionable center, integrating catering service, commerce, recreation and culture and featuring a good environment and a graceful atmosphere. Suzhou also has a “Xintiandi”, with a beautiful name of Zhenshanmei (Truth, Kindness and Beauty) Food Garden.
Reputed as the “Xintiandi” of Suzhou, the Zhenshanmei Food Garden stands in the east part of the Humble Administrator’s Garden, in the garden-like Yuanwaiyuan Tourist Commodities Market. At the Din Tai Fung Dumpling House, you can taste typical Taipei small steamed buns with meat stuffing. The Red Kitchen is a high-class Western restaurant, which serves perfect Italian food and features lively indoor decorations and the open layout of the kitchen. The Emerald Restaurant provides typical Guangdong Cuisine prepared by famous chefs from Guangdong. There are also Fumantang Teahouse, Jingfang Café, and European Bar. Hence Zhenshanmei Food Garden is a good place for you to taste different kinds of Chinese and Western food, snacks, tea, coffee and beverage.