Brian McKenna @ The Courtyard
Renowned for his fun foodie flair and concept dining style, award-winning British chef Brian McKenna has cut the ribbon on his creative new eatery, Brian McKenna @ The Courtyard. With a sophisticated vibe and hues of brass and blue, it’s located within one of Beijing’s most famous attractions, the Forbidden City, providing 40 patrons per night with fantastic views of the historic landmark. And the cocktail-lovers too, while enjoying a pre or post-prandial Sheep concoction (a heady mix of vodka, pear puree, elderflower and dry ice), can survey the vistas from the terrace or cigar lounge below.
The seasonally-inspired, multiple Med-Asian menus turn even the simplest of dishes into a taste-bud temptation - take the rather literal garden salad appetizer, a bed of leaves under 40 hot and cold additions (like edible flowers and 60-degree poached egg), served with mini gardening tools with dressing poured out of a watering can. As for mains, there’s Asian spiced rice with avocado ice cream and tempura king crab or slow-cooked delights like beef with marrow, mushrooms and onions or salmon with pan-fried foie gras and spiced lentils, topped with fig and apple chutney. And when dessert finales include berry cheesecake with house-made berry-flavoured balloons depicting China’s flag and a terracotta warrior made of chocolate, filled with mango sauce on a bed of mandarin sorbet and chocolate-mandarin ganache, resistance is somewhat futile.