• Restaurants
  • Western
  • Steakhouses
19 Sanlitun Lu
It’s a bold statement to make, but this might just be the best value-for-money establishment in Beijing in which to get your meat fix.

A starter of Ligurian-style skillet roasted mussels (58RMB) done in the classic Italian way deserves a mention for opening up the palate with its tangy sauce. The tableside Caesar salad (48RMB) was an expensive disappointment, not only because it wasn’t served tableside during lunch, but because it was just another watery mayonnaise dressing lacking a rich, yolky anchovy strength.

The Flamme house steak – a tender Australian top blade cut (often a butcher’s secret favourite) is just 98RMB (150g), or 138RMB (260g) for a larger cut. For some strange reason, it’s two for the price of one on Tuesdays and hard to beat. Steaks are both imported and domestic, and the menu boasts they are cooked sous-vide, a method of slow moist cooking over controlled heat in special plastic insulated bags then finished on a grill for optimum results. Try to order a steak well done and you’re likely to get a strong warning of advice against doing so from the trained staff. A choice of sauces is available including habanero hollandaise, Korean BBQ, and classic demi-glace. Also notable is the pork tenderloin in milk brine (68RMB), a process that the menu states takes two days to brine. The milk cooking technique is supposed to ensure tenderness and this pork was soft and tender, but not juicy.

The selection of sides are all 18RMB and seem to run out often. The cloud potatoes with crème fraiche is fluffy and buttery, but too tangy. The Hainan-style forbidden black rice with pieces of fruit, ginger and leek was one of the only other choices available and should be forbidden. It’s colourful and beckons to be eaten, but won’t win many fans with its violent clash of flavours. Alas, the finish is a bit of a letdown. The chocolate cherry brioche bread pudding (32RMB) was dry and overly sweet and the chocolate seemed lost but never found.

Flamme’s menu also offers a good assortment of bar snacks such as the zucchini chips (28RMB), a collection of brilliant, slightly greasy and salty discs, the way good chips should be. They are the perfect partner to a
draft of Duval at a bargain 25RMB during half-price happy hour (from 6pm, Thur-Sun). Cocktails are also gently priced, which makes Flamme a good spot for drinks and light bites or dinner. Kenneth Tan

Offering one of Beijing's best hot sandwiches

One of Beijing's best burger restaurants!

Venue name: Flamme
Opening hours: 11am-10.30pm Sun-Thur; 11am-11pm Fri-Sat
Metro: Metro: Tuanjiehu
English address: S4-33, Third Floor, Village South, 19 Sanlitun Lu, Chaoyang district
Chinese address: 朝阳区三里屯路19号三里屯VILLAGE南区3层S4-33室
  • 4 out of 5 stars