Jen Lin-Liu, the co-author of this Frommer's edition, is the owner of this cooking school and private kitchen. After reviewing restaurants for years and learning how to cook in China, Jen figured out just the right formula for a restaurant of her own.
Located in a residential courtyard just off of the popular alley Nan Luogu Xiang, the kitchen makes home-style Beijing and Sichuan cuisine, with an emphasis on fresh, quality ingredients (organic vegetables from a local farm are delivered weekly; the cooking oil is non-GM; the chefs use MSG only sparingly, with the permission of whoever's eating that night). The restaurant features a lofty eat-in kitchen where guests can watch all the cooking action, plus a separate lounge for a more relaxed experience. Signature dishes include pan-fried pork and pumpkin dumplings, fried shiitake mushrooms seasoned with bamboo shoots and coriander, and cashew kung pao chicken. Since Jen modeled the meals after dinner parties she held at home, wine -- paired and matched with the food -- is included with dinner. There's no menu, but diners can inform the kitchen ahead of time if they have any particular dietary preferences or restrictions.
The kitchen runs hands-on cooking classes on Thursday and Saturday, and communal open dinners on Friday evenings seat up to 24 guests; otherwise, you may book classes or dinners daily by private appointment. Be sure to reserve early as the kitchen sometimes books several weeks in advance.
Contact us now and get ready for your next visit in Black Sesame Kitchen!