Did you think that you would move to Beijing to eat barbecue weekly? Neither did we, but somehow that’s what happened. Home Plate and its original location hardly needed to convince Beijing further. We were happy to travel outside of the Third Ring Road on the regular for pulled pork and fried pickles.

But good folks that they are, the team behind Home Plate is indulging us with a new Sanlitun space. If the main critique of the first spot was the limited seating, this second sprawling location more than compensates for that small shortfall. And if one were to be petty, you might have quibbled that the cornbread at Sanyuanqiao tended towards dry or, for those of us with a healthy appetite for sugar, the dessert selection was constrained. In Sanlitun, these problems have been solved.

An order of cornbread is not dry in the slightest and comes with a new, thrilling development: bacon muffins (RMB 15, two of each, soft opening prices subject to change). Other novel items bolster the stacked line-up, too. Cheese-stuffed peppers wrapped in house-cured bacon (RMB 38, five pieces) might not have occurred to you, and you will be sad that the concept wasn’t yours – they are brilliant. Soups have arrived in time for the cold season. Sip slowly, if you can exercise restraint, on a rich Brunswick stew (RMB 20) – tomato broth heavy with a constellation of corn kernels and shredded meat – lest you fill yourself before the requisite flurry of sandwiches: pulled pork and brisket (RMB 35), variations on chicken (fried, barbecued and buffalo, all RMB 30) and the newcomer chilli cheese dog (RMB 30).

Supplement the home-style fare with a rare Virgil’s rootbeer (RMB 45) or a swathe of cocktails inspired by items you might find in a corner candy store, like the pop in the Adult Cherry Coke (RMB 35) or the black licorice in the Le Fizz Criole (RMB 35). Eat the exceptional apple and candied walnut salad with honey Dijon vinaigrette (RMB 30) to counteract the imminent bread pudding with bourbon sauce (RMB 30) and slice of chocolate cake (RMB 30) ... because this is how one achieves a balanced – if overabundant – diet, right?

Home Plate Bar-B-Que
Daily 11am-10pm (bar until midnight). Courtyard 4 (100m past The Bookworm on the right), Gongti Beilu, Chaoyang District (400 967 670)
800m west of Tuanjiehu station (Line 10)

Also try: Tim’s Texas BBQ, Fuel

A version of this article appears in the February 2014 issue of the Beijinger

Photos: Joey

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