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“Last Orders” is a regular magazine column in which we ask noteworthy Beijingers to imagine their final meal before leaving the city for good.

After four years in Beijing, CCTV Culture Express editor, writer, and presenter Lee Maxwell Simpson is taking his vocal talents back to London. Before he departs, he plans what could be his last meal in the capital.

The venue
While it may not be a restaurant per se, Contempio is stunning – a 600-year-old temple in the middle of the hutongs. It couldn’t really be any more Beijing, albeit gentrified to the maximum. The room at the back of the bar, with the temple looming large next to you, is amazing and would be apt for my last supper extravaganza.

The starters
I’ve recently been gorging myself on all things Yunnan, so I would have to get the marvelous team from Hani Gejiu to work their magic. A selection of starters would include the potato balls with delectable dipping sauce along with mountains of their mint and tofu skin salad, which is quite frankly unbelievable. Their lemon chicken salad is also mouth-watering. All of this will be washed down with a Dali beer.

Main course
Not shy of the theatrical, I’m going to ask the Haidilao Hot Pot folk to come by and boil up a treat for us. They could also bring along Connect Four and their manicurists, which would provide some light relief between courses. Then we would all don bright red aprons and throw all manner of meats and knobby mushrooms into the broth as it spits searing oil all around us. The hand-pulled noodle show is truly excellent and will get everyone oohing and aahing.

Dessert
I’d go Western with Mercante’s panna cotta with raspberry. That will have my guests whimpering with their eyes rolling back in their heads. I’d follow that up with Capital M’s pavlova if we can handle it. If there’s any room left, we’ll take after-dinner cheese from Le Fromagerie de Pekin, accompanied by an Old Fashioned from Mao Mao Chong.

Music
I want Ludacris’ “Move B*tch” on loop while we eat to evoke some nostalgia for his legendary 2011 Black Rabbit Music Festival performance before a bemused Chinese crowd. I’m a big fan of getting everyone involved on the dance floor, so the Hutong Yellow Weasels would come along so we can have a good ol’ hoedown after dinner and do-si-do all night long.


Visit the original source and full text: the Beijinger Blog