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You can enjoy Chinese cuisines from all over China in Shenzhen. The native Cantonese style restaurants predominate, but foreigners tend to enjoy spicier Sichuan-style restaurants, hot pots, Langzhou-style noodles, and barbecues.
To make transport easy, some of these are in Luohu near the Luohu border crossing. Others are in Futian or Bao'an where foreign travellers go. Here is our recommended selection of Shenzhen's best Chinese restaurants of various styles.
Chinese restaurants in Shenzhen are notably less expensive than those in Hong Kong. For quick light meals, you can find a wide range of noodle dishes ranging from native Cantonese-style to Muslim Lanzhou style. A several course Chinese meal probably costs much less than in your home country.
The traditional local style of food, Cantonese cuisine, is popular all over the world. Less spice is used, and most meals are rice based. Lots of soup is served as major parts of meals and as beverages.
Cheap daily staple: A bowl of Cantonese style noodles is a daily meal for many Shenzhen people. You can stop in on regular restaurants on the street and eat a good tasting bowl of noodles with some vegetables and meat or egg for 8 to 13 RMB (1.20 to 2 USD). These can serve as light meals. In contrast, watery Cantonese noodles in about the least expensive restaurants most tourists will find in Hong Kong cost about 30 HKD (4 USD).
Chicken claws with abalone sauce (鲍汁凤爪) and green duck are signature dishes there. Roasted food and sea food are another two highlights. Ranked 249 of 3,913 Shenzhen restaurants on TripAdvisor.
Of all Cantonese foods, dim sum is the favorite of foreigners. Dim sum and good air-conditioning makes Jinyue popular with foreigners. Dim sum is served 8 am to 2 pm, and elegant dinners including seafood dishes are served in the evenings. Ranks 669 of 3,912 Shenzhen Restaurants on TripAdvisor.
Recommended dishes are crispy durian cake (榴莲酥), young pigeon (乳鸽), Huangsha clam (黄沙蚬), chicken claw (凤爪), beef short ribs (牛仔骨) and shrimp dumplings (虾饺).
This restaurant features congee (rice soup or creamy rice), and for this reason, it ranks lower among foreigners looking for something exciting like Beijing duck. But it ranks high with Chinese, and if you want some Cantonese bland rice based dishes, this is where to go.
Wupi duck porridge is a speciality. Many other kinds of porridges are served such as lobster porridge and gamey porridges such as partridge and hare porridge. Every kind of porridge is cooked up elaborately.
People like it because it is spicy, for the fun-dining hot pots, and for the fried meat dishes. Sichuan-style restaurants are probably China's most popular overall. They help make for a fun night out together.
It might be the flagship of Chuan cuisine in Shenzhen. Foreigners like it, and it is ranked #257 out of 3,912 restaurants (2016). There are several branches in the city. It is best for those who like spicy food such as fish fillet in hot chili oil (水煮鱼), crab cream with tofu (蟹黄豆腐), and steamed chicken with chili sauce (口水鸡).
Steamed pork with rice flour (粉蒸肉), fish fillet in hot chili oil (水煮鱼), and cold noodles with shredded chicken (鸡丝凉面) are signature dishes in Rong Yue restaurant. They are noted for presenting the original Sichuan (not watered down) style. it is easy to get to from the Luohu crossing and is half a kilometer from KK100. Listed #957 of 3,912 restaurants in Shenzhen in TripAdvisor.
The Hangzhou/Shanghai cuisine style is called Zhejiang Cuisine. Hangzhou is a city in Zhejiang Province. Seafood is the highlight, and mildly flavored wheat noodles and rice dishes are commonly served. Settings and service may be very elegant.
Jiangnan Cook serves Hangzhou style dishes that feature sweet tastes. The decoration is both modern and classic. It is a popular among Chinese, and ranks 762 of 3,913 Restaurants (2016). The recommended dishes are: Dongpo meat (东坡肉), Longjing shrimp meat (龙井虾仁), glutinous rice with red dates (糯米红枣) and West Lake beef soup (西湖牛肉羹).
Liu Yuan restaurant serves Shanghai style dishes such as steamed buns wrapped with crab meat (蟹粉小笼包), braised ham in honey sauce (蜜汁火肪), and lotus root (莲藕). It serves a business set meal at noon with a more affordable price.
Yuyuan Shanghai Restaurant serves refined and artistic Shanghai style dishes. The decoration is elegant. Steamed buns wrapped with crab meat (蟹粉小笼包), sweet and sour pork side ribs (糖醋小排), crackling chicken (脆皮鸡) and reeves shad (鲥鱼) are recommended dishes.
Dining well is an important part of a tour. It would be helpful to have a local guide who can give you some insider recommendations on where and what to eat.
Please contact us if you need any information about Shenzhen food or would like us to tailor-make you a Shenzhen tour.