Located in the tea fields close to Lingyin Temple in Mei Hong Guan, you can find a pure land for your heart and soul. The address is 80 North Meiling Road, but it’s not that easy to find because the addresses don’t go in order. One second you’re at 74, the next you’re at 216. Google Maps doesn’t help either, as it led us to the wrong place. So this is how you find it: Take North Meiling Road, heading west, 300m before the sign pointing to a small road to Amanfayun, on your left you will see a tea field with two big houses; that’s it. There is a bus stop for Y4 and 837 right in front of it, look for that.
Unlike other vegetarian restaurants all making soy products into all kinds of faux-meat dishes, Mei Hong Guan is more focused on natural and organic materials, there is no MSG or chicken powder in the food, they use rapeseed oil to cook, because apparently it contains 80.3%-90% high oleic, making it healthier than olive oil. You can order A La Carte, or there is a lucky number “eight” set-menu priced at 188RMB, 288RMB, 388RMB, 588RMB, and 888RMB. We went for the reasonable 288RMB iteration. It’s a nine-course meal, but the portions are small. The first course was 莲海珍味, a cold dish with lotus, fungus, and some wild vegetables. It was fresh and tasty. Next was Sea Snail and Matsutake Soup 竹荪松茸盅. Matsutake can be very expensive, the difference between the set menu prices is due to this mushroom and some other rare vegetables. The following courses were Grapefruit and Rocket Salad柚子芝麻菜 (it’s not grapefruit season so they used raisins instead, but it still tasted good), Organic Cress and Needle Mushrooms有机水芹金针菇, Mei Hong Organic Vegetable Stir-Fry美宏有机时蔬, Stir-fried Water Chestnut with Snow Beans and Lotus 荷塘月色, “Steak” with Black Pepper御品牛排皇, Tofu Stir-fried with “Bacon” 榆耳特色豆腐, Papaya Stewed with Bamboo Bird’s Nest木瓜炖竹燕. Now you could see the “Steak” was not really steak, it’s a molecular dish, but it REALLY tastes like steak, and the “Bacon” actually is Elm ear. We washed down everything with a big jar of very precious and expensive Orchid Juice. It tasted so fresh that it almost feels like you are drinking grass juice.
Take bus Y4 or 837 and get off at San Tian Zhu Station 三天竺, the restaurant is right behind it. They also provide health treatments, spa and facial services. Parking is available. No English menu.