Huajiayiyuan was one of those restaurants that was always on my list of places to take visiting friends, colleagues, and clients. When I first “discovered” it, based on a recommendation by Nator, I had a fabulous time. I took visiting relatives and it was a huge success. The restaurant is located at Guijie and used to offer a wonderful atmosphere, good food, and excellent service. However, every time I visited after that I was more and more disappointed. Here is a list of reasons why you will likely never see me there again.
- The place is always packed and there is always a line. If you want to go there on a weekend you need to book weeks in advance. I went there on a Tuesday, I was told a table is to free up withing 10 minutes, there was no line. I ended waiting at the door for 53 minutes.
- Service is getting worse. I am not sure why this is, but my guess is because they just can’t deal with the sheer amount of people trying to order food. Food came to the table very very slowly.
- They no longer serve their owned brewed beers. I thought their green beers were a nice touch, you’ll have to settle for Tsingtaos now.
- A few of my favorite dishes have disappeared off the menu, others seem to have gone up in price.
- Frankly, the food is not that great for the price they are asking for right now. The duck was bad, the duck soup was awful. The heizhao niuliu was uneatable.
There are over 100 restaurants within walking distance (after all it is Guijie) serving anything from huoguo to shaokao. I suggest you stop at one of those instead.