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About Nanjing

-- Nanjing Brief Introduction

-- Nanjing Local Features

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-- Dining & Cuisine in Nanjing

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Cuisines in Nanjing

Traditional Nanjing cuisine is known as Jin Su cuisine and is notable for the emphasis placed on original flavor and carefully selected raw ingredients. Nanjing dishes are traditionally bright in color and use only a moderate amount of seasoning but a significant amount of oil.

Jin Su specialties that should be sampled include: Jinling roast duck, steamed duck cutlets, salted duck, Longchi carp and "Eight delicacies soup". The "Eight delicacies" are: fish, water chestnut, lotus root, vine, parsley, arrowroot and lotus seeds. This is a popular dish especially around "Moon Festival" time (roughly around the middle of August). There are numerous classical restaurants serving up these delicacies and the area around the Confucius Temple has some great places to taste good Nanjing food.

Western and Japanese food is also becoming increasingly popular and there is a good selection of Western and Chinese food available around the universities off Shanghai Lu. Browse our Restaurant Index for more detailed information. Of course, the big hotels such as The Hilton and The Jinling also have good restaurants. McDonalds and KFC are hugely popular here.

Nanjing Steamed Duck

As early as 1910, the Nanjing steamed Duck cutlet was awarded a national award by the Qing government and is now popular in Hong Kong and Southeast Asia. This dish is characterized by its appetizing appearance and tender and delicate taste. 

The cooking process involves steeping, boiling, braising and baking the duck. The best places to taste this are the snack bars around the Confucius Temple area of the city.

Salted Duck

Delicious and tender salted duck is a Nanjing specialty, rich in flavor but not too greasy. Salted duck hangs from many city shop windows and the best time to purchase and eat the duck is said to be August when the duck is seasoned with Osmathus flowers and has a delicate flavor. 

The best place to sample this dish is in the Wan Qing Lou Restaurant in the south of the city.

Jinling Snacks

Jinling is the former name given to Nanjing and today it is not only the name of the tasty beer brewed in the city but also the name associated with the local traditional snacks which are named after the area. These snacks originate in the Confucius Temple area of the city. 

This district has long been the center of Nanjing cuisine and today there are many great restaurants and snack bars around here where you can sample traditional Jinling snacks. Local specialties include: deep fried dough cake with scallion and salted duck gizzard.


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