Da Rong He is a well known restaurant family in Chengdu with several locations around town, and their La Défense location has grown popular since its opening a few years ago.We walked past the towering chunk of typically subtle referential architecture that the restaurant is named for, though the view of the Global Centre through the large arch reminded us that we were in Chengdu rather than Paris. The menu also placed us squarely in Chengdu with more traditional than trendy Sichuanese dishes.
Warm crocks ofrice steamed with corn and pumpkin were already on the tables for the lunch crowd. We ordered some ribs, which had been lightly breaded and deep fried and served in a pile of crispy fragrant garlic and fried chillies, and which felt more like a southeast Asian than Sichuanese dish. We thought the name of their signature fish dish, Kai Men Hong, was about lifting up one of the red peppers and seeing the split meaty head of Hua Lian river fish underneath, but our guests explained it was about a business that starts up and enjoys instant success. Whatever the meaning, the dish was impressive both in taste and in presentation. We also got a soupy dish of taro and greens. They had a self-serve table with tomatoes, watermelon, white fungus soup and Cantonese herbal jelly, very refreshing on a hot summer day. The crowd in the room was mostly business dining with some younger people and families. The staff are obviously used to handling large numbers of customers efficiently.
The bill was 200RMB and some for three, but the server helped us to buy a groupon to get the cost down to about 50RMB per person.
Address: No.517 Jincheng Avenue, Gaoxin District 高新区锦城大道517号
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