Songhelou Restaurant [Photo provided to chinadaily.com.cn]
Songhelou Restaurant is the most famous local restaurant offering Suzhou cuisine. Located in the prosperous area of Suzhou, it is regarded as one of the time-honored restaurants of China, together with Quanjude Roast Duck in Beijing and Louwailou in Hangzhou.
Songhelou Restaurant was founded in 1737 as a noodle restaurant. It is said that Emperor Qianlong of the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911) frequently came to the restaurant each time he visited Suzhou.
Its most popular dish is Squirrel-shaped Mandarin Fish (Songshu Guiyu in Chinese), a fried fish completely deboned and dressed with sweet and sour sauce, and made to resemble a squirrel.
At present, Songhelou Restaurant has 17 branches throughout the country, mainly scattered in Beijing, Shanghai, Nanjing and Suzhou. Among them, eight branches are in Suzhou, and the oldest branch is located at Guanqian Street.
Add: Yongli Square, No 28, Yunhe Road, Suzhou New District (intersection of Yushan Road)
Opening hours: 10:40-13:30, 16:40-20:30
Transportation: take bus No 328, get off at Jinlong Restaurant Station.
Add: No 141, Guanqian Street, Gusu district, Suzhou
Tel: +86-512-67700688; +86-512-67272285
Opening hours: 11:00am-13:30pm; 17:00pm-20:30pm (advance bookings recommended)
Bean curd and crab made by Songhelou Restaurant. [Photo/Weibo: suzhoulvyouju]
Squirrel-shaped Mandarin Fish made in Songhelou Restaurant. [Photo/Weibo: suzhoulvyouju]
Its most famous dish is Squirrel-shaped Mandarin Fish (Songshu Guiyu in Chinese), known nationwide. It is a fried fish completely deboned and dressed with sweet and sour sauce, and made to resemble a squirrel.