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Beijing pictures, Compass Cafe

A small and enchanting café in the back outside the Forbidden City, Compass café draws in tourists with more than just coffee.


Inside this JingShanQianJi street Café, I also found a large selection of Chinese teas and snacks, in addition to original Jamaican and Brazilin coffees. One cup of tea or coffee usually cost less than RMB50, which was quite good considering its location.


But that was not all. Compass also carried many wonderful Chinese handicrafts like Chinese knots, kites, china figurines, and cloth puppet. With free WIFI, you could surf on the internet for free. They also had a printer in case you need to print a map or a guide (RMB 3 per page).


And the services didn’t stop there. To see the sights around the Forbidden City, Compass rent bicycles. They also have tickets to acrobatic shows, Peking Opera, and kung fu demonstrations, as well as packaged tours of the Great Wall. Here, you have access to basically all the places to visit in Beijing.


The owner was friendly and kind, and spoke fluent English. He said he wanted visitors to see everything Beijing has to offer.


What I appreciate

The wide array of services


What customers appreciate

Considerable services, good prices, English-speaking owner

Beijing pictures, Ajisen Ramen Eatery

Ajisen Ramen is a fast food restaurant that offers flavored noodle soups. They have opened many eateries in Beijing, and is loved by the locals and tourists alike. Customers praise the restaurant for its savory taste and clean environment. 

They offer various flavors of ramen along with cold dishes, fried rice, salads, and chicken wings. Of course, you can never go wrong with the original flavored Ajisen ramen (RMB 20). But it’s certainly not the only popular choice. Spice lovers might want the Volcano ramen (火山拉面, RMB 25). While vegetarians may choose the pickled vegetable cold ramen (泡菜汁冷面, RMB 22). 

Every time I visit Ajisen, I order the classical Ajisen ramen and a plate of cold dish called Octopus bean curd (RMB 8). The ramen comes with a light, white soup, with pieces of beef and egg topping off thin noodles. Octopus bean curd is a Japanese cold dish with a very yummy sauce.


Expect to spend between RMB 30 ~ RMB 40 there per person. The waiters and waitresses cannot speak English, but the menu is written in both English and Chinese.


What I appreciated:

The classical Ajisen ramen


What customers appreciate:

Good taste, various kinds of ramen

Beijing pictures, Mr.Pizza

Mr. Pizza neither originates from the US, nor from Italy. It comes from South Korea, and offers various pizza dishes with a mix of the east and the west.


I visited its branch near the Carrefour shopping mall entrance in the Zhongguancun area. The menu featured a wide selection to choose from. I found the seafood pizza with mainly shrimp, the all-meat pizza with chicken, beef, and pork, and veggie pizza with mainly tomatoes, potatoes, and other vegetables. When I asked the waitress for a recommendation, she said to try the Golden Potato Pizza (金牌土豆披萨) priced at RMB 138 for large. This pizza, part of their ‘Golden Series’. tasted surprisingly delicious. I would strongly recommend their 'Golden Series'.


In addition to pizza, Mr. Pizza also offers Hot Cheese Spaghetti, soups, refillable salad, and fried cheese rice. Hot Cheese Spaghetti (RMB 28) is a personal favorite of mine and many other regulars.


Service is excellent, as they take good care of every customer. And you can always find a waitress who can speak some English.


What I appreciated:

Hot Cheese Spaghetti


What customers appreciate:

Good atmosphere, delicious pizza

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Beijing Shopping: Compass cafe draws in tourists with more than just coffee.