Feeling hot, hot, hot: high quality Sichuan cuisine at Le Me

24th Nov 2019


Picture the scene:

It's a Saturday evening, you've got family and friends with you on their first trip to Chongqing. You want to take them for traditional Sichuan food, and give them a taste of the true 'ma la', numbing spice experience. But at the same time, you don't want to scare them off. You like these people - you want to take them to a traditional-yet-modern, clean and friendly environment where they can have the food presented to them on fire, or surrounded by dry ice. That's not too much to ask is it?


本期嘉宾 | Emily

Emily Hodson is a 27 year old British national living in Chongqing with her boyfriend since January 2019. She likes travelling, languages, meeting new people and dragging her friends to KTV.

CQ Expat Guide was invited to experience this very scene at Le Mei, Le Meridien Chongqing, Nan'an, which this year is celebrating its tenth anniversary.


"The first appetisers out of the kitchen from the chefs was a dish containing tender pork with garlic sauce, covered in a spicy chilli oil."

Appetizer - Sliced Pork with Garlic Sauce

开胃菜 - 蒜泥白肉

Spicy level/麻辣指数:🌶🌶


"Then followed a deconstructed salad, with ice grass - a new ingredient for me! - lettuce, lotus root and, of course, a spicy dressing. This was delicious and refreshing; the vegetables were fresh and crisp, and they provided a nice smoothing experience in the mouth for if the other spicy dishes got too much."

Ice Grass, Lettuce and Lotus Root with Sauce


Spicy level/麻辣指数:🌶


"Another mouth-soother was the duck soup, a rich watery broth infused with the flavours of the duck and which came out piping hot and could be enjoyed throughout the meal. It was at this stage that we ordered some local beer, to cool our mouths and enjoy the meal in true Sichuan fashion."

Duck and Bamboo Fungus Soup



"When our main courses came out, it was a spectacle to behold. First, fish head with chilli and noodles was served in a large platter covered in chillis, served with soft thick noodles which had similar consistency to tagliatelle - this was a really delicious dish, even if you do have to be careful of the bones!"

Fish Head with Chili


Spicy level/麻辣指数:🌶🌶


"Our next dish - and the spiciest so far with Sichuan peppercorns bundled proudly on top - was stewed beef with Chinese yam. This came presented in a black cauldron-style pot, sitting on top of flames, and you could hear the stew bubbling away inside. Hot in every sense of the word! This one took some getting used to, and a couple of sips of beer, as the delicious tender beef was covered in the numbing spice. Not for the feint hearted!"

Stewed Beef with Chinese Yam


Spicy level/麻辣指数:🌶🌶🌶


"Next to be delivered to us by the chefs was stewed turtle. This is not something I had been expecting, and it took me by surprise - I had never eaten turtle before and nor have I ever really been tempted - but in the spirit of the experience I tried a small piece of the spicy meat, which had a texture not too dissimilar from frog (so a bit like chicken, a bit like beef)."

Stewed Turtle


Spicy level/麻辣指数:🌶

接下来是… 甲鱼!甲鱼?惊讶状!这还是我第一次吃甲鱼,以前没有尝试过。于是我夹了一小块尝了下,味道还不错!吃起来有点像青蛙,有点像鸡肉,还有点像牛肉。

"Whilst the broth was delicious and the meat was tender, the fact that it was turtle was a little too much for me and I stuck to some of my preferred dishes, which included Mizutaki fried pork, beans, mushroom and red pepper, served in a nest of dried noodles. This was, again, beautifully presented, and the spice was much softer than some of the other chilli-heavy dishes. The meat wasn't gristly, it was cooked to perfection and I kept going back for more."

Mizutaki Fried Pork



"The well-known laziji (super spicy chicken with dried chills) and a type of shrimp and rice soup with a crispy topping were also crowd pleasers and well received by all guests at the table."

Shrimp and Fried Rice Soup



Overall, this was a really unique experience that I haven't had elsewhere in Chongqing. The food was beautifully presented, delicious, and spicy - as you would expect from this style of food! It would definitely be a good, safe place to take family and friends looking for local delicacies, high-quality cooking and friendly customer service, in a bustling neighbourhood with a real local atmosphere.


Food quality/★★★★★

About Le Mei


Le Mei is located on the 3rd floor of Le Méridien hotel and serves classic Chinese dishes. The dining hall consists of 14 tables with 76 seats that can welcome up to 92 guests, surrounded by 8 private rooms named after Qin, Han, Sui, Tang, Ming, Qing, Yuan, Song dynasties, which can accommodate 4-16 guests. Besides there is a grand private room called "R&F" for business or private dinner which can accommodate up to 16 guests. It offers delicious Sichuan cuisine and exquisite Cantonese food, and has chefs from all over the country to serve Chinese dishes with a variety of styles.

乐美中餐厅位于富力艾美酒店三层,为客人提供经典中式菜肴。就餐大厅有76个客位,可摆放14桌,容纳92位客人。周围环绕着8个以秦、汉、隋、唐、明、清、元、宋朝代为名的包房,分别可容纳4-16位客人不等,另外设有一个最大包房 “富力”,可接待16位食客,专供商务宴请或私人聚会之用。除麻辣可口的川菜之外,经验丰富的大厨还擅于烹制精美考究的特色粤菜,时而聘请全国各地主厨奉上花样不断的中式菜肴。

- 美食之旅已为您开启 -

023 8638 8888 - 6513

Operating Time

3F, Le Meridien Chongqing, Nan'an | 重庆富力艾美酒店3楼

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