5 Nanxiawazi Hutong, Dongcheng, Beijing, China, 100009

(86 10) 8402-5098

Rustic is the best word to describe this quaint neighborhood Italian restaurant located in the old alleyways of Beijing. Mercante’s founder Omar Maseroli has fashioned a trattoria after the eateries in his hometown of Emilia-Romagna. Charm and home-style authentic Italian cuisine are delivered in spades here. The menu is select, small, and reasonably priced. There is a blackboard of rotating specials and a handful of meat, fish, and pasta dishes, all done with flair. The homemade tortellini – filled with delicacies such as leek and pine nuts or radicchio and walnut -- are particularly moreish. Meals can be washed down with Italian wine -- and do not miss the delicious dessert trio of rice torte, tiramisu and panna cotta. Mercante’s tiny, lovingly created intimate space makes booking ahead a must. For those eager to see the world go by ask to sit on the two stools located in the restaurant window overlooking the hutong.

Written by Clarissa Sebag-Montefiore

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