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The Food of Tianjin BinHai

Food for the conventional pallet

Some may think that because TEDA is a new area outside of the city centre, the options for traditional food must be limited and fresh ingredients would be hard to come by. This is far from the truth. The area is rich with conventional Chinese markets. High quality local produce is readily available and at easily affordable prices.

Avenues to abundance

Second Avenue and Third Avenue are arguably the cultural centres of the area due to the abundance of eating options. There are many of the aforementioned local produce markets, several of which offer guaranteed halal meat and other food specifications. While these busy and popular local markets are great for fresh fruit and vegetables, as well as butcher-grade meat and fish, there are also more familiar, western-style supermarkets around the area. On Third Avenue, the Ren Ren Le is the most popular go-to for most of the area’s residents. This is due to the affordable prices, easy-to-navigate aisles and wide range of available foods.

Ren Ren Le – Farm Fresh Ingredients

For the locals, the convenience and range of products of Ren Ren Le combined with the fresh, and even cheaper ingredients from several of the local markets is enough. For many expats in the area, these are also more than sufficient – almost any fresh ingredients you desire can be found in the markets if you look hard enough. It should be noted that many of the stall owners and supermarket workers will have some level of English, so communication is rarely an issue. There are so many of these markets around Binhai that it is difficult to not find what you are looking for. There are different markets for fruits, vegetables, fish, meat and halal meat, as well as combinations of all of these, and they are very easy to find. Just ask a local or take a walk down Second or Third Avenue.

Food for the imported pallet

Many will wonder about imports:

“Where can I find the things that the locals don’t eat?”

“What about the food I love from my home country that I can’t seem to find anywhere in China?”

The answer to these questions is no more than a stop away on the light railway, or a 10-minute taxi journey in either direction. In Tanggu, there is a more rustic and traditional feel. Many of the less common food requests can be found in the ancient Chinese market there, but in the other direction there is the large western supermarket Metro. This is a goldmine for anyone who misses their country’s food. Almost anything you can think of from all over the world can be found there. For example, their cheese selection is rather impressive, as in China it seems difficult to find high quality cheeses.

Something for everyone

Combine the unbelievable range of food sources for home cooking with the hundreds of Western and Chinese restaurants that line every street in the area, and you will never be short of options for eating. Whether you want to try something totally new and outlandish, or you want to stick to what you know and love, TEDA has everything you need (and probably more).