All this month, we’ll be introducing 50 picks for some of the best family-friendly restaurants in Beijing. These reviews originally appeared in the January/February 2013 issue of beijingkids (see end of post).
Type of cuisine: Indian
English menu? Yes, with pictures and descriptions
General kid-friendliness of menu: There’s a range of appetizers, curries, and tandoor and barbecued dishes ranging from non-spicy to very spicy. Vegetarians will find plenty to love here, including meat-free curries, South Indian dishes, and appetizers. Curries may look small, but they’re actually quite filling with a side of rice or naan. All the meat used at Ganges is halal.
Best dishes for adults: Tandoori barbeque platter (RMB 128), Chicken Kadai (RMB 55), Lamb Rogan Josh (RMB 65)
Kids’ menu? No
Best dishes for kids: Chicken Lollipop (RMB 42), assorted naan breads (RMB 12-20), vegetable samosas (RMB 28)
Kids’ play area? No
Play areas nearby: Shimao Department Store, Fundazzle, and Beijing Blue Zoo (the latter two are near the south gate of Worker’s Stadium)
Kid-friendly staff? Yes, and English-speaking. The Indian managers are very attentive and professional, but service among the Chinese staff can be spotty.
Bathroom: You have to exit Ganges to access Shimao’s public sit-down bathrooms. Turn left outside of Ganges as if heading towards the main complex, then take a right just after the store across from the restaurant and it’s just down the hall. No changing table.
Seating: Cushy indoor seating in the form of tables, chairs, and booths; highchairs available
Price: RMB 350-400
Credit card accepted? Yes, both foreign and local
Parking available? Yes, Parking is free for the first two hours. For every RMB 100 you spend at the Shi Mao department store, the additional hour of parking is free (show your receipt). Otherwise, it is RMB 10 per hour.
Must-order item: Ganges specializes in curries, with over 80 kinds available on the menu.
Butter chicken (RMB 55) is a safe choice for picky eaters, while the more adventurous should try the distinctive Pomfret Masala (RMB 98). Vegetarians will feel at home here with curries like Palak Paneer (RMB 48) and Channa Masala (RMB 48).
In a nutshell: There’s a reason why Ganges has won Best Indian/Pakistani in the Beijinger’s Reader Restaurant Awards for five years in a row. Combining a wide range of North and South Indian dishes with excellent service, the restaurant draws diners of all stripes.
Additional notes: This branch of Ganges can be a bit tricky to find at first. Take the escalator to the second floor of Shimao Department Store, walk all the way to the northern end of the mall, and Ganges will be on your right.
Also try: The Taj Pavilion, Khajuraho, Tadka
Photo Courtesy of Ganges