Liu Quan Ju (Willow Spring House, 柳泉居) established about the reign (1567 – 1572) of Ming Dynasty's Long Qing Emperor. It has traditionally been a famous Beijing Yellow Wine tavern. In the past, there were four kinds of yellow wine taverns. Apart from Beijing Yellow Wine, Shaoxing, Shandong and Shanxi vintages were popular in the capital city. 

Liu Quan Ju RestaurantMerchants from Shandong Province funded and run Liu Quan Ju Tavern in its earliest stage, it was a spacious hall in front with a large garden in the backyard. According to some historical documents, there was an old and big willow tree in the courtyard, and a freshwater well just by the side of it. The master of the tavern used the water to brew the yellow wine, which taste would be light, pure and wafted fragrance in the air. Customers called it "vintage of the jade spring". Additionally, the dishes for yellow wine that Liu Quan Ju made were very famous at that time.

In fact, there was no name for the tavern when it first opened to Beijing's customers in the Ming Dynasty. Yan Song (严嵩) was a bad guy and a devoted janizary of the Ming Empower Shi Zong, who once said, "there will be no knife or sword can kill him". Shi Zong's successor, Mu Zong decided to get rid of this man. However Mu Zong could not kill him because the oath made by the predecessor. He sacked Yan Song and confiscated all his wealthy assets, only left for him was a silver bowl, by which Yan could make a poor living by begging. No one would like to help him because Beijing people hated him so much. One day, Yan Song was extremely hungry and thirsty, he tried very hard to walk and he came to the yellow wine tavern. He smelt the aroma of wine and he could no longer to go on. He asked the boss to give him something to eat and drink. The boss knew that he was the bad guy because he had a silver bowl. Yan was excellent in Chinese calligraphy, the boss told him while providing stationery, "I will allow you to drink, but first you have to think a name to my tavern". After a brief thinking, Yan wrote "Liu Quan Ju" (Willow Spring House). He died of hunger later, but the name became the brand of this great tavern since then.

In 1949, Liu Quan Ju moved to 217 Nandajie Street, Xinjiekou (新街口南大街217号), Beijing. Since then the restaurant has essentially been serving dishes that mixed the essence of southern and northern China, also tailor the tastes to Beijing local customers. Crab Banquet that consists of many crab dishes is welcomed. Crab meat is the main ingredient with a lot of choicest materials. The cold dish, "Crab in the Lotus Pond in Autumn" is made of Chinese mushroom and carved into a crab's shape, just like a crab in a lotus pool.

 

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