Chengdu Eats

Chef Zhou Shizhong at Sichuan Higher Institute of Cuisine

In 2010 Chengdu was designated a Unesco City of Gastronomy.  Writer Mitch Moxley and I traveled to Sichuan’s capital to explore and taste the markets, restaurants and cooking schools that sustain this cultural treasure. Travel feature for the Wall Street Journal.Sichuan food is renowned for its intense, spicy flavors, owed to the liberal use of chili peppers, numbing Sichuan peppercorn, bean paste, garlic and more. Citizens of the West will be familiar with variations of some classic Sichuan (also spelled Szechuan) fare – think kung pao chicken. But the cuisine features some 5,000 different dishes, the vast majority of which have not ventured far beyond China’s borders. (mitch moxley)