The state dinner included a mix of local dishes and fare familiar to Americans
Donald J. Trump is working on his palate for international cuisine. During a stay in Tokyo, he indulged in a full-blooded American meal: burgers, steak, and ice cream. While this doesn’t come as much of a surprise in light of his normal diet — chicken fingers, Keebler Vienna Fingers, and Diet Coke — there was a momentary hint of adventure for the president in South Korea, where he ate beef ribs and 360-year-old soy sauce.
On November 9, Trump attended a state dinner at Beijing’s Great Hall of the People, hosted by China’s president Xi Jinping. According to Quartz, the event’s menu featured a mix of local cuisine and fare familiar to 45 — a stewed beef steak in tomato sauce sounds eerily similar to well-done steak with ketchup. There were also options for braised vegetables in a broth, grouper fillets in hot chile oil, and Kung Pao chicken — a dish well-known among Americans, although the Chinese version is slightly different.
When photos of the menu were posted to social media, people claimed the menu was too plain. According to the Hong Kong Free Press, one commenter trolled a high-profile attendee who posted the menu to the Weibo social media platform: “Chairman, my mom can cook these dishes — next time just come over to my house.”
The dry red and white wines served were made by China’s largest wine enterprise, Great Wall Wine, based at the foot of the Hebei stretch of the famous landmark. A bottle of 2011 Great Wall Riesling can be had for 198 yuan — roughly $30.
Similarly, Barack Obama’s honorary dinner in China in 2009 featured Chinese-style beef steak, stir-fried wild rice stem and asparagus, and roasted grouper with red and white wine. But 44 and 45 don’t always share the same tastes — here are the different eating habits of Presidents Obama and Trump.