As a result of hundreds of years of culinary experimentation, Suzhou cuisine has developed a unique flavor and a famed reputation. Each course is individually prepared and the emphasis is on the use of quality ingredients, tender meat, fresh vegetables and care in preparation. The result is a selection of fabulous dishes that are unique in color, aroma, shape and taste. Suzhou cuisine is often sweet to taste and beautifully presented.

The fish and vegetable dishes of the area are well known throughout China and some of the best local dishes to try are; Songshu Guiyu (Mandarin Fish, stewed and fried), Qingtang Yuchi (braised shark's fin in a clear soup), Xiangyou Shanhu (stewed shredded eel) and Xigua Ji (young chicken buried in watermelon rind and steamed). The best places to try for good and authentic Suzhou cuisine are on Gangzhou Lu and around the middle of Renmin Lu.