Beijing’s ex-pats swooned when Element Fresh opened its doors in the spanking new Village at Sanlitun. Originally from Shanghai, this huge trendy café with an ample outdoor balcony serves some of the healthiest American food in town. The staff is courteous and their color-coded outfits work well with the Scandinavian blonde wood décor. Start off with some homemade hummus accompanied by light and fluffy pita bread or a hearty Manhattan clam chowder. There is a huge range of main courses both Pacific Rim and Continentally inspired but the Cooper’s teriyaki salad with pan-fried chicken is practically a religious experience. Ask for extra teriyaki dressing and croutons. Their selection of enormous smoothies can’t be beat – the Flu Fighter is sure to keep Beijing’s pollution at bay. Its weekend brunch menu is one of the best non-hotel buffet options in the capital so it’s always packed with Beijingers hankering after pancakes or The Cowgirl (pan-fried steak and Western omelet).