Dalian is famous for the freshness of its seafood and fruit, so sit back and eat scallops. And as seafood is the main content of Dalian cuisine, many of the restaurants will have aquariums where you can choose the lucky victim for your plate. The city has a bit of everything from pizza joints, little cafes to strip-mall food courts, curry houses. If you are dining on a budget, the cheaper places are up on Youhao Lu. The New Market Shopping Mall has an enormous food court where you can eat to your heart's content on dishes ranging in price between 4-9 RMB. For good and modestly priced seafood, try Tian Tian Yu Gang.
Although seafood can be found in most downtown restaurants, your best bet is the seafront or the pricey hotels. One of the nicest restaurants on the seafront is the New Orient Seafood City, which serves possibly the best crab cooked by chefs from the popular Cantonese food chain, Bifengtang.
For those not after seafood, Tianjin Street (Tianjin Jie) is dotted with stalls and restaurants serving the usual Chinese fare, and also the local Dalian fried dumplings and pancakes. The Donglaishun Restaurant on Changchun Lu also sell good hotpot dishes for cheap.
For Western food, head for the Greenery Beerhouse on Renmin Lu. If you are just craving a thick slab of cheesy pizza, Pizza King Italian Restaurant will get you a good pie for around 40 RMB. And if you have a taste for the unusual Jinshan Restaurant serves mainly turtle or snake, apparently good for health. Don't forget to try the local fruits, including apples, pears and cherries.
Raw Sea Urchin:
Cut it in two equal parts. Eat it with a spoon. Dip in mustard. The spines might still be trembling, but don't let this scare you off. While it may not look dead, it is.
Admittedly, these things resemble something that you would never eat, but why not give it a shot in soup or raw.
Barbecue restaurants are a favorite with the locals. Wusi Lu is a street dotted with them and just like back home, the best way to wash down barbecued meat, fish and shrimp is with cold beer.