Chinese food. It definitely brings up different memories for different people but, for me, Chinese food is a childhood memory for sure. See, my dad and I used to get Chinese take-out on special occasions and then go home and watch a movie. He even taught me how to use chopsticks (practising with straws while on a trip to Mauritius for my eighth birthday). And whenever I eat Chinese food, I think about my dad. So, armed with great memories, I was only all too excited to venture down to Royal China Queensway for a gorgeous London Chinese experience.
Royal China has numerous branches in and around London. I was faced with the very tough decision of choosing the original Queensway branch or the flagship Baker Street branch … but in London, as it so often happens, proximity is key and Queensway won. But they also have branches in Fulham, Canary Riverside, Marleybone, and Harrow on the Hill. Specialising in Cantonese food, Royal China is regarded by many as one of the best Cantonese restaurants in London.
The Queensway Royal China Interior
Upon entering the restaurant space, it was easy to see why. The interior of Royal China is, indeed, royal. While I do find most upper-class Chinese restaurants come with a certain amount of pizzazz, Royal China is definitely the prettiest one I’ve been to. The Queensway branch is almost cave-like, which felt a little odd for lunch when I usually prefer being able to look out, but would be perfect for dinner … and indeed is rather perfect in transporting you to a wholly different world.
The Extensive Menu
The menu at Royal China is not simple. They had their standard menu, their dim sum menu (which also included standard and dessert menu items), as well as their lunch menu, and Kassandra and I were slightly overwhelmed by the immense choice. That said, we later did look through the allergen-sheets (Kassandra is lactose-intolerant and we had to find a suitable dessert for her), and there are tons more dishes that weren’t even on the menu! So you’ll definitely be spoiled for choice here.
“Slimy, Yet Satisfying”
We started our dining experience – as any good Asian dining experience should – with some delicious dim sum. Our choices included the Prawn & Chive Dumplings (£4.90), Honest-Roast Pork Puffs (£4.30), Pan-Fried Pork Dumplings (£4.30), and the Honey-Roast Pork Cheung Fun (£5.30). These were all insanely good, and Kassandra even described them as the best dim sum she’d ever had.
The Prawn & Chive Dumplings and Pan-Fried Pork Dumplings seem to be more “common” dim sum options, and both of these were very good. The Honey-Roast Pork Puffs were interesting, like little pork pies – delicious, yet terrible date food!
And the Honey-Roast Pork Cheung Fun, well, I keep on wanting to describe them in the same apt way Simba describes his first slug in The Lion King: “Slimy, yet satisfying.” No, I’m not comparing the Cheung Fun to slugs. But the description is perfect. These weren’t Kassandra’s favourite, but I actually really enjoyed them – like a slimy rice paper with pork insides. Slimy, yet satisfying.
Cantonese Duck and Sweet & Sour Pork
For mains, I decided to try something I hadn’t had before: 1/4 Quarter Roast Duck Cantonese-Style (£12.80). Kassandra went for her favourite timeless classic: Sweet & Sour Pork (£12.80). We also had a portion of Egg Fried Rice (£4.80) and Steamed Rice (£3.80). All of the meals were delicious, though the duck portion looked a little scarce without accompanying veggies (note for a future visit), and the pork was a little lacking in the sweet and sour sauce department. But the sauce that came with the duck was so insanely good, we ended up smothering that all over. And it all made for a very hearty meal … and an equally delicious dinner as take-away later that evening.
After mains, the quality of service died down a little, and we had to wait for a good while before our plates were cleared and we got to re-look at the dessert menus. But we finally managed to grab someone’s attention – and our long study of the menu began. This is were the aforementioned allergen list came in, though we did eventually decide to order two dairy-inclusive desserts. Pretty much meaning that Kassandra got to watch me eat. But I was in foodie heaven so this may have been quite a show.
See, Royal China does something interesting on their dessert side. And that something interesting happens to be something I’m slightly obsessed with: Mango. So I chose the Chilled Mango Pudding (£3.90) and the Chilled Mango & Pomelo Sago (£4.30). Both of these look prettier in the menu than they actually are, but what they lack in looks they certainly make up for in taste. The sago pudding – as you’ll see from the picture – isn’t the prettiest of the lot but WOW. This was, without doubt, one of the most delicious desserts I have ever tasted. The mango pudding was yum and fresh as well … but nothing compared to the sago. Refreshing, sweet, and full of mango deliciousness. Definitely a winning recipe!!!
Visit Royal China
If you want to share my love for mango desserts, sago pudding, and slimy yet satisfying gooey goodness (and everything else), then you’re just gonna have to check out Royal China too! Get all their details below.
Royal China Queensway
Address: 13 Queensway, London W2 4QJ
Call: +44 207 221 2535
Article Date: November 2019
Photos by @delishkass.
MISSED OUR LAST LONDON CHRONICLES ARTICLE? IT’S ON THE LEONARDSLEE AFTERNOON TEA.
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