Very characterful, with a real feeling of Hong Kong, Imperial China is reached down a Lisle Street alley that opens into a little courtyard complete with wooden footbridge and bijou fish pond. The à la carte menu of Cantonese dishes is most notable for its seafood choice. The lunchtime dim sum selection attracts Chinese families at the weekends, when things tend to get hectic.
This is the Chinatown spin-off of the Bayswater favourite, serving its signature juicy roast duck as well as commendable versions of other Cantonese-style roast meats. Service can be brusque and there are queues every night: you’ll be expected to pay the bill as soon as you’ve finished.
With a smarter decor than most Chinatown gaffs, this is the favourite of many expats, who go for comforting plates of roast duck or pork on rice. The list of clay-pot dishes is intriguing: lamb breast (on the bone) with preserved bean curd is a hearty, homely and richly flavoured dish.
An old-school Chinatown restaurant that attracts a divergent bunch of dim sum devotees young and old, tourists and Londoners, Chinese and others. Those in the know arrive early for the lunchtime snacks, sampling reliably rendered classics such as yam croquette, prawn cheung fun or chiu chow fun gwor.