Young Cheng

  • Restaurants
  • Chinese
0 Love It
Leicester Square

Not to be confused with its bargain-basement siblings on Wardour Street and Shaftesbury Avenue (respectively specialising in buffet dining and one-bowl dishes), this branch of the Young Cheng mini-group is, by Chinatown standards, a smart, sit-down affair. Sure, there are roast ducks dangling in the window, but there are also proper tablecloths (without any tell-tale disposable overlay), dark glossy furniture, and pretty red lanterns casting a glow down the long, lean room.

Efficient, welcoming staff serve up a wide array of Cantonese fare, but it’s the simplest dishes that remain the most popular, with bowls of steaming noodles (around £5.50) drawing groups of Chinese students and retirees, while many of the rest come for daily dim sum.

On our visit, the cooking was hit and miss. Low points included a stodgy and slightly tepid taro croquette; and sesame paper prawn rolls that had spent too long in a pan of underheated oil, emerging greasy rather than golden, but there was plenty of excellence, too.

Our moist, sticky ‘glutinous rice parcel’, with its generous, meaty filling (a chunk of Chinese sausage here, a morsel of chicken or shrimp there) impressed, as did a well-executed basket of sui mai (a classic dumpling quartet, here made with tightly minced pork and crab meat); and a set of shimmering steamed dumplings, densely packed with sweet prawns, chopped chives and tiny diced water chestnuts. As at its siblings, prices are resolutely low (with most dishes hovering at the £2.80 mark), so while this Lisle Street restaurant may sometimes lack finesse, its fans feel you can afford to overlook the odd blip.

Venue name: Young Cheng
Address: 22 Lisle St
Opening hours: Open noon-11.30pm Mon-Sat; noon-10.30pm
Transport: Tube: Leicester Square tube
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Average User Rating

3 / 5

Rating Breakdown

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  • 1 star:1
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Ed. T

Our favourite restaurant in Chinatown is frequently changing, largely I suspect, because the chefs change so frequently as well. A recent trip to Young Cheng though has proved it to currently be one of the better restaurants in Chinatown, and its dim sum is also great! 

As ever in Chinatown, the staff are a bit curt and brusque, but Young Cheng's food puts it ahead of the others easily, and it also happens to be cheaper than many of the others. Recommendations would be the dim sum in general, and getting a takeaway portion of the 3 roast meats - far less fat/bone on their meat than any others!  

Jess Z

We went there for lunch during 1hr lunch break. No one welcomed us in but a waiter with no face expression pointed us the seats to sit down. Placed order in the 1st min after arrived and received a soup. Waited overall 40 mins still didn't get food so decided to leave with time wasted and anger.

Asked a waiter few times during the 40mins. 1st time was after 20mins, he said we didn't place order. We found it very strange since we placed the order with him and he served us the soup. And of course we told him we've ordered and was with him, and it’s his mistake. And it’s ok, if he can take our order now and to serve the food as soon as possible, since we have limited time and we both ordered roast duck+ crispy pork with rice which ingredients are already made, just need to chop the meat to put on rice with a bit duck sauce, which max needs 5mins to prepare.

However, he walked away without any apology and appreciation of our understanding, and let us waited another 10mins. Nothing comes, and we spoke to him again and to a waitress. Then they started to ‘educate’ us:

‘you didn’t place the order.’

‘Yes, we did’

‘with whom?’

‘with him’ – both of us pointed at the waiter

‘we don’t have you order, you need to place an order earlier next time’

‘we did twice and you’ve serve the soup.’

‘no, you didn’t’

Then me, who has shorter temper than my colleague, can’t stand it anymore then stand up and decided to leave, left with empty stomach, but full of anger…don't understand how come customer can be served rudely like this. Definitely will not go again. 

P.S. Went there before, the waiter and waitress are always grumpy, but food is ok. But it's no more worth to try, since it may ruin your day.


We had to wait a while for the food, but it was worth the wait Good portion sizes and the food arrived piping hot. The service wasn't too bad either. We will be back.