Royal China

Restaurants, Chinese Canary Wharf
3 out of 5 stars
4 out of 5 stars
(4user reviews)
Royal China

A traditional Hong Kong restaurant in Canary Wharf.

Nestled on Canary Wharf’s stark waterfront, this branch of the Cantonese restaurant looks glamorous against the modernist-esque riverside. It’s big and airy inside – there are hanging lanterns, golden decorations, and plenty of mirrors strapped to the walls.

The food is delicious. The vegetable dim sum was fragrant and light, spiked with crunchy bean sprouts. The satay chicken arrived neatly arranged on skewers ,with a generous bowl of stupendously nutty satay sauce. A larger dish of ‘Shaolin Monks’ vegetables came in a cavernous, clay pot – a bubbling broth with baby sweetcorn, pak choi, rice noodles and tofu. It was smoky, earthy, and fresh – like the organic scents wafting from a north London allotment. The roast duck Cantonese-style, too, was majestic, with tender slabs of meat slathered in moreish plum sauce. Even dessert – not always a strong suit in Cantonese restaurant – was worthy of rave reviews. Freshly battered banana fritters were sesame-studded on the outside, revealing molten fruit at their centres. Portions are generous, the prices reasonable.

Still, this Royal China has its pitfalls. On a stuffy summer evening, we weren’t allowed to sit outside, which put a dampener on the experience. The service, while prompt, was also fairly brusque. The food may be tremendous: just don’t expect much hospitality.

By: Ella Braidwood

Posted:

Venue name: Royal China
Contact:
Address: 30 Westferry Circus
London
E14 8RR
Transport: Tube: Canary Wharf
Price: Dinner for two with drinks and service: around £110.
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Static map showing venue location

Average User Rating

3.5 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:1
  • 4 star:2
  • 3 star:0
  • 2 star:0
  • 1 star:1
LiveReviews|4
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tastemaker

There are a few Royal China restaurants; however I’ve always found the Canary Wharf branch to be the most consistent and seating is more comfortable with more space and natural light coming in from the riverside and has become my go-to for yum cha nowadays; especially since it had such a great stamp of approval from multiple discerning aunties and of course, my mother. The dim sum here is very very good. The steamed prawn dumplings (hā gáau/ 蝦餃) have a really well done pastry that is elastic, delicate, but yet doesn’t fall apart easily; while the prawn filling is crispy, seafood sweet and has great bite to it. All the classics such as sīu máai dumplings (燒賣), rice noodle rolls (chéung fán/ 腸粉), chicken feet (fuhng jáau/ 鳳爪) and glutinous rice wrapped in lotus leaf (noh máih gāi/ 糯米雞) are done really well. The only one that was disappointing, lacking in ingredients and flavour was the turnip cake (lòh bah gōu/ 蘿蔔糕). They also do a number of lunch mains such as congee (粥), wonton noodle soup and Cantonese chow mien (豉油王炒麵) which are great fillers when you have a large group. The egg tarts (dàntǎ/ 蛋撻) here are made with the more traditional puff pastry and are crisp and perfectly sized to lessen the guilt. Make sure you check their specials menu as they often do interesting variations of the classics, for an example with the sesame ball (jīn dēui/ 煎堆) they filled it with taro instead of the usual red bean or custard filling (pictured). Yum cha is about having a big gathering together and a good old chinwag; so the bigger your group the better as then you can try a bigger selection and variety of dishes - I recommend going with at least four people. 


Tip: they don’t take bookings for yum cha and are first come first serve, so make sure you arrive early (just before 12 noon) to ensure you get a table, especially if you’re a rather big group. 


Good For: large groups, casual lunch/ dinner, celebrations, authentic, special occasions, catch up with friends 
tastemaker

Best place for Chinese food in east London. Food is amazing, highly recommend to try the dim sum on weekends. The restaurant is normally crowded so you will need to get there early. My favourite dish is the cheongfun with peanut Sauce. having came from Asia, I am impressed that all the dim sum here is authentic and tasty. Of course prices are quite expensive but worth it if you want good Chinese food.

Didn't give five stars as the service is not As good maybe because the restaurant is always packed. Still recommend this place if you are in east London and need to satisfy a craving for Chinese food!

tastemaker

Introduced to the Canary Wharf Royal China by a group of friends. While not a restaurant that I would typically go out of the way to visit, it appears to be a very popular local haunt. The food was good, and the staff casual and generally friendly. Unfortunately no bookings were allowed, and the place was still full of people after our meal around 3:30 in a Saturday afternoon. There is a large outdoor seating space right by the river, which would be lovely during the summer.


The selection of food are your standard dimsum choices, no complaints from the group, but would've like to see something slightly unusual to attract diners coming to Canary Wharf.


Decent local, and a solid choice if you're in the area.


Horrible experience. If we had read the review from Saveen we would have spared us a bad night. The service is unattentive if not rude, the restaurant was out of napkins (on a Staurday eve?), dumplings hard, untasty, rebaked and refried. The chef signature dish, sweet and sour prawn, clearly cooked with the cheapest ingridients. So the other signature dish, chinese broccoli with ginger. We give the lowest rate to service, the lowest to food, the ratio price/quality even lower since the menu is even pretentious. The only possible plus is the location, which is lovely in Canary Wharf - but mind: dining at The Royal China will leave you so unsatisfied and disappointed which we recommend anyone to simply avoid this place.

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