Located in the trendy Mayfair area, Hakkasan is perhaps the best known restaurant of this type in the whole of the UK. Such is the popularity of the restaurant, there are actually two floors and it is capable of hosting over two hundred people at a time. With a top chef overseeing the menu, you are able to order a whole host of dishes but without a doubt you have to try the dim sum dishes on offer.
The restaurant has become very well known for their exceptional dim sum menu, where you can order a platter and take in some amazing tastes including the Chinese chive dumpling, the duck and yam bean dumpling or even the mouth-watering scallop shu mai dumpling. There is also a platter for vegetarian diners which is every bit as good as the full blown exotic morsels they have to offer.
You can use Hakkasan for two types of experience, as on the different floors you are able to either take in a quieter traditional Hakkasan setting surrounded by typically decorative Chinese wooden screens, or on a level higher there is a bar and restaurant area where things are a bit livelier! It will come as no surprise to anyone that dines there that the restaurant has a Michelin star and has done so since 2011 with the quality of the food unchallenged. As wonderful as this restaurant is, do go with a big padded wallet – prices are on the very high side, but totally warranted with the twist in the tail of every dish that only Chef Tong Chee Hwee can provide. If you want to save a little money, try Hakkasan’s little sister, Yauatcha, located in Broadwick Street, W1. Bigger choices of dim sum, less showy but easier on the pocket.
17 Bruton Street
0207 927 7000
Golden Dragon, Chinatown
The Golden Dragon is set in an excellent location and its friendly staff make it a must-go-to eaterie. It is fairly large compared to some of its counterparts, allowing a spacious area to dine in and you are ensured of a very relaxed environment when dining there. The interior is decorated in traditional red and gold colours, giving the diners a very real feel of China.
You cannot go to this restaurant without trying the renowned superior, steamed pork dumplings. The Golden Dragon is perhaps best known for the dim sum dishes and there is a reason for this – they are simply some of the best you will get in London. If you are keen to try something else from their dim sum menu you are sure to enjoy the pork and crab dumplings or perhaps the prawn and chive dumplings. Top of the list to try is the Har Gow filled with succulent prawns.
The waiting staff will always offer their opinions on dishes to suit and this is very helpful for those visiting for the first time. While the menu is not limited to dim sum dishes at all, you cannot go wrong with their selection of those, but do be aware that the dim sum menu is at lunch time rather than the evening.
28-29 Gerrard Street
0207 734 1073
Wan Chai Corner, Chinatown
Set in the bustling area of Chinatown, Wan Chai corner is one of the very best restaurants for dim sum that you will find in London. The well-travelled or experts amongst you may recognise the name as the busy commercial region in Hong Kong, which is where the restaurant gets its name from. The restaurant is often busy, but it is testament to the waiting staff that you do not have too long to wait for a table and that the tables and surrounding areas are always spotless. The staff are polite, quick and efficient which adds to the overall dining experience.
The comprehensive menu allows a lot to choose from across a whole host of fantastic and authentic options, but you have to try the fresh and affordable, popular dim sum selections including Shui Mai and the BBQ Pork Cheung Fun, which are guaranteed to satisfy your palate. Perhaps the most interesting is one dim sum dish that you don’t come across to often, a delicious Baby Octopus Marinated in Thai Chilli, certainly worth a try.
The restaurant also offers a take away service that has proven very popular with the locals in recent times who cannot get enough of the tantalising food on offer!
3 Gerrard Street
0207 434 1188
One of our tips for great dim sum – located out in Docklands, convenient for Canary Wharf and the O2 concert and exhibition centre, you cannot go wrong with this fairly new and stylish venue, where you can dine inside or out on the patio with River Thames views – outside can be a little noisy as the flights for City Airport are taking off and landing at relatively regular intervals – but on a sunny day, you will never notice as you look out over Albert Dock. Y Ban is definitely better on a summers’ day.
The interior of the restaurant is spacious with tables bedecked with pristine white linen. Service is attentive, but not obtrusive. There is a large separate dim sum menu, with great choices, or simply go for the Dim Sum Platter, which includes all the favourite and popular dim sum dishes as well as some exotic and dare we say, ‘strange’ ones! Be brave!
The dim sum here is served daily from noon to 5pm, and costs a relatively economical price between £2.00 and £3.50 a dish. Recommendations are the steamed dishes, in particular the crystal scallop and the snow-pea dumplings, which are deliciously crisp beneath the soft white outer casing. The pork puffs are extremely tasty and pleasing to the eye with glazed and flaky pastry coats. At Yi Ban, you can mix dim sum with other Chinese dishes, if you are feeling particularly hungry. There are also desserts on the list including a tasty coconut mousse and a mango pudding – children will love those!
London Regatta Centre
1010 Dockside Road
E16 2QT London
+44 (0)20 7473 6699
Mon – Sat: 12.00 – 23.00
Sun: 11.00 – 22.30
If you fancy trying to learn how to make your own Dim Sum – Try one of our Dim Sum Classes