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Royal China

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ost Londoners will head to a Chinese restaurant for two main reasons: one of them involves heaving plates of roast duck and stir-fried noodles, and the other usually involves cocktails and getting tarted up. It’s not often that you find a place that mixes the simplicity of the first with the upscale cooking of the second, but when we’re seeking that out, we go to Royal China.

Of the six London locations, the flagship restaurant on Baker Street is the one to visit. It’s huge, so tables are easier to come by, which also means you’ll be able to get your fix sooner. It’s also really busy, which makes Royal China’s brilliant for people-watching. The standard dishes you’d expect at any Cantonese restaurant are impeccable, and you may find daily specials alongside the regulars, including a crabmeat dumpling soup worth murdering your dining companions for.

It’s one of the best places to eat dim sum in town and for upscale takes on classic Chinese dishes, it’s easily one of the most consistent places in town. And unlike a Yauatcha or Hakkasan, you won’t have to fight your way through crowds of white wine girls on your way out.

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