Yipin’s menu covers a lot of the map of China, but you should concentrate on the Hunan and Sichuan sections – that’s where the chefs are from. This is upscale Chinese in an upscale area and therefore not cheap, but big portions mean you don’t have to max out your plastic to get well fed. Many dishes contain massive quantities of chilli, fresh and dried. You can eat them all or just swallow a mouthful of napalm - it comes to the same thing. Order spiced fungus (a kind of wild mushroom), numbing and hot beef, and stir-fried pig knuckle.
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Kipferl is an Austrian cafe in Islington that’s perfect for a weekday lunch or quick coffee run. And when you can’t pronounce the dishes, just point.
Oldroyd is a mix of French, Italian, and Spanish, and the best restaurant in Islington. It’s also very small, so plan accordingly.
Radici is a big restaurant serving Italian classics, and while it might not be the most exciting spot in Islington, it’s one of the most useful.
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Shikumen is a smart Chinese restaurant in Shepherds Bush with fantastic dim sum and a brilliant roast duck that you’ll dream of.
Wuli Wuli is a no frills cash-only Chinese restaurant in Camberwell serving excellent value Sichuan cuisine and a bowl of chicken you’ll dream about.
Kym’s is a lively and modern Chinese restaurant on Bloomberg Arcade in the City, specialising in small plates and meats.
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