This unusually decorated Chinese restaurant is dimly lit and romantic, with fresh flowers on the tables, curvy modern chairs, and collages on the walls made from unique odds and ends like skewers and drink umbrellas. The dishes are eclectic and interestingly named, such as Ants Climbing a Tree and Firecracker Dumplings. Impressive, flavorful plates of salt and pepper squid, crispy Szechuan duck and flavorful chicken with mango puree will not disappoint. It's in trendy fulham and Chelsea and states on its website that it doesn't use Monosodium Glutemate, blue fin tuna or artificial flavours or food colouring. What's not to like. TUBE: Parsons Green
Recommended for Chinese because: Mao Tai is trendy and prides itself on using fresh healthy food with no monosodium glutamate.
Local Expert tip: Great if you are worried about eating additives, as this place doesn't use them.
This restaurant is known for its crispy roast duck, which is light, flavorful, and not at all fatty. On trip advisor, some clients have even returned to London to eat this duck they missed it so much. The most popular method of presentation is barbecue, with its sensationally crispy skin. The set dinner allows folks to sample delicate spring rolls, sweet corn-and-crab soup, and sweet-and-sour pork. Filet of Dover sole with scrambled eggs is also delicious. They have several branches across London now, and many say it is exactly what a Chinese restaurant in London should be, quick, easy, tasty and reliably basic. TUBE: Bayswater or Queensway and Soho
Recommended for Chinese because: Four Seasons Chinese is reliably good, and will meet your expectations of what Chinese food in London has always been.
Local Expert tip: The crispy roast duck is the favourite of most clients and draws customers coming back again and again.
Kai is another Michelin star Chinese restaurant in London, which has won best Chinese restaurant and many other awards several years running. a top pick for first-class Chinese cuisine in an elegant environment. The Mayfair restaurant, with its muted colors, offers a number of regional cuisines but specializes in Szechwan delicacies. The descriptive menu includes exotic dishes like black pepper ostrich and the popular "Parcels of Prosperity," flaky, deep-fried pastries filled with shrimp. The luxurious room features a giant fish tank, gilt-trimmed walls and thickly upholstered, gold-striped seating. The restaurant puts deserts first on its A La Carte menue, and six shades of peanut and chocolate make you want to race to the end just to get there and dive in. TUBE: Bond Street or Marble Arch
Recommended for Chinese because: Kai Mayfair is an award winning Chinese restaurant in elegant surroundings.
Local Expert tip: Desert comes first on a varied and award winning menu, you can't go wrong with that. Six shades of peanut and chocolate has a winning name and an inviting taste.
While other restaurants focus on milder styles of Chinese cooking, Hunan stands out by offering hot, spicy, authentic Western Chinese cuisine, focused on the food of Taiwan. If you can stand the heat, you'll be delighted by lettuce-wrapped chili chicken or stir-fried lamb with lotus root. Although they're hot, there's substance behind the spice, along with complex flavors. The menu is large, but the chef's special is always sublime, and you're guaranteed a unique dining experience. Their website itself tells you that this is not your typical Chinese restaurant. Plus, the maitre d' goes out of his way to secure your enjoyment. Try crispy frogs legs with bamboo shoots and chili. TUBE: Sloane Square
Recommended for Chinese because: Hunan is not your typical Chinese restaurant, they pride themselves on being different.
Local Expert tip: Hunan is heavily influenced by Taiwanese food and stands out from the usual Cantonese influenced food in London.
Located off Tottenham Court Road, this basement eatery offers a modern approach to classic Cantonese dishes, a philosophy also reflected in the place's upscale decor. Decorative screens, sleek black furniture, and a bevy of fashionable regulars make the sophisticated setting all the more attractive. Of course, creative cuisine gets rave reviews as well, thanks to roasted mango duck with lemon sauce and roasted silver cod with champagne and Chinese honey. The dim sum lunch is extremely popular with business folks. Their sister restaurant, Hakkasan Mayfair got its first Michelin star in 2011, with steamed mini lobster, and black truffle duck present on the menu. TUBE: Tottenham Court Road
Recommended for Chinese because: Hakkasan is Chinese cuisine with a Michelin star, here you can eat black truffle duck in a Chinese setting.
Local Expert tip: If you want upscale food, with a Chinese flavour, this is the place for you.
As you'd expect from its Docklands location, this is a suave, contemporary-to-the-nth degree establishment. As good as the afternoon dim sum is, it's not quite in the exalted league of the dinner menu, which offers such temptations as garlic scallops and ginger squid. Yet this upscale venue knows how to relax: on weekends there's live jazz, and children are made a special fuss of. Definitely worth a visit if you're in the area; in fact, worth going out of your way for. Yi-Ban translates as First Class and that is what this restaurant likes to be. TUBE: Royal Albert Docks
Recommended for Chinese because: Yi Ban translates as First Class, and that is what this restaurant in Docklands is.
Local Expert tip: A long dim sum menu sounds delicious, but aficionados recommend sticking around for the evening meal to really get your fill.
Near to, but not quite in, Chinatown, this much-praised restaurant specializes in food from the northern provinces. It also claims to be the oldest Chinese restaurant in London. There's an emphasis on seafood, which has to be a good thing when it results in the kind of prawn cakes and soft-shell crab you get here. But there's nothing fishy about the most talked about menu item, the Mongolian Lamb. Service is intimate and unhurried, and the wine list is notable for a venue that specializes in food, not booze. The proprietor talks about the balance of yin and yang in a menu, and is happy to help you choose from his varied menu, or just let you have your head. TUBE: Piccadilly Circus
Recommended for Chinese because: Yming is a much talked about restaurant in London's Chinatown district and claims to be the oldest in the capital.
Local Expert tip: The Mongolian lamb is one of the most talked about items on the menu, and soft shell crab is also delicious.
Royal China is one of the best places in London for Dim Sum. You can choose from flavorful dumplings – stuffed with everything from vegetables to minced shrimp, pork, or beef and crab – are delicate and perfectly cooked. The rest of the dishes also impress, from fried seafood favorites to exotic steamed specialties. The vast, subterranean-feeling yet elegant dining room features shiny black and red dinner service with gold accents. Like many places in London, this Chinese restaurant is based largely on Cantonese specialities from the South, but they are executed brilliantly and you won't be disappointed, definitely worth the visit.
Recommended for Chinese because: Royal China is one of the best places in London for Dim Sum. Light food in elegant surroundings.
Local Expert tip: Crab is in the dumplings of the royal soup which makes the soup light and tasty.
The Good Earth group opened their doors 25 years ago, and they now comprise 3 restaurants, 4 fast food outlets, and a food factory. The restaurants offer a range of Chinese food, from the familiar aromatic duck and shredded beef, a staple of most Chinese restaurants in London, to more modern Chinese regional dishes. You can go there in a big group, meet a colleague for business, or have a romantic tete a tete if you so desire. The menu is long and varied, so there is something for everyone, and each restaurant encourages you to try out new specialties. The great thing is that you can even take out or order from their food factory too.
Recommended for Chinese because: The Good Earth has been providing great Chinese food to London for 25 years.
Local Expert tip: If you like what you eat in the restaurant, you can also order the food to take out from one of the series of 'Good Earth Expresses' they have dotted around London too.
Barshu is an elegant building on Frith Street, done up in the gold and red of the Chinese Emperors. The restaurant stretches over several floors, with different types of public dining rooms and 3 private dining rooms too. Sichuan opera masks hang from the ceiling, a statue of the Buddha presides over the main dining room . Hanging lanterns pretify all the rooms and make the gilt and gold glitter alluringly. The food is mainly Sichuan Chinese, so think spicy and good. Fuchsia Dunlop is a consultant for the restaurant, and she's already the author of two great cookbooks on Sichuan cookery, having studied cooking in the country and speaking Mandarin perfectly. She is the leading authority on that region's cooking in London, and has already attracted the restaurant some great reviews.
Recommended for Chinese because: Barshu is a place to go if you like fire and spice, a delicious new place with top consultants.
Local Expert tip: Jay Rayner the esteemed restaurant critic said this restaurant 'breathed fire back into Chinatown', an accolade if ever there was one.