Everyone loves a Chinese, so here are the best Chinese restaurants around Poplar, Limehouse, and the Isle of Dogs.
China is famous for its food. Different regions have their own unique flavours and dishes from the fresh seafood of Jiangan cuisine, mutton and thick noodles of Shaanxi, to spicy Sichuan. In the UK we’ve added our own twist with Chow Meins and Stir Frys that can only be found here.
We’re lucky to have so many options to choose from when it comes to Chinese restaurants in the Poplar, Limehouse, and Isle of Dogs.
So whether you’re looking for a comforting typical Chinese takeout, or feeling adventurous and want a taste of authentic China, there is a restaurant here for you.
BEST FOR: SPICY MALA XIANG GUO
Located at the busy intersection where the A13 becomes East India Docks Road in Limehouse, the location may not scream a great dinner out.
However, the food more than makes up for this with the manager Eric having a passion for bringing authentic Chinese food to more people.
New Beijing speciality is Mala Xiang Guo (Spicy stir fry pot). Customers pick from 60 ingredients, they are then stir-fried together with spices. But New Beijing doesn’t limit itself to just this dish. Reflecting the diversity of Chinese people who have made Tower Hamlets their home, New Beijing opts for authentic dishes from across the country.
Choices vary from a massive Da Pan Ji (literally big plate chicken) from China’s far western Muslim province Xinjiang to the humble tomato and eggs. A staple in homes across China.
8 E India Dock Rd, Limehouse, E14 6JJ
BEST FOR: HOT POT
A list of the best Chinese restaurants isn’t a true list without a hot pot restaurant, and we’re lucky to have one of the best in London on our doorstep.
Malinda regularly tops out the London branch of Hai Di Lao, China’s best-known hot pot chain, as the best Hot Pot spot in London amongst lists put together on the Chinese social media site Xiao Hong Shu.
Hot Pot is a staple of China, with different variations for different parts of the country, they all feature a large simmering bowl of broth shared amongst the guests. Raw meat and vegetables are ordered and are cooked at the table by being dipped in the broth. A self-service station lets you mix your own small bowl of sauce to dip your freshly cooked food in.
If you’re looking for comfort food to keep you warm during winter, there is nothing better than hot pot. With the temperature getting colder and the nights getting darker, what are you waiting for?
62 Mellish St, Isle of Dogs, E14 8NS
Wings Chinese Cafe
BEST FOR: TRADITIONAL CHINESE TAKEWAY
What can be said about Wings Chinese Cafe that isn’t already known? A Poplar institution that is part of the fabric of Crisp Street Market, they have got typical Cantonese style British-Chinese food down to an art form.
A hole in the wall with some tables for seating outside, it gets rightfully busy at peak times.
Not only is the food great, they have big portion sizes and the price is unbeatable with many offerings around a fiver.
If you’re craving a Chow Mein or Fried Rice, this is the spot.
19 Market Sq, Crisp Street Market, Poplar, E14 6AQ
BEST FOR: CHINESE SEAFOOD
Han Chinese Restaurant has a little bit of everything. You can choose from Hot Pot, BBQ, Seafood, and more typical stir fry dishes.
A cosy restaurant with a more traditional Chinese theme, the wooden tables come fitted out with a built-in hot plate ready for cooking your hot pot or BBQ. They offer more seafood than other restaurants on this list. In particular large roast fish dishes and spicy crayfish that are hard to find elsewhere.
With so much on offer, it can be hard to pick.
The lamb skewers, a popular street food and BBQ snack across China, come strongly recommended.
213 E India Dock Rd, Poplar, E14 0ED
Sanbubai Chuan Chuan
BEST FOR: TRYING SOMETHING NEW
When a Chinese restaurant doesn’t even bother to have an English name, you know you’ve found something special.
The most unique restaurant on this list, the mural of a baby breathing fire while riding a dragon on one of the walls perhaps does a better job of describing it than any review could.
Chuan is the Chinese word for skewers, and there are lots of them. A wall of different raw vegetables and meats skewered onto long wooden sticks are chosen from, each one as little as 59p. You choose your broth and wait until a giant pot is brought out filled with broth and your freshly cooked skewers.
As the fire-breathing baby suggests, some of the broths are spicy spicy.
With more Chinese than English, it may be for the more adventurous, but if you’re looking for something different this is the one.
Ability Place, 37 Millharbour, Isle of Dogs, E14 9HB
BEST FOR: SPICE LOVERS
An interesting hybrid with Chinese Hotpot and BBQ, whatever you eat here you’ll be making it on your table. But that’s the joy of this style of restaurant.
If you opt for BBQ, you’ll have a grill at your table ready to BBQ as much meat as your stomach can take.
For the hotpot, Super Three specialise in Sichuan style. As you may have realised, spice is key to a lot of Chinese food, and the Sichuan province of China is the home of spice.
Combining spicy chillies with numbing peppercorn, if you’re opting for the spicy Sichuan broth for your hotpot make sure you have lots of water nearby. For those who are a little more spice-averse, there are options like mushroom broth instead. You can even opt for a divided bowl with different broths in each section so everyone can be happy.
With funky industrial-esque decor and the cook-your-own food, Super Three makes for a memorable meal out.
207 E India Dock Rd, Limehouse, E14 0ED
If you enjoyed this article try reading: The Story of the Chinese Association of Tower Hamlets
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