Haozhan may no longer be at the cutting edge of Chinatown eating, but it continues to offer novel tastes, without a red lantern or dragon motif to be seen – instead, black walls, geometric mirrors and emerald-green lighting set a thoroughly modern tone. The extensive menu features twists on favourites such as aromatic crispy duck pancakes – although more adventurous diners are rewarded with ‘unusual selections’ including palate-jangling Szechuan soup, chilli quail, jasmine tea-smoked pork ribs or stir-fried chicken with lemongrass, lime and mint. Haozhan also majors on daytime dim sum (12N-5pm), offering everything from steamed king prawn dumplings and squishy roast pork buns to slippery cheung fun and gnarly chicken’s feet. House wine starts at £15.60; otherwise, a pot of ‘blossoming’ floral tea makes a soothing alternative. ‘Charming’ staff and ‘incredible value’ mean this Chinatown fixture comes ‘strongly recommended’ by readers.
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