16 July 2011

Central London - Fitzrovia - 三峡人家 (SanXia RenJia)

I have a weird obsession with Chinese food. I'm not sure where or why it started but I have some form of pork, noodles and/or rice at least twice a week.  Because, I love it so much, I'm very particular on how it's taste. Some people love the Chinese food in London's Chinatown, but I always feel like I'm eating something cooked in dirty bath water! I tend to prefer the shops that are a bit outside of Central, but I have been surprised before.

My office is on Tottenham Court Road, in the heart of tourist trap London so we have our fill of fast food and chain restaurants in the area. If you head a bit North, to Fitzrovia, Goodge Street pours over with smaller establishments and a variety of flavours.  As Chinatown is quite close to my office, I wasn't too keen on trying any of the places nearby - assuming they would taste like Chinatown restaurangs. One day I finally made the leap!

There are two Chinese restaurants on Goodge Street: one that has a buffet and where everything is written in Chinese characters. I went for the one that was written, 三峡人家 (San Xia Ren Jia). My little bit of Mandarin told me that said, '3', 'something about a mountain', 'a person' and I didn't know the last character. (Google translate says '3 gorges? wtf!?)

Inside, it tends to be a relaxed atmosphere.  There are large, circular tables, great for sharing dishes when you're in a big group. The rest of the building is an open plan, so it's not a very intimate setting for those looking for a quiet date.  The menu is about a million pages long.  I've read it a few times and I still dont see my standard Pork Chow Mein on the list. No worries, I ordered it anyhow and it was still prepared.

As I was on my lunch break, I was in a bit of a rush (I don't have actual lunch breaks, I work straight through them most of the time).  It took about 10 minutes, but that was an acceptable wait.  The food tasted exactly how I wanted so it passes my Can You Make Pork Dishes? test. My only problem was that for £5.50 it was a fairly small serving. I get a delivery from Crouch End that can feed me for three days on £5.50!

San Xia Ren Jia does offer student discounts and special menus during lunch, so perhaps it finds its value in portions with those special offers.  It is also a Karaoke Bar and from it's menu, it proclaims to have bubble tea! We all know how much I love bubble tea. :) They weren't offering it when I went there so I'm not sure if that's still true. Their style of cooking is self-described as 'Authentic Szechuan, Cantonese & Hunan Cuisine'.

As there is a lack of Chinese restaurants that I like in Central, I have and will continue to go there. I just hope I can get some bubble tea soon, and maybe about 33% more food in my takeaway box!

SanXia RenJia can be found at:

29 Goodge Street
Nearest Tube: Goodge Street


Sanxia Renjia on Urbanspoon

1 comment:

  1. Three gorges is the area in Hubei Province with that enormous damn, near Yichang. The google translation was good.

    Source: lived in Hubei and my wife's family originally come from around that area.


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