My number one all-time favourite takeaway is Chinese food.
I know I go on about pizza and burgers (and just food in general…) a lot, but Chinese really is my special bae. It’s the takeaway I order every year on my birthday, and the special treat for days when life has been knocking me down.
But guys… It’s been ruined for me. I AM RUINED FOR CHINESE FOOD.
Because now I know what it’s supposed to taste like.
Forget the shredded duck, sweaty pancakes and greasy noodles of your local takeaway… Min Jiang is on a whole other level.
(And I mean that quite literally. Have you SEEN this view??)
Step into the lift of the Royal Garden Hotel in Kensington, press the button to the 10th floor, and get ready to feel your jaw drop.
Nestled right in the heart of Kensington, the first thing you notice as you step into the restaurant is the spectacular sight of Kensington Gardens laid out before you.
Head over in time for the golden hour (an hour before sunset), like we did, and the whole thing is even more magical…
If I had to give the interiors of Min Jiang a label, it would be Understated Luxury.
The dark walls, white tablecloths and low lighting are subtle. The touches of Chinoiserie are quirky and add character. And overall, it manages to whisper: I’M SO FANCY, without being at all intimidating. (Which I always appreciate!)
The lovely waiters poured glasses of chilled champagne, and we made a start on our starters: the Min Jiang dim sum sharing platter.
Our selection included steamed Har Kow (shrimp dumplings); crab meat dumplings; green vegetable dumplings; and pumpkin dumplings stuffed with mixed seafood.
Perfectly steamed, stuffed to the brim with gorgeous flavours… I couldn’t fault it.
Next came the dish which Min Jiang is (rightly) famous for: the Legendary Wood-fired Beijing Duck (that’s actually what they’ve called it on the menu!)
You actually have to pre-order the duck at least 24 hours before your table booking, which means you know it’s going to be freshly cooked and delicious. There’s also zero wastage, as the chef uses every little bit of duck meat available, served over a series of different dishes.
Our lovely (and patient!) Chef de Partie worked his knife magic, and we sat down to our first taste: crispy duck skin dipped in sugar. It sounds bizarre but is actually so good! The fatty skin dissolves on your tongue and you’re left with this burst of salty, sugary flavour that’s utterly incredible.
Now, I really, REALLY like duck pancakes. Like, a lot.
And let me tell you now: the Min Jiang duck pancakes are officially the BEST duck pancakes I’ve ever tried.
Perfectly tender roast duck, topped with cucumber slices, drizzled with plum sauce and wrapped in wafer-thin steamed pancakes…
Expensive? Hell YES.
Worth it? Definitely.
Meanwhile, the rest of our duck was being expertly chopped up and pulled apart in the kitchen.
The leftovers re-appeared in one of our next main dishes: stir-fried noodles with duck. Crispy noodles in yummy savoury sauce, tossed with chunks of duck meat.
We also had beef with black pepper sauce, which was juicy, perfectly cooked and FULL of flavour.
The Gong Bao prawns were fantastic: plump and juicy, with just the right amount of chilli and spice to them.
And last, but DEFINITELY not least, the sliced pork belly with beancurd and steamed buns. The sauce on the pork was thick and rich, the buns were light and fluffy, and the beancurd added crunch and texture.
Overall: mind-blowingly good food.
Yes, Min Jiang is expensive. But oh man. This is one place where I do actually think it’s worth splashing the cash!
Even if you can’t afford dinner, I think everyone should visit the Min Jiang bar at least once, if only for the views and the cocktails.
My delicious Oriental Fizz (vanilla vodka, lychee juice and champagne) was £12.50, but a lot of the less sparkly cocktails were just £10, so it’s not even that expensive (by London standards obviously!). Great for a fancy date night.
And if you’re looking for somewhere special to have dinner, whether it’s a birthday, an anniversary or something else, definitely, DEFINITELY look into booking a table at Min Jiang.
You honestly won’t regret it!
*I was a guest of Min Jiang for this visit.
All opinions, photos, words and pancake loving are my own!