Advantages good food
Disadvantages no non-smoking area, lack of intimate atmosphere
Liverpool’s Tai Pan Chinese restaurant is situated in an unprepossessing location a couple of miles north of the city centre. It’s in a vast warehouse of a building, with the restaurant on the first floor, and the W.H.Lung Chinese supermarket underneath. Don’t be put off. This is a very good restaurant. Just look at the clientele on any Sunday lunchtime: 95% Chinese. And it’s listed in the Good Food Guide. It serves authentic Cantonese food. Most of the staff are from Hong Kong.With a seating capacity of 400, you might expect that it would be pretty soulless. Although this probably isn’t the place for that intimate tete a tete, it’s surprisingly relaxed for such a large venue. Some effort has been made with the décor, which is archetypically Chinese, with huge red double-happiness ideographs on the walls. And there’s the Feng Shui water feature on the entrance stairs.
The most exciting time to go is Sunday lunchtime for Dim Sum served Hong Kong style.
Instead of ordering from the menu (in English and Chinese), on Sunday lunchtimes you sit at your table and a continual series of trolleys are brought round, each carrying a different dim sum. It’s up to you to choose which you want. There’s a good variety, including many vegetarian dishes. This is an interesting way of sampling things you may not have tried before, at limited risk to your bank balance. It’s also quite exciting for children, and a way of introducing them to different dishes. My 4-year old grandson loved it.
Prices: This is not an expensive restaurant. The average cost per dim sum is £2-£3.50p. If you go during the week for a “normal” style meal, the average cost is likely to be roughly in the region of £10 per person. There are special deals for business persons’ lunches. And there’s a reasonable wine list.Service: staff are friendly and efficient, rather than overly-attentive. They’re child-friendly.
About the only down-side to this restaurant is that there isn’t a no-smoking area. There is disabled access both to the restaurant and the toilets. And there’s secure parking for 200 cars within the compound, which is patrolled.Fact File:
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