We had high expectations about our dim sum lunch at the Royal China at Raffles Hotel (皇朝莱佛士). In fact the word “Royal” conjures up luxurious images in our mind especially when this Chinese restaurant is the Singapore branch of a group that is based in London. The Raffles Hotel location certainly gives it an added prestigious impression. Royal China Singapore is located on level 3 and the entrance has a bit of a regal look as well look as well.
The Royal China at Raffles restaurant has a classy decor that is clearly Chinese themed yet modern. The clever use of a white and blue colour palette and avoidance of the usual red or other bright colours give the interior a soothing feel. At lunch time, dim sum is the main attraction at this restaurant which serves the usual dim sum staples.
Don’t be fooled by the tranquil look in our pictures as we were there early. On a weekend, Royal China at Raffles Hotel was enjoying brisk business but the staff seemed overwhelmed by the influx of diners. It was 0 to 90% capacity in 30 minutes. It was hard to catch the attention of the staff and not many smiles could be seen. It was also a challenge to have any conversation beyond one sentence when everyone seemed to be in a rush.
Here are pages for the dim sum and regular food menu.
The meal started with XO carrot cake ($8.80 per dish) and cheung fun with char siew ($5.80). Both were good dim sum items.
The next items were the xiao long bao ($6.80 per basket) and egg yolk buns ($1.70 per piece). These were quite average in taste.
The final savoury dim sum items were the char siew soh ($1.60 per piece) and yam puffs ($1.90 per piece). These were very good. The char siew soh in particular had very rich, flaky skins. They also looked rather attractive.
Finally, it was time for desserts. We ordered the Avocado Puree and Ice-cream in Young Coconut ($9) and pumpkin puree with coconut ice-cream ($9). These were the best items of the day. They were refreshing and the taste was original.
Overall, dim sum lunch at Royal China at Raffles Hotel was a mixed experience. The food itself was generally fine with some items better than others (as is usually the case). The decor and the dessert items were deserving of a “Royal” label. The service was the weakest link at the restaurant and we clearly received much less than royal treatment.
Overall Rating 3 TOPs
Royal China at Raffles Hotel 皇朝莱佛士
328 North Bridge Road #03-09
Tel: +65 6338 3363
Mon-Sat: 12:00 pm – 3:00 pm; 6:00 pm – 10:30 pm
Sun: 11:00 am – 2:00 pm; 6:00 pm – 10:30 pm
Nearby Stations : City Hall, Bras Basah