Superb Spicy Sichuan Cuisine In Victoria

Dragon Inn Club ★★★★★

Superb Spicy Sichuan Cuisine In Victoria Dragon Inn Club 5
The use of Sichuan oil with the chicken gives it lovely kick.

As we head away from the bustle of Victoria station we enter a rather innocuous looking Chinese restaurant. The frontage has us fooled, as what awaits us inside is one of the best Chinese meals we've ever had.

We head downstairs — this place is huge, and the decor of Chinese statues, lanterns and tiles in the dim lighting all feels authentic. It's as if we've disappeared into an underground Chinese realm, and we wouldn't be surprised if the menu was in Mandarin, but thankfully for us it isn't.

The restaurant has beautiful authentic interiors.

For starters we kick off with some chicken that has been cooked and then chilled. The idea made us apprehensive, but it amplifies the flavours of the Sichuan oil that it's been marinaded in, the fiery kick from the chillies being an added bonus.  The prawn ravioli is also a delight — calling it ravioli is arguably a little misleading as it's more like a heftier dumpling — but it's petty to complain about the name when it tastes this good.

Our main dish is quite the sight to behold as the soft shelled crab is hidden under a layer of bell chillies. As the chillies come whole it gives us the option of choosing how spicy we want it. We weren't brave enough to bite into the chillies directly, but it's an option.

The superb soft shelled crab under a layer of chillies.

The tofu with beef was our second main, and the texture is spot on. The tofu is firm enough to lift with chopsticks but then proceeds to dissolve in our mouths, exactly how we like it. It's worth noting that there are a lot of spicy dishes on the menu and while they are by no stretch tongue burners, diners who can't take spicy food may not enjoy this restaurant as much as a pair of chilli lovers like us did.

We finish off with the deliciously sweet banana flambe that's prepared at our table with a bit of fire and flair. The caramel and ice cream provides the perfect finish for our sweet toothed diners.

Every dish we have is superb and we can't find a single fault with the food, the decor or the service — we're on to a Sichuan success.

Dragon Inn Club is at 16 Upper Tachbrook Street, nearest underground station is Victoria. The meal for two in this review would cost circa £30-35 a head, excluding drinks.

Last Updated 23 April 2018