I've heard nothing but praise for Leong's Legend and it's Taiwanese Dim Sum so I was looking forward to trying it out. But in the end I was less than impressed with my dining experience.
First off there is the weird decor which was inspired by the restaurants name sakes Leong's Legends - a group of 12th century Robin hood type outlaws who stole from the rich to give to the poor. Unfortunately the result is more tacky Kung Fu movie set, than ancient outlaw drinking den.
On approach to the restaurant you are greeted buy a mock bamboo sun-shade over the front window. Followed by a dark and wooden interior with booths separated by wooden partitions bound together with twine. Strange bamboo lamp shades hang low over big wooden tables which are accompanied by uncomfortable wooden stools and benches. The look is completed by a mock tiger skin hanging on the wall, and a bizarre banister made of fake weaponry. This whole place just looks weird and feels awkward.
The staff all dressed in Chinese style tunics don't make the place feel any more welcoming, in fact I found them unfriendly and most of all unhelpful. The small specials menu on the table was just a list of dishes with Chinese names and and most of them didn't have an adequate description. When I asked my waitress what some of the dishes were, she replied "I don't know". So, I randomly picked two from the menu.
The first to arrive was a basket of Classic sui loung bau. I don't know what sui loung bau are or why they're such a classic but they looked good and smelt and tasted quite nice too. I still have no idea what was in them but my best guess is pork.
The second dish I ordered was called a Casket. It was described as 'minced chicken and mixed veg in crispy bread shaped box'. I was intrigued.
What arrived was literally a box made of white bread that had been deep fried and filled with a very think and gloopy chicken soup type filling. It looked and tasted like that really thick Campbell's soup out of a can. I felt sick after eating it.
I wasn't impressed and I won't be going back.
But at least I crossed Taiwan off the list.
Address: 82 Queensway, Bayswater, London, W2 3RL
Telephone: (020) 7221 2280 Tube: Queensway (Central Line), Bayswater (Circle line & District line)
Bus: Lots of buses stop here, check the TFL web site for a full list Car: Metered parking on nearby streets and pay and display in Whitley's car park