Home Chinese Lotus Floating Chinese Restaurant, Crossharbour

Lotus Floating Chinese Restaurant, Crossharbour

by Krista
Lotus Chinese Floating Restaurant, Crossharbour

Lotus Chinese Floating Restaurant, Crossharbour

Lotus Chinese Floating Restaurant, Crossharbour

9 Oakland Quay
Inner Millwall Dock
London E14 9EA

The Victims: Echo, Bill, Echo’s mom, Tong-Tong (so cute!), Ying, Xiang

The Damage: Unknown. Team China paid for me.

The Background: When I first started this blog, I had this idea that it would help me explore London.

While that was certainly true in the early days, lately I’ve found myself suffering from TFL malaise. If it’s not in EC1 or N1 or WC1 or MAYBE W1, I really don’t want to go.

I think about the old days, when I would happily trot over to Notting Hill or up to Belsize Park. Not so much anymore. I’ve become a homebody.

So it was good that Echo prompted me to get on the DLR one Sunday afternoon (the 4th of July no less) and head out to Lotus Crossharbour for some dimsum. The DLR on a sunny Sunday afternoon is really really lovely. I need water to make me feel sane and plodding along on the driverless train through Canary Wharf and into Crossharbour is certainly a peaceful little journey.

Lotus Chinese Floating Restaurant Menu

This is an old image of the menu for Lotus Chinese Floating Restaurant and it’s a little out of focus. You might find the menu online more helpful.

Lotus menu
I arrive at Lotus Crossharbour and to our table. The restaurant really is floating!! I’m the only native English-speaker in our group today: Echo has brought her mother who is visiting from China and her adorable daughter Tong-Tong. Three generations. Awesome. I let everyone know that I like taro. And parsnip. I’ll pass on the chicken feet, but sign me up for anything with seafood. There is much consultation and then the parade begins. As always with dim sum, I have no idea what I’m eating. But it’s all pretty fantastic. And the light is perfect so every photo I take comes out gorgeous. (Except for that spot that looks like steam in the middle of each photo, but that was because I needed to clean my lens.)

Lotus broccoli
Good Chinese broccoli. But not enough garlic for my liking.

Lotus those dumplings i don't like
These are my least favorite dim-sum. Too stodgy. I actually know what these are called…they’re char sui buns.

Lotus no idea
No idea what these were, but they looked neat, all spherical and such. (Almost like that lamb ball, huh?)

Lotus no idea but delicious
These were fantastic. I gladly would have had more. Anyone want to tell me what they are? I can’t remember what was in them either, except that they were fantastic.

Lotus lotus leaves
I’m also a huge fan of the lotus leaves, packed with rice and God knows what other sorts of delicious substances. These were well done.

Lotus tripe
Tripe. Been there, done that. Way too many times. And unless it’s spicy, it’s just not for me. (But I do give myself points for continuously giving tripe a shot.)

Lotus prawn dumplings
Prawn dumplings. Perfect, really.

Lotus taro
Taro. This is honestly my absolute favorite.

Can’t for the life of me remember what was in these, but they were good. I’m sorry that this is the least informative blog post ever. But aren’t the pictures lovely?

Lotus cake
After the taro, these were my 2nd favorite. No idea what they’re called. I think they’re parsnip cakes? Anybody?

Just like the tripe, with chicken feet, I’ve been there, done that. Not for me.

The Service: The service at Lotus Chinese Floating Restaurant is severe. They really did not want us to order in small batches. Everything had to be ordered at once.

The Atmsophere: Kinda nice sitting there, looking out onto Crossharbour and the water.

The Verdict: I liked Lotus Crossharbour. (Although I totally couldn’t tell we were floating.) I thought all my food was pretty good, but I probably need to eat more dim sum to truly write anything remotely close to informative here. I’m sorry if I’ve disappointed you.

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Lizzie 2010 -

The golden flaky triangles are char siu puffs. The parnsip cakes are actually turnip cake – loh bak goh. Called mooli, or daikon, it’s the same raw shredded white stuff you get with sushi.

I’ve always been very nervous of floating restaurants, but this does look lovely.

Mr Noodles 2010 -

The white spherical buns are probably steamed custard buns (lai wang bao) but I can’t be sure without seeing the filling.

The one below that are cha siu sao, which is bbq pork in puff pastry with the same filling as the cha siu bao.

The croquettes underneath the taro ones are salt-water croquettes (haam sui gok) and are filled with pork. Not as good as taro imho. They’re often described as mixed meat croquettes on dim sum menus.

The ‘parsnip’ cakes are actually mooli or turnip cakes (lor bat go). In fairness, the Chinese word ‘lor bat’ covers a whole load of root veg, so I’ll let you off on this one!

I should stop reading blog at lunchtime. I’m now starving and in need of dim sum!

Su-Lin 2010 -

Hey, it’s the dim sum on a boat place! Never thought I’d see it in a blog post – a lot of us students used to go there back in the day. Don’t know why seeing as most of us were based in the west!

Krista 2010 -

I wish I could comment on the prices. Am guessing they must be low-ish if you went here when you were a student?

Wild Boar 2010 -

Been there a couple of times, thought it was ok but not great. Only really went there coz I have a bunch of friends living nearby who’re too lazy to travel to central.

Think the prices are fairly reasonable.

An American in London 2010 -

I used to work in that office complex (Exchange Harbour). Let me tell you the DLR is NOT fun when that’s your daily commute. I also used to eat lunch pretty regularly at the floating Chinese restaurant. We never ordered dim sum, but what I found funny is that most of the food they served was pretty awful, and over time, I learned to order only (1) dou miao (the sauteed snow pea shoots); and (2) some sort of sizzling beef-and-onion dish. That became a staple.

Anyway, like Su-Lin, I never thought I’d see a blog post on the place. I was super glad to leave the Docklands for Spitalfields, that’s for sure.

Krista 2010 -

We did get some noodles and they weren't very special. But damn if I didn't think the dim sum was pretty good. That being said, I am not an expert!

Kelly 2010 -

The floating lotus is close to where I live. We used to go here when the Jubilee line was constantly shut. The regular dinner options are good too. The spicy shredded beef is nice (not spicy though). Not spectacular food but it’s nice. El Faro by Crossharbour station is supposed to be good.

An American in London 2010 -

Kelly – I *really like* El Faro! I ate there pretty often when I used to work in that area. So give it a try and let me know how it’s doing these days:


Helen 2010 -

I’ve actually been here a couple of times as I used to live about 5 minutes away. I have to say that nothing we had was ever that good. I also really hated the spot lighting (do they still have that?) – it was like they positioned a spot light directly above every seat so that it shined just so in your eyes. Did my head in. I never felt comfortable there.

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