- Telephone 0131 221 1155
- Food served Mon–Fri noon–2pm, 5.30–10pm; Sat noon–2pm, 5–10pm; Sun 12.30–2.30pm, 5–10pm.
- Average price £15 (lunch); £15 (evening meal)
- Website www.chop-chop.co.uk
This review is taken from the current (2013) edition.
With a plain and pleasant interior that’s more mess hall than Manchuria and a noisy, welcoming buzz about it, Chop Chop has built its popularity and reputation around its homemade dumplings, which are served boiled or fried with assorted, mixed meat, seafood and vegetable fillings. There's also a wider menu worth exploring and a mix-and-match, share-as-it-arrives approach is recommended. A main of mixed seafood has prawns, squid and fishballs flash-fried with garlic and star anise and bangs in the mouth like a fish and fennel flavoured firecracker, while every slurp from a huge bowl of pork broth with sliced belly pork, pickled cabbage and glass noodles is simply superb. While it shares an identical menu with its sister outlet in Leith, this is the original of the two venues. Both locations offer good value unlimited banquet deals and generous membership and reward schemes for regular diners. Difficult though it may be, try to leave some room for the peanut butter dumplings or fried Mongolia: deep-fried dumplings filled with ice-cream.
By now, there can’t be many in Edinburgh unfamiliar with the Chop Chop approach, which eschews typical anglicised Chinese fare for authentic cuisine from the north-east of the country, served up in a variety of portion sizes. For the uninitiated though, that means delicious filled dumplings, either boiled (Jiao Zi) or fried (Guo Tie), a number of unusual but alluring vegetarian selections (like shredded potato salad with garlic, coriander and sesame oil) plus lashings of flavoured noodles. The takeaway service – which includes generous meal-deals and discounts for members – follows the same winning formula as the restaurants. You can order online or by phone and collect from either Haymarket or Leith branches; a delivery service from the latter has stuttered recently so check with the restaurants for confirmation that it's available.
- High point: Just as the menu says: 'uncomplicated, inexpensive and delicious'
- Low point: Not all of the 20-plus dumplings are always available
- Number of wines sold by the glass: 6
- Provides: Vegetarian options (at least ¼ main courses), Children's portions, Children's high chairs
- Music on stereo: Chinese muzak
- Capacity: 80
- Largest group: 80
- Open since: 2006
- House wine: £13.50 per bottle
- BYOB: £5 corkage
Reviews & features
Chop Chop dumplings set for supermarket sales25 Feb 2008
Edinburgh restaurateur Roy King, who runs Chop Chop, has announced that the dumplings for which they are famous are now being produced for sale in Sainsbury's. He insisted on maintaining his policy of 'fresh ingredients only and no pre-cooking…
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