Royal Tea House

Royal Teahouse was one of the first dim sum spots in Markham that I ever visited and I still remember their adorable hedgehog buns. I went to high school in Mississauga and and never ventured into the York region until university, where I met a group of friends all from Markham. During summer breaks, I made the drive east every few weeks and I’d get a taste of what the suburb had to offer. Today, Stephen and I are in Markham often to see his parents or to eat. We re-visited Royal Teahouse recently in search of fluffy hedgehog buns.

Atmosphere: We arrived at the restaurant around 10am on a Saturday and the dining room was mostly full. Small and large round tables were full with families enjoying the weekend tradition of morning dim sum. Royal Teahouse is on the smaller side and we were worried about having to wait, but my in-laws were able to grab a table for us when they arrived. The decor is a on the more elegant side and up to date compared to similar spots in the neighbourhood.

Service: Orders at Royal Teahouse were placed using ordering sheets, the restaurant was not push cart style. I found the English translation of the dish names to be a bit confusing and Stephen and I would have struggled on our own without his parents. There also seemed to be a mix up in the kitchen as steamers kept arriving before we had even handed in our sheet. Fortunately, the mix up didn’t impact any of the dishes we did order and the servers were quick to handle each error.

Food: Between the four of us, we ordered 9 or 10 dishes. While the shrimp dumplings were plump, I found the skins a bit doughy and they stuck to the parchment paper. The bowl of congee was a good portion and I liked the consistency.

My favourite dishes were the rice rolls and chicken feet. A generous bowl of sauce was served with the rice rolls along with two dipping sauces. The wrapper was thin, had a great texture and the dough fritters inside were still crispy and airy. I really enjoyed the flavour of the chicken feet and the skin fell off of the bones. A few other dishes we tried were the turnip cake, not bad but underseasoned, short ribs, savoury and tender, steamed tripe, tender but again very underseasoned.

Our meal ended with leaky sand buns that were perfect. Overall, the food was ok. Some of the plates were good, others mediocre, but nothing stood out. Hedgehog buns were no longer available. Royal Teahouse offers special pricing on weekends from 9am-11am where all plates are priced at a small size when paying with cash.

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Royal Tea House Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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