Sydney, New South Wales

2018 Restaurants & Catering - Awards for Excellence - Finalist-Best Asian Restaurant-Sydney
It's Mad Men meets Shanghai at China Lane – an exciting new restaurant, tucked away in one of Sydney's inner city nooks. Spot the distinctive birdcage artwork located in the laneway outside before venturing inside where a 1950s-inspired fit out is revealed. The sharing menu features modern Chinese dishes $59 - $92 banquet options.
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Opening Times

General info


2 Angel Place
Sydney CBD NSW 2000


Sydney CBD



Asian, Chinese, Gluten free available, Japanese, Shared Plates, Vegetarian available, Vietnamese

Price Range:

$$$$ ~ $$$$


Fully Licensed (no BYO)

More info


China Lane is located in the heart of Sydney’s CBD, secluded within the beautiful laneway of Angel Place. Within moments from City Recital Hall and walking distance from the State Theatre and Capitol Theatre, China Lane is the perfect venue for pre and post theatre dining. The menu offers traditional Asian flavours with a modern twist, designed to stimulate and excite the palate. The wine and beverage menu have been crafted to compliment the diverse range of flavours and spice throughout the menu. As of Saturday the 10th of October the restaurant will open at 5:30pm on Saturday evenings to accommodate earlier shows. The restaurant is closed on Sundays and Public holidays. Under Head Chef Kristian Vale, the fresh Asian-inspired menu at China Lane is designed for sharing. The wine list is compact and accessible with labels tailored towards wines which are versatile with Asian flavours. The cocktail list is fun and fresh with weekly specials to delight the palate.


The entrance to China Lane sets the scene of the evening. Pop through from George Street and meander down a cobblestone road, past the buzzing Felix and Ash St Cellar, where diners spill out onto the footpath. Are we in Paris? Okay, let's not get ahead of ourselves, perhaps more Melbourne? Take a left into the narrow alleyway that is Angel Place and look to the sky. Metal birdcages of different shapes and sizes dramatically hang from wires, creating a ceiling that's intimate and majestic. Linger awhile and sounds of birds chirping from hidden microphones can be heard from above. Forget Melbourne - are we in an aviary?

Once inside the China Lane doors, the mood is ebullient. The fitout features hints of the garish urban 60s with lime green trimmings and then we take a quick trip across the globe to Shanghai – from a bygone era – with Chinese mahogany cupboards and doors. Head to the bathroom and we're transported to the space age with its uber modern soap containers and tiny cubicles. Who knows what design they are going for but who cares? China Lane is cool.

Are we weary of small plates, those minuscule portions that so often add up to nothing but a persistent, belligerent hunger? Are we tired of formal fine dining, where the atmosphere is a stiff as the white cloth napkins on the table? The food at China Lane isn't glamorous or exotic but it is the type of food that is almost impossible to stop eating. Listen carefully to the well-versed waiters as they point out which dishes can be ordered as half serves. Take guidance from their recommendations as each waiter artfully balances the salty, the sweet and the sour flavours of each diner's meal. This attention to ordering pays and like sister restaurant's China Doll and China Beach, the dishes here are generously-portioned and perfect for sharing.

The liberal use of herbs characterises the best dishes on the menu. A salad of jellyfish, pomelo, prawn and slow roasted pork belly is lavishly overflowing with Vietnamese mint and Thai basil. Chunky morsels of prawn, roasted cashew nut pieces and crunchy shallots complete an impressive dish of san choy bau. It is easy to understand why the salt and pepper prawns are one of the restaurant's most popular dishes – the tapioca flour batter is so light that the focus is less on the deep-friedness and more on the prawns' moist texture and slightly sweet flavour. The pink snapper fillet with ginger, soy and shallot, while simple, is one of the standout dishes. The vegetarian options don't let the team down, either. A simple stir fry of pumpkin, baby corn, tofu and cashew nut is blamelessly good – with the leftover sauce perfect to drizzle over rice.

China Doll has the wharf, China Beach has the beach and China Lane has bird cages. Each of these China-empire representatives offers the same infectious combination of great food, fine wines, exotic cocktails and prime real estate.
Anna Lisle

Specials & Events

This restaurant has not scheduled any event.


180 pax
China Lane is a perfect place for intimate tables or large groups with banquet menus to suit groups. There is a secluded Private Room for up to 10 guests.


Accessible by wheelchair
Bar / Wine Bar
Function for 100-300
Function for 50-100
Late Night Dining
Private Dining Room
Suitable for Corporate functions
Suitable for Functions
Suitable for Groups of 10
Suitable for Pre Theatre
Restaurants & Catering - Awards for Excellence - 2018
Finalist-Best Asian Restaurant-Sydney


Anna Polyviou on 23/09/2014
I love the whole lane way with the bird cages hanging and the food that comes from the kitchen. I'm not a big fan of places with a view. I'm more about places with an atmosphere and something different from the rest
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Dragonfleye - 25/10/2012
Awesome taste sensations. Fabulous service. Cool ambience (love the bird cages suspended in mid air above the lane way). We are vegos - loved all the dishes - tomato rice, mushrooms & tofu (sounds basic but their menu describes it much more exotically), san choi bow... Highly recommend.
REDDOOR - 25/08/2012
Fabulous, went Wednesday and very buzzy, very busy, delicious food, excellent service - loved walking round the corner and hearing the birds and to look up and see all the birdcages outside the restaurant - great concept. Booking to go back with other friends in two weeks - can't wait. Have recommended to many friends....
Kate - 22/07/2012
Love the retro style interior. Great food at a reasonable price. Will be back very soon.
Sue - 20/07/2012
The food and service was amazing.