Get Naming Feedback & Suggestions

One of the most challenging parts of opening a new restaurant is coming up with a good name that helps you place stand out above all your competitors and makes a positive impression on your customers.

If you want to get a second opinion or some feedback on names you’ve been thinking about, please post them in the comments below.

Or if you’re stuck for ideas and want some suggestions, describe as much as you can about your new business, as well as your naming wish list and we’ll share some suitable names for you to consider:

  1. What type of Chinese restaurant is it? A takeaway, fine dining, affordable eat-in, family focused, or any other specific positioning?
  2. How big is your place? How many tables/covers?
  3. Where is it located?
  4. Who are the main customers you’re targeting? Who are the other potential patrons?
  5. Do you serve traditional/authentic Chinese cuisine, or is it a modern Asian fusion?
  6. Do you have any specific specialities – type of food (ie seafood) or origins (ie Peking, Cantonese or Szechuan cuisine)
  7. What are some examples of existing restaurant names that you like? List as many as possible.
  8. What are some of the names you’ve come up with yourself?

Please submit as much information as possible to get meaningful and memorable names.

20 Chinese Restaurants with Popular Naming Formats

Most Chinese restaurants are named using the same few orientally themed words, but there are other options if you want to be slightly different.

Apart from using a ‘The’ at the beginning of the name, there are a number of other popular naming styles used to create the names of many Chinese restaurants. Here are a couple.

Mr or Mister ‘+ the owner or chef’s surname:

  • Mr Chow
  • Mr Chung’s
  • Mr Kong
  • Mr Lau’s Dim Sum Bar & Restaurant
  • Mr Liu
  • Mr Wing
  • Mr Wu

New – for some reason, there are a lot of restaurants that use the word ‘new’:

  • New Aroma
  • New Bowl
  • New Culture Revolution
  • New Diamond
  • New Edinburgh Rendezvous
  • New Fook Lam Moon
  • New Fortune Cookie
  • New Golden Duck
  • New Hong Kong City
  • New Leaf
  • New Loon Fung
  • New Mayflower
  • New World

What’s strange is why there aren’t many names that focus on women, such as Mrs Wang’s, Miss Lam’s or Madam Kee’s.

22 Good Chinese Restaurant Names that are not Very Chinese

A great way to make your new restaurant stand out above all the other Chinese restaurants is to style it’s name differently.

One way of doing this is to stay clear of the traditional names that use the same few words unimaginatively.

Here are 22 names of Chinese restaurants that sound very Western. A few of them have slightly Chinese themes, but there’s no way you’d expect ‘The Dorchester’ to be serving egg fried rice.

  1. The Black Bean
  2. The Chef Restaurant
  3. The Dining Room
  4. The Dorchester
  5. The Drunken Monkey
  6. The Empire
  7. The Golden Empire
  8. The Good Earth
  9. The Great Wall
  10. The Harwood Arms
  11. The Lee On
  12. The New Cultural Revolution
  13. The Orient
  14. The Oriental Bar & Restaurant
  15. The Paddyfield
  16. The Ping On
  17. The Rainbow Arch
  18. The Real Chinese Metro Buffet
  19. The Ritz Club
  20. The Upper House
  21. The Water Margin
  22. The Wolseley

Know any others we can add to this list?

55 Common Chinese Restaurant Names using the Same 6 Chinese Themed Words

Everyone knows that most Chinese restaurants tend to have very similar names. That’s because they use very similar words and merely vary the combinations.

If you’re looking for ideas to come up with a good name for your new restaurant, you should find the following list of names extremely helpful.

Some of you will want a similarly conventional name, in which case you’ll get lots of inspiration. Others may want something more unique, and going through this list will let you know what you should avoid.

As you can see, the top words for Chinese restaurants are China, Dragon, Golden, Noodle, Oriental and Red – but which one is the most popular?

  1. China Blue
  2. China Boulevard
  3. China Bowl
  4. China Buffet
  5. China City
  6. China Delight
  7. China Dream
  8. China Garden
  9. China Grill
  10. China House
  11. China Palace
  12. China Red
  13. China Rendezvous
  14. China Sea
  15. China Tang
  16. China Town
  17. Dragon Castle
  18. Dragon City
  19. Dragon Inn
  20. Dragon King
  21. Dragon Restaurant
  22. Dragon Way
  23. Dragon-i
  24. Dragon’s Nest
  25. Golden Bird
  26. Golden Bridge
  27. Golden Day
  28. Golden Dragon
  29. Golden Gate Dessert House
  30. Golden Harvest
  31. Golden Pagoda
  32. Golden Palace
  33. Golden Place
  34. Golden Ship Inn
  35. Noodle House
  36. Noodle King
  37. Noodle Noodle
  38. Noodle Oodle
  39. Noodle Pan
  40. Noodle Street
  41. Noodle Time
  42. Oriental
  43. Oriental Brasserie
  44. Oriental Chef
  45. Oriental Dragon
  46. Oriental Dragon Cuisine
  47. Oriental House
  48. Oriental Kitchen
  49. Red Box Noodle Bar
  50. Red Dragon
  51. Red Hot
  52. Red Lantern
  53. Red N Hot Szechuan Cuisine
  54. Red Pocket Restaurant
  55. Red Sun Chinese

And the winner is … China!

How to Choose a Good Name for your Chinese Restaurant?

If you’ve been trying to think of a great name for your new restaurant, you already know how difficult it can be, especially if you don’t have a clue about branding and naming.

The good news is that the whole process is a lot easier if you know how to do it, and that there actually is a method to the madness.

So, what’s the best way to create a cool name for your restaurant?

Get Naming Ideas from your Business

The first thing to do is to identify your target market, be clear about your product and the positioning of your business relative to your potential customers and your competitors.

By having a detailed understanding of your business, you’ll be in a much better position to choose an appropriate name for it. You should have a good idea of what’s your unique selling point, what your specialties are, and why customers should come and dine at your place.

Once you’ve got this clear, naming ideas may form naturally already. For instance, if you’re going to be a specialist noodle house offering a range of noodles and noodle dishes, then it may be good to use the word ‘noodle’ as part of your restaurant’s name.

Or, if you’re focusing on a specific type of cuisine from a certain region in China, you could use the name of the town or province as part of your restaurant’s name. For example, if you’re only serving Cantonese cuisine from the Canton region in China, these words could form the base of the name.

In short, whether it’s from the type of food you’re specializing in, where the cuisine is from, or any other aspect of the business, you should look into your restaurant’s core characteristics to get inspiration and ideas for its name.

Create a Name your Customers will Love

Secondly, always have your targeted customer in mind when you’re naming your restaurant. If you want a cool name, bear in mind that it is your customer who needs to think that the name is cool, not you or your friends and family.

A really good name will resonate and connect with its intended audience in order for it to be memorable. This means that ultimately, you want your customer to be able to remember the name of your place when they’re considering choices for a Chinese meal or whenever their friends ask them for recommendations.

Your restaurant’s name should be catchy and easy to remember. It should make a positive impression on people who hear it and make them want to come and find out more about what the business offers. It should sound delicious if possible and make people want to come and try the cuisine offered.

The choice of words used for the name and the naming style you choose will also have a big impact on your restaurant’s name, so think about them carefully. To choose a suitable name, you need to consider all the elements that make up a name and make the right choices for each of them.

Comparison of Old School and Modern Chinese Restaurant Naming Styles

Restaurateurs are increasingly naming their restaurants with cooler and more abstract names that are different from what Chinese restaurants used to be called.

In the past, there was a distinct naming style that the majority of Chinese restaurants adopted. They used similar words, themes, strategies, and ended up sounding alike. These days, the names have become a lot subtler and thought provoking. In short, they’ve become classier and have kept up with the times.

Perhaps this is in line with the growth of fusion Asian restaurants and more upscale establishments that need and want a more sophisticated name. Or, the new generation of Chinese restaurant owners may just be a lot funkier and progressive compared to their Chinese forefathers.

Traditional Chinese Restaurant Names

Here’s a list of some of the more traditionally named Chinese restaurants that you may still find in Chinatowns throughout the world, in China and in Asian countries.

  • Jade Palace
  • Dragon Inn
  • Red Lotus
  • Lucky Garden
  • Green House

Many of the popular words are normally used in varying combinations with different adjectives to produce a range of extremely similar names.

Let’s take the word ‘dragon’ for example, an animal that’s regarded to be lucky, and likely to bring any business prosperity if it is named after it.

Here are some classic Chinese restaurant names that use the word ‘dragon’:

  • Green Dragon
  • Lucky Dragon
  • Dragon Palace
  • Red Dragon
  • Dragon Inn
  • Dragon House

Names of Modern Chinese Restaurants in the West

In comparison, there’s a very different naming style used by new Chinese restaurants, especially those opened in the U.S., UK and Western countries.

This isn’t surprising, as a restaurant’s name ultimately needs to appeal to its prospective customers, and to do so, it needs to be relevant.

For example, in America, a Chinese restaurant could be suitably called ‘Eastern Delights’ or anything using the ‘eastern’ word and concept. However, in China or some other Eastern country, it may not be as effective as the restaurant will already be in the East, together with lots of other Eastern restaurants.

To give you an idea of the types of names that are effective in the West, here are some of the leading Chinese restaurants in the United States:

  • Lost Heaven
  • Chef Chu’s
  • Tropical Chinese
  • Gourmet Dumpling
  • Taiwan Cafe
  • Joe’s Shanghai
  • Han Dynasty
  • Facing East

Old vs New Chinese Restaurant Naming Styles

So, what’s better? If you’re from the younger generation or live in the West, you probably prefer a cleverer name that’s cool. You probably feel that the more traditional names are a bit corny and outdated.

On the other hand, if you’re opening a basic Chinese restaurant that’s affordable, no frills and an everyday eatery, you may not want a fancy name that’s more suited to a fine dining place, and projects an image of being exclusive and expensive.

There are qualities and advantages of both naming styles, and it depends on what you’re trying to achieve and who you’re targeting with your restaurant.

As a middle ground, you could use one of the words used in more traditional Chinese restaurant names and combine it with another word in a creative way to form a great name that’s not too dated or pretentious.

Common Words Used in the Names of Traditional Chinese Restaurants

Most Chinese restaurants used to have very similar names that played around with the same few words.

This may be because the owners were relatively unimaginative, or possibly because they came from the same school of restaurant naming.

Either way, it was easy to spot them from a mile away, and you instantly got a good idea of what the business offered. The focus would be on the food and the chef’s unique offerings. Forget about expecting too much ambiance, friendly service or any attention to plating.

These days, as restaurants are opened by increasingly Western influenced and style conscious Asian entrepreneurs, their names have become more sophisticated.

But if you’re after a more classic name, here are a bunch of words you may want to consider. Even if you’ve opted for a trendy modern name, you could still use some of these words in a creative way to name your restaurant.

Chinese related Culture, Concepts and Objects

The use of a Chinese related theme in the name used to be the classic way to instantly let customers know that you’re a Chinese restaurant.

This naming strategy will always be effective and it’s still widely employed for all types of thematic restaurants today throughout the world.

Here are some of the more popular ones:

  • Jade
  • Dragon
  • Bamboo
  • Panda
  • Orchid
  • China
  • Lotus
  • Wok
  • Prosperity
  • Magic
  • Lucky

(Please help us build the longest list of words used in Chinese restaurant names by sharing ones you know in the comments below.)

Words related to the Type of Food Served

Another good way to brand a restaurant and communicate the cuisine offered is to use a word that describes what’s offered.

This naming style may be used to indicate that you’re known for and specialize in a particular type of food.

  • Noodle
  • Rice
  • Dumpling
  • Dim Sum

Secondary Words Used in Chinese Restaurant Names

Along with the main word that’s normally very related to something Chinese, the accompanying word may be quite generic, or it could follow the same theme.

Here’s a list of the common words used, where you can see that some of them could be used for any type of restaurant, while others are distinctly Chinese.

  • House
  • Garden
  • Palace
  • Bistro
  • Dynasty
  • Inn

Regional Chinese Restaurant Naming

Chinese food varies significantly depending on the region in China where it originates.

As a result, a great way to create an authentic and relevant brand name is to use the name of the place where the cuisine comes from as part of the name of the restaurant.

  • Canton
  • Shanghai
  • Beijing
  • Sichuan
  • Shandong
  • Peking
  • Xian

Hopefully, you’ve now got a better insight into the way Chinese restaurants are named, and the various methods that have been used to create them.

Feel free to share any words or suggestions in the comments below to help us establish a really useful resource for anyone that’s naming a Chinese restaurant.