Sunday, November 13, 2011

Where to get Chinese herbs in London - New Loon Moon rides to the rescue


New Loon Moon Supermarket
9A Gerrard Street
London W1D 5PN
Tel: 020 7734 3887
Nearest Tube station: Leicester Square
When we first came to London, Singapore Airlines (read also how to get cheap Singapore Airline tickets) kindly agreed to our requests to increase our luggage limit to 30kg per person in view of our relocation. Even then, we exceeded our new limits by nearly 30kg. I am often intrigued about what people bring along when relocating to halfway across the world. I had attempted to lug along our 5 cups capacity Toshiba rice cooker and Xbox 360 and a ton of Chinese herbs among other things.

After failing to charm the airline's counter staff to allow a further 30kg luggage allowance increase (one should always endeavour), we decided to leave some thing behind. It was like deciding which child to die. In the end, it was the rice cooker (how we replace is a story left for another day), an elaborate condiment set, a Samsonite hardcase as well as our entire crockery set. No one can seperate me and my Xbox. Under our folks' watchful eyes, there was no way we could have chuck those herbs away. "You'll never get these over there. Also you'll need these to boost your immune system given the weather over there," they cautioned.

Truth to be told, we didn't touch these herbs a single bit. Well, we did break a packet of red dates and longan for some soothing drink but nothing else. We even left the rest, which include gou qi zidang shen, bai cao, overpriced dried scallops and mushrooms, not to mention the rest with names I couldn't even recall, untouched. There are still in their original packaging after all these years.

Our folks weren't exactly wrong either. These Chinese herbs and provisions were nowhere to be found in the Chinese grocery stores at Chinatown. Either that or we were simply not looking hard enough. Then New Loon Moon Supermarket came along and set up shop opposite Loon Fung Supermarket on Gerrard Street. Initially, it didn't boost a large variety but a first floor was added after a major revamp and an entire section was dedicated to Chinese herbs on that floor. I took a cursory glance at the prices and found them rather reasonable.

Not that I use them anyway but it's good to know that there's absolutely no need for you to lug those vacuum packed Chinese herbs through the customs at Heathrow. London's Chinatown has them. Not only that, it might be cheaper too.

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