North London's Cultural Guide

Three Uncles: Hawley Wharf’s hottest new opening?

Superior Cantonese lunchboxes with colourful presentation at Camden's new canalside dining destination

Age: Just one week – as fresh as a new-born baby, but with a powerful and extremely popular parent in Shoreditch.

Where exactly is it? On the top floor of Hawley Wharf, the new canalside addition to Camden, which can’t quite decide whether it’s posh shopping mall, streetfood market, or fine dining destination. So it’s something of a mix of all three. Fair enough.

OK. So what goes on there? On a quiet midweek lunchtime, many traders at the brand new food outlets – all of which look promising, it should be added – were thrumming their fingers, eagerly awaiting custom. Meanwhile Three Uncles was positively jumping, with dozens of eager punters queuing, jostling and waving their paper receipts in anticipation of a perfectly cooked Cantonese lunchbox. On closer inspection, we discovered the new opening was offering 50% off this week; yep, we secured ours too. But still, the buzz, and excitement, was tangible.

Three Uncles
The roasted ‘two-meat’ lunchbox (£9.50). Photo: Stephen Emms

What should I eat? If it’s your first visit, then it has to be a box from their signature Roasted section (pictured above), with prices from £8.50. Our mix of two meats – roast duck and crispy pork belly – lay artfully arranged on a generous mound of fluffy rice strewn with al dente pak choi, the addition of chilli pot and a zingy ginger and spring onion sauce (an extra £1) making it as pleasingly colourful as it was tasty. In fact, it was so filling that we swore dinner could only now be a salad. Elsewhere is a trio of options in the Lo Mein Noodles section – brisket and mooli, anyone? – as well as curry fishballs and Char Siu Sou pastries.


The interior: discuss. The attractive window naturally has an Insta-friendly red neon sign, with the roasted meats hanging up at the window of the open kitchen. In front, communal benches are occupied by punters from the diverse range of traders in the hall, a little like the other indoor streetfood destinations that proliferate central and East London.

What’s the service like? It was rather slow, but, as we said, they were rammo with the special offer. But nonetheless, the wait was no more than 15 mins wait, start to finish, with all manner of apologies once food box was thrust in our eager paw. In short, it felt like an ‘occasion’ lunch, rather than a Wednesday sarnie, for which we could only feel grateful.

Do say: ‘Hawley Wharf actually has some foodie potential.’

Don’t say: ‘What with the new Buck Street Market a bao’s lob away, have we reached peak streetfood now in Camden?’

Follow @three.uncles on Instagram for more, open daily at Hawley Wharf NW1.

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The award-winning print and online title Kentishtowner was founded in 2010 and is part of London Belongs To Me, a citywide network of travel guides for locals. For more info on what we write about and why, see our About section.