Saturday, 13 July 2019

The Ledbury

World-class


raspberry millefeuille, olive oil ice cream

I have almost lost count on how many times I have been to The Ledbury, The 2 Michelin starred restaurant is simply the best fine dining restaurant in London for me. It has everything you want from a top restaurant. Great service, relaxing decor with stunning food from the kitchen. Chef-owner Brett Graham has been maintaining the restaurant level at such a high standard for many years now, it has held 2 Michelin stars for 9 years and without a doubt, it will keep its 2 stars for the 2010 guide. For lunch, it offers a no choice 4-course set menu, as well as an a la carte and tasting menu. The beauty about The Ledbury is that the cost of the menu covers the service charge so actually, it is one of the cheapest 2 Michelin star restaurants in London.

Duck and Rice

Chinese weekend brunch


Sha Cha lobster clay pot

This is my fifth visit to Duck and Rice, the Chinese pub in Soho is one of my personal flavourite place for a comforting Chinese meal experience. Chinese food and beer is such a beautiful match and I am wondering why not more places offer such a combination. In the weekend, Duck and Rice offer a brunch menu, with a wide selection of dim sum and some classic Cantonese and street food items. The benefit of being a pub, it also has a great range of beers, cocktails, wines, as well as Chinese teas, which make Duck and Rice one of the most unique pub and restaurants in London.

Duddell's London

Cantonese feasting


Peking duck

Haven eaten at Duddell's five times, I have slowly managing to eat through the whole menu. The Cantonese fine dining restaurant has a slick interior design inside a former church, and it's contemporary Chinese cooking are some of the finest you can find in London. For my sixth visit, head chef Chris Tan has provided a special menu for my table, offering some classic Cantonese dishes with a touch of his personal adaptation, based on a recent trip to Hong Kong. Classic Cantonese cooking, but done in a refined manner, is not easy to find in London so I was really excited about what chef Chris has got in store.

Wednesday, 3 July 2019

Arros QD

Spanish garment rice in London


Smoke ‘dashi’ eel, katsuobushi, white sesame seeds, black garlic aioli
& Wood pigeon breast, wild mushrooms, rosemary, porcini aioli


Spanish cuisine is easily my flavourite European cuisine, fresh taste, great ingredients, and simplicity: are everything that top Spanish food is all about. When top Spanish chef, Quique Dacosta decided to launch a paella focus restaurant in London, I was buzzing with joy. Quique is regarded as one of the modern great Spanish chefs, with his restaurant near Valencia has 3 Michelin stars. At the same time, it is never easy for a Spanish chef to get it right in the UK. Ametsa and Street XO are two perfect examples, opened by other famous Spanish chefs but failed to win over the locals. Would Arros QD suffer similar faith? The hero items on the menu are its traditional Spanish rice, cooked over a wood fire. 

Mere

Contemporary French dining at Fitzrovia


Cornish Cod, Pan Roasted, Artichoke, Confit Fennel, Olives, Dulse Aioli Sauce

Mere, the fine dining restaurant by wife and husband team Monica Galetti and David Galetti, has been recently voted to be one of the top UK restaurants by the National Restaurant Awards. Monica was the sous chef at double Michelin starred Le Gavroche and one of the judges in the popular TV show Masterchef Professional. Mere is located in Fitzrovia, a place that is already packed with excellent high-end restaurants such as Kitchen Table and Pied a Terre. Mere positioned itself as a modern restaurant of mixing French cooking with South Pacific essences. It offers a short a la carte menu with less than 20 dishes to pick from, along with a 6-course tasting menu.

Caractère

Italian and French flair in Notting Hill



Seared mackerel, roasted gem, beetroot, parsley

Operated by the husband and wife team Emily Roux and Diego Ferrari, Caractere is a new restaurant that champions modern European cuisine, in the mood of French and Italian influences. Diego was the head chef at the legendary 2 Michelin starred Le Gavroche and Emily is the daughter of the chef-owner Michel Roux. So clearly they know a thing or 2 in how to run top restaurants. The restaurant has gathered some very positive media reviews since launching back in 2018, with a menu that has about 16 dishes on offer per day, using prime British ingredients from across the UK, such as Cornish fish and Lake District lamb.

Tuesday, 2 July 2019

Moncks of Dover Street

Mayfair brasserie


Raw loin of tuna, watercress puree, black sesame

Moncks of Dover Street, a brand new brasserie launched by the same team behind Park Chinois, is an all-day French dining affair. Menu-wise, it has nothing related to Park Chinois at all, for all-day dining, it has a selection of classic brasserie items, such as steak and bourguignon. On top of that, it has some international dishes such as truffle mac & cheese and roasted leg of lamb with spiced couscous. Without a doubt, the price is Mayfair level, with a main of sloe costing almost £40 a plate. The deco is wonderful, it has a classic luxury feel to it, without being over the top, with a blend of light blue and wood colours in the mixed. 

Jidori

Yakitori in Covent Garden


Tsukune: Minced chicken and egg yolk


When you think of Japanese food, you most likely will think of sushi and ramen right away, but there are so much more than that. Yakitori is a type of Japanese grilled style of cooking, using a range of sauces such as soy sauce and teriyaki sauce for marinating meats or vegetables. Yakitori is a popular choice to pair with beer and sake back in Japan. Located in Covent Garden, Jidori is a Yakitori specialist by Brett Redman, who is also the founder of the brilliant British restaurant Elliot. The menu has a selection of Japanese small eats, ranging from raw seafood to comfort food such as fried chicken, or with an injection of an Asian twist. The main event is the yakitori skewers, with a heavy focus in the chicken.

Monday, 1 July 2019

Imperial Treasure Fine Chinese Cuisine London

£100 duck meal


Signature Peking Duck


When Imperial Treasure was first launched in late 2018, it was one of the most anticipated openings in London, as the restaurant group itself is a big deal back in the Far East, with over 20 fine dining restaurants, and some has gathered Michelin stars status. The London site has since gathered mixed reviews from the UK media, some label it as overpriced and soulless, while some has rated it as one of the best Chinese restaurants in London. I have eaten at Imperial Treasure already once and was not overly impressed with the cooking, 6 months later, with an updated menu and time to settle down, I was hoping for improvement.

China Tang London

Comfort Chinese food at its best



Pumpkin rice

Located inside the luxury 5 stars Dorchester Hotel in Mayfair, China Tang is a classic Chinese restaurant, headed up by the talented head chef Fong. If you are looking for stunning presentations or creative concepts in Chinese cuisine, this is not the place to you. China Tang is all about good old fashioned Cantonese food, with a few regional classics along the way, such as Peaking duck and braised tofu. I have been to China Tang more than 7 times now and slowly managed to try most of its dishes from its a la carte menu. However, chef Fong provides seasonal special every once a while so I got the chance to try some exciting new dishes for my 8th visit.

Saturday, 22 June 2019

Park Chinois

Traditional Chinese banquet in style


Eight treasures duck


Chinese banquet is all about feasting, when family or old friends getting together to have a long-lasting dinner, usually with at least 10 courses of dishes to ensure a memorable evening. I have yet to have a proper Chinese banquet experience in the UK, as it usually contains difficult dishes from a technique's point of view and required long hours of preparation. However, if one UK Chinese restaurant can pull it off, it has to be Park Chinois. The luxury fine dining Chinese restaurant has fast become my personal favorite of mine, thanks to its uses of top-grade ingredients with a team of top chefs. For my sixth time at Park Chinois, I opted for a banquet style menu, prepared specially by the kitchen. 

Saturday, 15 June 2019

The Ledbury

Still the champ



Lobster, shitake, asparagus

For the regular readers of my blog, I am sure you are aware The Ledbury is my no1 restaurant in London for a fine dining occasion. There is just something special about this place that no other restaurants can match in London. The service is world class for a start, as is the quality of the cooking, which has a perfect balance of creativity, elegance, and taste. Chef-owner Brett Graham has maintained the high standard for over 10 years now and is rare to see a restaurant to be at the top of the game for so many years. For my 12th visit, I opted for the tasting menu, as usual, knowing that I will be in for something really special.

Friday, 14 June 2019

212

Umami whirlpool in Amsterdam


Apple, ginger, walnut, salted caramel


Restaurant 212 is perhaps one of the trendiest restaurants in Amsterdam right now. Launched in 2018 by chef duo Richard van Oostenbrugge and Thomas Groot who was the dream team behind the then double Michelin starred Bord'Eau. 212 has no formal sitting in the restaurant, instead, it has an open kitchen, surrounded by a bar counter sitting space. The theme is similar in the mood of Kitchen Table and Atelier Joel Robuchon in London. 1 year later, the restaurant has become one of the hottest restaurants in Amsterdam and landed itself a Michelin star along the way. 212 has a tasting menu, as well as a short a la carte menu for those people who wish for only a few dishes with limited time.

Sunday, 9 June 2019

Alyn Williams at the Westbury

Top notch modern European fine dining


Devonshire duck


To keep heading back to the same restaurant, I would say the restaurant has to be great value for money, and service has to be top notch too, especially for fine dining level. I only have such loyalty for a few restaurants in London, and Alyn Williams at the Westbury is one of them. The Michelin starred fine dining restaurant is slowly becoming a favorite of mine, I really enjoy the modern, light and fresh approach in its modern Europen/ French take on fine dining. Below are some of the highlights from my sixth and seventh visits.

Saturday, 1 June 2019

Lyle's

Modern seasonal British flair


Brill, swiss chard, gooseberry


I have been to Lyle's when it was very launched back in 2015. I got to say, the experience was rather underwhelming, while the food was pretty decent, it was really nothing special. I was really puzzling while it gained so much positive media attention, as well as landing a Michelin star and entered into the World's 50 Best restaurant list, ahead of venues such as The Ledbury and Midsummer House. 4 years later to 2019, I have returned for a lunch occasion, and wonder how much it has changed. Surely, with all of the high praises from both consumers and trade professionals, they are doing something right.

Duddells' London

Smart modern Chinese dining joint in London Bridge


 
Abalone rice with shimeji mushroom and asparagus

Located in the busy district of London Bridge, just a few yards from the station, Duddells is one of the many Chinese restaurants in London, but one that has a well-regarded reputation. Whenever you search online to look for top-class Chinese restaurant in London, the chance is that Duddell's would be one of the first to be recommended. The cuisine is based on Cantonese style, with a few modern and western element in the mixed, all using premium ingredients. This is my fifth visit to the restaurant, as I kept heading back, slowly working my way to try out all the dishes from its menu. For this time, I picked a few dim sum as starters, followed by a selection of dishes from its a la carte menu to sharing with the table.

Casa do Frango

Regional Portuguese cuisine in London Bridge


Half chicken with lemon and garlic

Apart from a few vegan friends, I have yet to find someone who is not a fan of Nando's. The chicken chain is decent value for money and has done a great job in making piri piri chicken such an iconic dish in the UK. You might wonder, what would be the upgrade of Nando's infamous piri piri chicken, and I have found the answer in Casa do Frango, an Algarvian casual restaurant in London Bridge, serving regional Portuguese food. The menu is simple, you have the house special chicken cooked on an open fire, as well as a range of sharing dishes, tapas style. Portuguese cuisine is such a beautiful but underrated cuisine in the UK and I was excited to see what Casa do Frango is capable of.

Sunday, 26 May 2019

Il Convivio Troiani

Playful fine dining in Rome


Octopus with apples and raspberries

There are plenty of fine dining restaurants around Rome, so it was difficult for me to pick one for dinner out of the pool. After some researches online, Il Convivio Troiani was the one that really caught my attention. The restaurant is located inside the city center, on the edge of River Tiber. Il Convivio Troiani by 3 brothers was launched back in 1988 so you might think such an old restaurant means the food is traditional and old fashioned, however, the contrast could not be greater. The restaurant is known for its playful, edgy fine dining and has earned a Michelin star. For my visit, I opted for the tasting menu to fully experience what the restaurant is capable of.

Acquolina

Seafood specialist in Rome


Amberjack, lamb, asparagus

I am a seafood addict, so when I have discovered there is a fine dining restaurant specializing in seafood when I was planning my trip to Rome, it was high on my to visit list. Acquolina is a 1 Michelin star, fine dining restaurant that headed up by a chef with big reputation, in the name of Angelo Troiani, who is also the chef-owner of another highly well regarded 1 Michelin starred restaurant Il Convivio, which is not too far from Acquolina. The setting of Acquolina is very contemporary, with plenty of space between each table, with artwork in the theme of sea creatures. What got me really interested in the menu is that the kitchen seems to enjoy mixing seafood and meat together, which is both ambitious and daring.

Enoteca La Torre

Roman fine dining in an elegant setting 


Red tuna, estragon, sour cream and fermented roots


Out of all the 1 Michelin star restaurants in Rome, Enoteca La Torre is perhaps the one with the most elegant, beautiful and romantic dining room. Located in the Northern part of the capital, Enoteca La Torre is what glamour fine dining is all about, headed up by chef Domenico Stile, the food offering is contemporary, sophisticated with stunning presentation.  To finish off my Rome trip with a bang, I opted for the tasting menu "A journey with eyes closed", which is a 7-course menu selected by the chef, mostly taken from its a la carte menu. I always feel tasting menu usually is better value for money than a la carte anyway, as you get to try more dishes at a cost of 10- 20 more euro.

Armando al Pantheon

Classic Roman cuisine


Spaghetti, alla grioia


Armando al Pantheon is perhaps really high on the to visit list for many people when they travel to Rome, highly recommended on many leading travel sites, from Time Out to Eater. The restaurant is renown for its traditional Roman cuisine, in a simple, casual setting. Located next to the Rome landmark Pantheon, the menu format is your classic Italian 4 course affair, starting from a selection of starters, to pasta and mains, before finishing with dessert. Most dish cost around 10 - 20 Euro mark, along with a strong wine list that almost entirely based on Italian wines.

Friday, 24 May 2019

La Bottega del Buon Caffè

Top quality refined Tuscan cuisine in Florence


Risotto creamed with 36 months aged parmesan cheese, fennels cream, burnt leek, radishes


Located not far from the Florence city center, overlooking river Arno, is the Michelin starred La Bottega del Buon Caffè, many rated as one of the very best restaurants Florence has to offer. The stylish restaurant has its own farm in Tuscany, supplying fresh herbs, vegetables, and fruit to its kitchen. The restaurant cooking concept is local Tuscan in essence, and use prime ingredients depending on the season. At weekday lunchtime, the restaurant offers an 80 Euro lunch menu, this might sound expensive at first, but all the dishes are actually taken from its tasting menu, to ensure the quality of the dishes is just as good as in dinner service. 

Thursday, 23 May 2019

Borgo San Jacopo

Innovative Italian fine dining in Florence


Red salad quinoa, cauliflower, beetroot, sprouts, lovage mayo


On my trip to Florence, sampling local fine dining cuisine is on top of my agenda. After all, classic, casual Tuscan cuisine is already amazing, I was wondering if a fine dining treatment can take it to another level? Does fancy, innovative cooking techniques, combining with prime ingredients really make an impact? To put it to the test, I visited Borgo San Jacopo, a 1 Michelin starred hotel restaurant in the heart of Florence. Headed up by Peter Brunel, the chef is renown for his forward-thinking, outside of the box ideas to create dishes that are unusual, creative, while staying true to the Italian root. 

La Leggenda dei Frati

Tuscan style elegant fine dining 


 Snapper, broccoli, capers


To round off my Florence trip in style, I opted for fine dining, Tuscan style Italian fine dining experience. I was looking for a restaurant that has a good view, classy decor with fine food, and it appears La Leggenda dei Frati fits all of my needs, the Michelin starred restaurant is located on a small hill just outside of the Florence city center, overlooking the beautiful Piazzale Michelangelo site. The restaurant has no more than 10 tables within 2 dining area, all the tables are well spread out with plenty of space. The menu is modern Tuscan style, using mostly local ingredients. To fully experience what the restaurant is capable of, I opted for its 9-course tasting menu.

Ora d'Aria

Casual fine dining in Florence


Roasted pigeon leg and breast, apple butter, honey


From my holiday experience in Florence, besides all of the tourist trap restaurants around the city, the restaurant quality in the city is generally really high, no matter if it is a rustic classic Tuscan restaurant or a fine dining joint. However, it appears all of the high-end restaurants are very formal in the city, with the exception of Ora d'Aria. 
Chef-owner Marco Stabile's restaurant is located in the heart of the city, with a casual, relaxing dining room overlooking the kitchen. For lunch hours, a great value for money, 5-course menu is also on the offer for 35 Euro per person, and that is what I opted for, with an extra a la carte dish.

Monday, 20 May 2019

La Buchetta

Fine quality Tuscan cuisine 


Grilled beef fillet with fresh truffle


Located in the city center of Florence, La Buchetta is an iconic Tuscan restaurant that is extremely popular. Unlike many other Italian restaurants nearby, La Buchetta offers both a classic and creative menu. The classic side of things is your traditional Tuscan cuisine, while the creative menu is mostly modern Italian flair with some unusual twist, such as using vodka in a steak and using blue cheese in a pasta. Meat is a big deal in La Buchetta, with 8 main courses are steak based, out of 15 choices. To fully experience what the restaurant is capable of, I opted for both classic and creative dishes from its menu.

Vini e Vecchi Sapori

Florence's local charm


Steak with cheese and rocket


Located in the heart of Florence, Vini e Vecchi Sapori is perhaps one of the most loved restaurants in the city. Popular to both the locals and tourists, the restaurant is extremely popular so booking is essential, but what is so special about this restaurant? Judging from the menu, it is mostly classic Tuscan cuisine, using local ingredients. What really got me knowing it is truly an authentic restaurant is the fact that is stated it offers no pizza, no takeaway, and cappuccino, a far cry from your tourist trap across the city.

Sunday, 19 May 2019

Trattoria Mario

Tuscan steak house in Florence


Bistecca alla Fiorentina steak


Trattoria Mario, the family-run steak focus restaurant in Florence is considered to be one of the hottest dining spots for any real foodies and meat lovers. Renown for its legendary bistecca alla Fiorentina steak, the giant T bone steak that Florence is so famous for. Opening for lunch only with a no booking policy, this restaurant would get packed out within minutes as soon as it opens its door at noon. Trattoria Mario offers a small selection of pasta dishes, with a wide range of steak cuts, and that is what most people are here.

Hostaria il Desco

Charming Tuscan restaurant in Florence


Baked rack of lamb with truffle

In the busy Florence city center, Hostaria il Desco is hidden on a narrow street on Via delle Terme, not too far away from Ponte Vecchio. Unlike many other local Tuscan restaurants nearby, Hostaria il Desco has a rather unusual decor, it has a very cozy and charming feel to it, with a romantic and elegant touch. The meal is classic Tuscan, with plenty of pasta dishes. The restaurant has been around since 1954, and it has been providing good old fashioned Tuscan cuisine ever since. When a restaurant has been around for so long and still trading, it must be doing something right.

Osteria dell'Enoteca

Classy Tuscan flair in Florence


Steak time!


Osteria dell'Enoteca is a Tuscan style restaurant located in the southern part of Florence city center, not too far from the landmark Pitti Palace. It is somewhat an unusual restaurant, spit across two dining rooms inside an old warehouse. At the same time, it has a fine dining feel to it, thanks to the well spaced out, large tables covered with a white tablecloth, each of the two dining room has no more than 10 tables, making the restaurant has a premium edge. The menu is largely Tuscan cuisine, guests are invited to try its steak for their main course, these are large cut of T bones that would require sharing unless you are a very hungry person, with each weight at least 1kg.

Saturday, 18 May 2019

Ristorante Miky Cinque Terre

Stunning seafood restaurant in Cinque Terre


Raw seafood of red prawns, tuna and seabass

On my trip touring around Northern Italy, one of the highlights was visiting the great Cinque Terre, the beautiful area that made up of 5 small villages on the coast of Liguria. I had not done any restaurant research in advance while I visited Cinque Terre, while I was searching for a lunch spot at Monterosso (one of the 5 villages), I walked passed Ristorante Miky and I decided to take a chance to check out this seafood specialist restaurant. It was only while I am inside and checking online, I found out Ristorante Miky is actually one of the most highly regarded fine dining restaurant in the area. The menu is mostly seafood based, with the classic Italian choices of starters, first course, mains, and desserts.

Osteria alle Testiere

Popular seafood joint in Venice


Seafood platter


If you are a big foodie and happened to be visiting Venice, seafood most likely is high on your agenda. Venice is well renowned for its fresh seafood as a water city, and Osteria alle Testiere is regarded as one of the very best seafood restaurants in the city, with great media endorsement from around the world. As committing to fresh ingredients, the restaurant changes its menu daily, depending on what they can find from fish markets. The restaurant itself is tiny with less than tables, meaning booking in advance is well recommended. Be aware all the tables are closely packed together so this is not the best place to dine if you seek privacy.

L’Osteria di Santa Marina

Creative Venetian cuisine


Shi drum, lentils and pumpkin


Searching for a good quality local restaurant can be tricky when you visit Venice, it is no secret that Venice is one of the most visited city by tourists in the world. On my visit, it was flooded with thousands of visitors from around the world. To capture that profit opportunity, the city is also filled with plenty of "tourist trap" restaurants. To avoid such places, I have done a little research in advance and came across L’Osteria di Santa Marina. The restaurant itself has been recommended by a good number of review sites and judging from the menu, it is fairly creative and taking food influences from around the world, with Venetian cuisine as a foundation. 

Antiche Carampane

Authentic Venetian cuisine



Carpaccio of red tuna, seabass and langoustine


When I visited Venice, dining at a classic, old school Venetian restaurant was high on my agenda list. After spending a great deal of time scouting on the internet, Antiche Carampane kept popping up as a recommendation from many websites, such as Time Out and Culture Trip. The restaurant has been around since 1983, a family run restaurant that prides itself in doing top-notch Venetian cuisine and taking advantage of the local famous Rialto market to sourcing fine ingredients. The menu is your classic Italian affair with appetizer, first course, second course and desserts to pick from.

Monday, 22 April 2019

Park Chinois

Dim sum heaven


Iberico Pork Char Siu Bao and Black Truffle Bao


Once again, I am back at Park Chinois for the fifth time. Park Chinois is easily the best Chinese restaurant in London, and it is a crime that the Michelin guide ignore it as it warrants at least a star in my view. The cooking is mostly Cantonese based but with plenty of modern touches, using prime ingredients from around the world. For lunch hours, the restaurant offers an exceptionally good lunch deal at £30 for two courses with side dishes of rice and vegetable. It also has an extended selection of dim sum, from classic har gau to innovative items such as the pumpkin and hazelnut dumpling. For my fifth visit, I opted for a combination of dim sum as well as some a la carte dishes. 

Duddell's London

Fashionable Chinese dining den 



Duddell’s supreme lobster noodles

Located in London Bridge, Duddell's is a modern Chinese restaurant in a former site of a church. One of the cool factors about Duddell's is its creative take on branding, inside the restaurant, there is a giant cartoon character model, and the menu is full of playful artwork design. Food wise, the cooking is mostly based around Cantonese style, with a modern makeover, using prime ingredients from around the UK and Europe. The restaurant is renown for its excellent dim sum and is a popular lunch spot for the local Chinese living in London. For my weekend lunch, I opted for a few dim sum as starters, followed by some a la carte dishes as mains.

Nobu London (Old Park Lane)

High-end Japanese in London



O-toro and sea urchin


It has been more than 7 years when I last dined at Nobu, the restaurant was once regarded as the very best Japanese restaurant in the UK, both Nobu sites in London (Park Lane and Mayfair) held a Michelin star and dining at Nobu always relate to luxury and glamour, as it is a popular hangout for celebrities. Fast forward to 2019, Nobu seems to be still going strong, it has since lost its Michelin star, but it has also launched a hotel in East London and the rich and famous are still regulars. The menu has also got a revamp, with both classic and modern dishes on offer. Personally, I enjoy my good old fashioned Japanese dishes and opted for a range of classics.

China Tang London

Timeless classic Cantonese cuisine



Slow cooked wagyu beef cheeks

There are not great numbers of classic Chinese restaurants in the UK and a quality one is close to none-exist. Located inside The Dorchester Hotel, China Tang London is one of the few restaurants in London that champion authentic Chinese cuisines, specializing in the Canton region. I have been to China Tang a good number of times now, as I really enjoy its classic approach, no fancy or modern element, just good old fashioned, authentic cooking, using good quality ingredients. Besides its long a la carte menu, the restaurant also offers a mini chef's special menu, offering new dishes developed by the head chef.

Min Jiang

Chinese hotel dining, posh style


Wood-fired Beijing Duck

Min Jiang is one of the very first Chinese fine dining restaurants in London, located inside the luxury Royal Garden hotel on the top floor, the restaurant has gained a reputation as a top Chinese restaurant. The cooking style, like many other Chinese restaurants across the nation, is mostly Cantonese, with a few other regional styles in the mixed. The menu is large, the a la carte menu alone has over 60 dishes to chose from, along with a dim sum menu and 3 tasting menus. For my lunch occasion, I picked a few dim sum and of course, the iconic dish, the Beijing duck, which is the dish that put Min Jiang on the map.

Hakkasan Hanway Place

Sunday lunch in style


Roasted silver cod with Champagne and honey

When you think of a fine dining Chinese restaurant in London, the chance is Hakkasan would be the very first name that pops up to your mind. The iconic restaurant started life in Hanway Place and has since expanded into a global business, with 5 restaurants in London alone. These days, Hakkasan Hanway Place still has maintained its Michelin star status and is still extremely popular to the locals. On Sunday, it offers a special menu, with dim sum taking the main stage, with champagne and cocktails. it is basically a Chinese version of a lazy brunch menu, but at a premium quality level.

Kai Mayfair

Mayfair's Chinese fine dining joint 


Canapes of Prawns on Toast


This is my second visit to Kai Mayfair, the single Michelin starred Chinese restaurant in London. The fine dining restaurant has been around for some time now, with a strong loyal following. Unlike many other high-end restaurants in London, Kai doesn't offer a tasting menu, it is more traditional with a large la carte menu of around 60 dishes. However, the food offering from Kai is far from traditional, with strong South East Asia influences and some creative European ideas in the mixed, resulting in some of the most contemporary Chinese cuisines you can find in London.

Saturday, 16 March 2019

The Ledbury

Simply the best


Lamb, onion, leek, truffle

Yes, it is another blog about The Ledbury, and it is my first fine-dining restaurant that I have visited over 10 times besides Launceston Place (When Tim Allen was head chef). the reason I kept returning to The Ledbury is simple, it is hands down the best restaurant in London easily. Chef-owner Brett Graham has turned the restaurant into a destination place, with people willing to travel from around the world to sample his cooking. The restaurant has been in the World 50 Best List for over 5 consecutive years, as well as holding 2 Michelin stars. 


Sunday, 10 March 2019

Sabor

Spanish sensation in London


Spanish Carabineros

2019 has been a fantastic year for Sabor, the restaurant has gained a Michelin star in its latest UK and Ireland Guide and many food bloggers and food critics would rate it as the Spanish restaurant in the capital. Sabor is owned and operated by chef Nieves and manager Jose, they were the star duo that turned Barrafina into one of the most iconic Spanish tapas bar in London and now both moved on to create Sabor, a tapas and restaurant bar near Mayfair. I have eaten at its upstairs restaurant El Asador and I was in love with it, 6 months later, I returned to try its counter tapas bar on the ground floor which is more layback and casual.

Duddells' London

Modern Chinese dining at a whole new level


Truffle roasted black cod with lily bulb and Nameko mushroom

It has been just over a year since Duddells' London has launched in London Bridge, the art inspired Chinese restaurant is closely associated with design and fashion, hosting regular partnership with local art galleries and fashion shows. The food offering at Duddells is based on traditional Cantonese with some modern western twist in between. You can still see classic flavours such as black bean and dim sum. However, Duddells' version would be an instant upgrade, such as using more premium ingredients and injecting French cooking techniques. for my meal, I opted for a selection of dim sum, as well as some a la carte dishes.

Shanghai Modern

Shanghainese in China Town


Sheng jian bao

China Town in London has been going through a massive change. The Central Cross Development project has seen some major shakeups, with a refurbishment of old buildings and new openings popping up hard and fast. Shanghai Modern is one of the very first new restaurant openings in The Central Cross area, a casual dining Chinese restaurant that label itself specializing in Shanghainese cuisine. China Town's restaurants are dominated by Cantonese cuisine so I am always happy to see more regional Chinese cuisine concepts entering the UK market. 

Sunday, 24 February 2019

Duck and Rice

Chinese feasting, pub style


Feasting time!


Duck and Rice is one of the most unique Chinese restaurants you would see in the UK, a hybrid of a British pub and Chinese restaurant, Duck and Rice is all about serving premium Chinese cuisine with a fine selection of beer to match, spread across 2 floors. The restaurant also sticks to the true British pub identity, hosting regular bingo and quiz nights. The menu of Duck and Rice offers beyond your typical Chinese restaurants, there are plenty of classic Cantonese dishes, but also some other Asian influenced dishes from the like of Japan, such as gyoza and yakitori. 

Shikumen Aldgate

Modern Cantonese in East London


Roasted Chilean Sea Bass Fillet in Black Truffle Sauce

Shikumen has always been one of the better Chinese restaurants in London. Sadly, it has closed down its Earling and Finchley sites with now only Algate and its original Shepherd's Bush sites remaining. Shikumen Algate is located inside the Dorsett City Hotel, the menu is mostly Cantonese with a few regional Chinese dishes in the mixed. You can find many classic dishes such as sweet and sour and dim sum, but also some modern and premium offering that you would not be able to see in most Chinese restaurants in China Town, such as roasted sea bass in black truffle and smoked black Angus beef, which reflects its position as a hotel restaurant.

China Tang London

Classic Cantonese in luxury hotel setting 


Peaking duck at China Tang


China Tang, the Chinese fine dining restaurant inside the 5 stars Dorchester Hotel is one of the top destination restaurants for wealthy travelers from around the world. Located inside the basement of the hotel, this iconic Chinese restaurant was created by the late Sir David Tang, featuring a stunning art deco inspired cocktail bar and dining room. The menu is mostly classic Cantonese dishes, along with some modern dishes created by chef Fong, the head chef who has been at China Tang for over 7 years. This is an extremely popular restaurant, and can even be packed out on a Monday night, so booking is recommended.

Yauatcha City

Modern high-end dim sum restaurant


Homemade spinach tofu with shimeji mushroom with baby asparagus


Part of the mighty Hakkasan empire, Yauatcha is a dim sum restaurant concept that gained success when it was first launched in Soho more than 10 years ago. These days, it has over 10 sites across the world, Yauatcha City is the second site in the UK. The menu is mostly based on Cantonese dim sum, just like in many other classic Chinese restaurants, you will find steam, bake and deep fry dim sum, along with some wok based and stir fry dishes. However, Yauatcha has a strong brand identity with a modern and edgy decor to match, along with some signature dishes that itself become a classic, with many other Chinese restaurants trying to copy.