As glamorous as a Shanghai nightclub without the tit or tack, Yauatcha City champions Cantonese fusion for the fine dining audience.
Alan Yau’s newest hot pot once again masters the magic of bespoke Asian cuisine. This is Chinese cooking with a little more flair then the family affair. And the city slicker sibling of Michelin star, Yauatcha Soho, is doing things a little different.
Exclusive to the site is Supreme Saturday, a set menu that is as lavish as it is plentiful. Think preparation, presentation, peppercorns and spices. The meal begins with a trilogy of two-tier Bamboo steamers hold delicious, delicate dim sum. They are plump, juicy and generously filled - their skin so thin it’s almost translucent.
There’s har gau shrimp, wild mushroom and pork and prawn shui mai. They’re baked. They’re steamed. They’re fried. But more than these bite-size dishes, there’s light, golden venison puffs with sticky rice wrapped in lotus leaf. The mushroom spring rolls are light and warm and the lobster rolls reveal indulgent fleshy crustacean chunks. No more than a handful, and packed with shrimp, water chestnuts and minced pork, the prawn toast offers just the right amount of crunch.
Located on the city’s edge, floor-to-ceiling windows let the day’s light flood in. The semi-circle building, which is more spaceship than restaurant, may look peculiar but what it lacks in aesthetic it makes up for in ambiance. Even more so on the sunny terrace. Sans the weekday footfall of office workers and corporate types down below, this is the perfect Saturday spot.
Out here on the patio, the experience is a sensory one. My taste-buds are on an adventure of Cantonese communal-style dining proportions. The Lobster Vermicelli is a cauldron of sweet pink flesh married with glassy thin vermicelli noodles. It’s messy, claw cracking business and as I poke, pry and suck the meat out of the bones, my eyes are on their own journey.
Taken by the sweeping panorama of London’s Financial District, there is a real calm in the air. And then as I reach for my glass, I notice on my hands, the remains of the flavoursome seafood pot, before waving to the waiter for a few extra napkins.
Yauatcha – 15-17 Broadwick St, London W1F 0DL
Words Jasmine Phull a writer by day, an imbiber by night, sipping sours at the bar is all in a day’s work for our resident bar reviewer and travel writer @f_reshprince