London Tastin'

A.Wong - Dim Sum

I know I took a while to visit A.Wong, mostly because I kept hearing mixed reviews, some really like it, some not. Their dim sum is unlike any other in London, it’s modern and some dishes look nothing like the menu description, especially if you’ve tried the traditional version before and know how it should look. It’s not as satisfying as Princess Garden where a massive table worth of food can be ordered for very little money, which is what Chinese food is mostly known for, large portions and good value. That said, A.Wong is by no means expensive, 6 of us each paid about £25, not bad. 

It’s not traditional dim sum and as soon as you leave that traditional dim sum criteria behind, it’s actually quite enjoyable. The duck egg custard buns were my favourites, the right amount of sweetness, slightly crispy bottoms, runny centre and each looked stunning. The XLB was good too, not dry like the Princess Garden ones and a good sized filling. Other dishes were slightly odd, some I couldn’t decide whether I liked or not, especially the ones that looked messy or topped with unnecessary sweet foam, but it’s always interesting to try new things. 

As a Chinese person, I think I’ll always prefer the traditional style. It’s simple and I know what I’ll get. A.Wong is not a place I’d go regularly, but once in a while it’s nice to step outside the box. 


I liked the following dishes

Shanghai steamed dumplings, ginger infused vinegar

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Tanya’s Cafe - Raw Vegan in Chelsea

Tanya’s Cafe is the new raw vegan restaurant in Chelsea’s Myhotel. They offer super delicious and healthy desserts like blueberry cheesecake made from raw cashew nuts. Assorted chocolates with healthy fillings like peanut butter. All juices are cold pressed and the lunch menu range from detox to superfood raw salads. The kitchen is fully open and doesn’t even have a hob since zero cooking is required. 

I really loved the calm and garden like space. The blueberry cheesecake was light and every bit as good as the real thing. The filter coffee was well made and a good range of teas are offered. It’s only been open for a month and the clientele seem to be pre and post gym ladies from the nearby KX gym. Be sure to check it out if you are nearby and want something healthy!

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Last week of August

If any of you follow me on instagram , you probably noticed how much I’ve been eating out (crazy amounts) this week, mostly because of my birthday and family visiting from Beijing. I don’t normally eat out so much (or as much), especially now I’m studying a Nutrition programme and are constantly struggling between eating healthy (at home) and getting lured out to my favourite restaurants. I think this week the latter won over by far…I want to remember all the great food I had so wrote this post, sorry for the bad instagram photos, iPhone’s convenience does make me lazy.

Monday

Granger & Co - Clerkenwell

Granger & Co at Nottinghill Gate is one of my favourite brunch spots but the weekend queue does get annoying. Who’d queue for an hour on a relaxing Sunday morning??? errr…me, done that with friends a few times, though I really hate it. My birthday was on a bank holiday Monday, we went to the new Granger & Co at Clerkenwell, which was bigger, brighter, and had zero queue! I had avocado on toast and my friend ordered her usual scrambled eggs, which nowhere in London does better than Granger! Or at least does it the Granger way!

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Birthday dinner at Launceston Place

Birthday dinner at Launceston Place has become a little tradition of ours. It’s one of those epic meals that’ll leave you with a food coma for days. Last year my friend and I had a 7 course tasting menu for 4 and half hours. This year we raised our game to 11 courses (we added a cheese course because 10 wasn’t enough hahah) and yes definitely *suffering* food coma as I’m writing this.

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Southerden Pastry - Peckham

I’m currently obsessed with two pastry shops - Mel’s Southerden Pastry at Peckham and Le Patisserie Des Raves. If you have time or happen to pass by Peckham, be sure to check out Mel’s pastry shop. It’s always full of too-hard-to-decide-which-one cakes, the colourful Choumert buns filled with vanilla creme, the beautiful orange & cardamon meringue tart. Or go for something savoury because she makes excellent bread in store (I have a croissant from the shop for breakfast right now hehe!).

Here is the website for more details!  

Photos below!

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Lyle

Lyle at the Tea Building in Shoreditch has been one of my favourite recent openings. The food is like a mix of Koya and St John, stripped down simple with only the best quality ingredients. The menu is constantly changing, I’ve been 3 times now and not had the same dish twice. Highly recommended! And it’s not hard to book! Lunch is a la carte but dinner is set menu only. Price is about £40pp (really depends on how much you eat at lunch, I ate a lot…)

More details on their site 

Fera at Claridges

Fera is Simon Rogan’s new restaurant at Claridges hotel. I tried the long tasting menu (£125pp) which took about 3 hours! Dishes were good like L’enclume, but I’m not a huge fan of the deco, rather business hotel lobby like. Personally I prefer the cosy and naturally lit space at L’enclume. which I highly recommend everyone to try at least once. Regarding Fera, two of us spent about £370 (including a half bottle of wine), which makes it a special occasion type of place, but I’m not so sure I’d come for my birthday. Food was good but not stunning. But it’s still early days and it’ll be really interesting to see how the restaurant will evolve, especially when service was already so smooth on the first opening day. 

Photos!

Stewed rabbit with lovage

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Kurobuta - Pop up Chelsea

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In a nutshell: delicious modern Japanese pop up in Chelsea

Rating: 4/5

Cuisine: modern Japanese

Price: £50pp


Kurobuta is a temporary pop up on Kings Road (Chelsea), but based on how delicious the food was I really hope they’ll consider to stay permanently. However, they will open a more permanent space in Marble Arch in the new year so follow their twitter to stay tuned. The restaurant on Kings Road will remain open till end of December, so hurry up before they close! Food was really delicious, Japanese Izakaya style with small plates (not too small, good size) designed for sharing for the whole table. Food combinations were very creative, I tried an interesting mix of grilled mushrooms with Gorgonzola and was amazed by how beautiful all the elements went together. The Chilean sea bass from the blackboard was rich and creamy with a beautiful ponzu shiso dressing. They also do modern Japanese desserts like yuzu tart with matcha buttercream cookie! So what are you waiting for!!


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Grain Store - Kings Cross

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In a nutshell: veggie centric restaurant with clever and delicious dishes from chef Bruno Loubet

Rating: 4/5

Cuisine: modern

Price £30+pp


Grain Store has been on my list for a while, mostly because some people really like it and some didn’t. I’m a huge fan of healthy restaurants, especially those using vegetables in a creative as well as delicious way. When I read the menu from Grain Store, everything sounded creative and decision was really tough, the ‘vegetable’ chorizo scotch egg, the wild mushroom croquettes, the chargrilled endive and hazelnut crumble. If that’s not delicious enough, the meat dishes were just as tempting, braised beef with root vegetable puree and tea soaked golden grapes with wood pigeon. Food certainly didn’t disappoint and I also loved the restaurant space with bright nature light.


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