Dim Sum at Yauatcha

Mimi ON Aug 15, 2011 AT 4:23 pm

Yauatcha

Yauatcha

by John Gregory Smith

Yauatcha started a wave of upmarket Chinese restaurants in London when it opened in 2004. Gone were the flocked red walls, golden dragons and gloopy sauces and in was sophisticated food, perfect cocktails and killer interiors. The standard was set and the restaurant gained a Michelin star in its first year. Fast-forward 7 years and Yauatcha has retained the star and had a makeover.  The upstairs tearoom has been turned into a dining room and bar, with the restaurants signature blue look, and Yauatcha’s executive chef, Tong Chee Hwee, has added 28 new dishes to the menu, which focus more on delicate, modern dim sum.

Dinner started with an enormous plate of deliciously chewy fried chilli squid (£10.50), which was served with a crunchy topping of deep fried oatmeal, curry leaves and red chilli that added a lovely nutty flavour. Then we moved onto the steamed dumplings; scallop shui mai (£7.50) and prawn shui mai with chicken (£7.50). These were extremely good dumplings. The fillings were generous and fresh and the wrappings thin and delicate. They were a pleasure to eat and I could quite happily have worked my way through the entire section of the menu. Next came little pieces of sea bass fillets in a black bean sauce (£8.80), which had been carefully wrapped with asparagus and steamed. It was delicate, light and the perfect example of how good Chinese food can be.

Dim Sum at Yauatcha

Dim Sum at Yauatcha

After our very generous dim sum, we moved onto the main dishes. I am obsessed with noodles. I love them in any form. I asked for the chefs recommendation and we were presented with Penang kwetio noodles (£12.30), which were slightly chewy, flat rice noodles that had been stir fried with huge scallops, prawns, egg, nuts and lettuce, in dark soy sauce. This was Malaysian style street food, fancied up, and it was perfect. Then came the highlight of the meal; spicy aubergine’s with okra, French beans and sato beans (otherwise know as the stink beans!) (£12.80). The aubergine had been braised to perfection with chilli and soy and then stir fried with the beans and more garlic than you can imagine. It was superb and worth going back to eat in vast quantities with rice.

Despite the fact the old tearoom had been turned into a shiny new dining room, the wonderful Asian cakes and desserts were still proudly on display in the window.  The Vanilla cheese cake (£7.75), which came in a perfect cube, with white chocolate foam, was a light, creamy pleasure to eat and the chocolate praline cake, (£7.75) with different layers and textures of milk and dark chocolate, was sublime.

www.yauatcha.com

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