Dim Sum Tea-time
15th February 2012
Walking through Soho, hunger panged at tea-time, having had an ‘experience‘ earlier in the day, I wanted to resuscitate my birthday’s dining experiences. What better way than going to Yauatcha for some calming afternoon tea and at least there, I had a Michelin star reassurance and a wooing promise of cake…
Arriving at 15.30, I was surprised that five tables were occupied, with late lunches and those like myself wanting tea. I didn’t have the time or the inclination for full-on afternoon tea as already had a dinner reservation elsewhere, so opted for tea, dim sum and cake. Service was spot on, slick, attentive and friendly – just what I wanted.
Condiments arrived at the table (these were complimentary: chilli, seafood, soy sauces and a delicious sweet pickled cucumber).
I recall a few years ago when I dined at Ping Pong these were chargeable, much to my horror, if this has changed now (I stand corrected). My dim sum arrived promptly, before my tea in fact. These were from the A la Carte menu’s steamed section, the Har gau (£5 for 3) were plump with a juicy prawn filling.
The billowy Char sui buns (£3.80) had a delicious, sticky pork filling.
The tea menu showcased a plethora of options: Chinese, Taiwanese, Indian and Sri Lankan teas. I opted for cleansing tea (Silver Needle from Fujian, China, at £7.40 per pot).
I knew this would be gentle in flavour and calming, as I’d sampled similar at Teanamu’s tea-house.
To finish my tea experience, I opted for a Coconut Charlotte. To be frank, I could have opted for any of the desserts as the descriptions all sounded tempting. Whilst waiting, I took a quick look at the Pattiserie counter (for dining display and takeaway), which was an absolute delight, so many beautiful colours and delicate combinations.
I was told that these were made off-site in London, at a hub for the Hakkasan group and delivered daily (morning and afternoon for service).
When I recieved my Chalotte, it still had the card placemat, as from the counter. I would have preffered this to have been removed, so diving into it on the plate was easier and nicer on the eye.
The Charlotte was like a white-chocolate génoise, with a coconut cream exterior and a mango filling that oozed out, when sliced. It was so light and decadent to eat, if I didn’t have a dinner reservation, I’d have easily have ordered more.
All in all, my day was resurrected, with good service, well executed dishes and calm. I think my experience could have only have been improved, by changing the music selection. Yauatcha had the music on very loud and it was very bass-heavy. Hey-ho, one can’t have everything, if the quality of food supercedes the music (as it did) I’m fine with that. I’m definately returning for more…
Tel: 020 7494 8888 Website: http://www.yauatcha.com/