sounds like a great place, I love it when you don’t feel rushed. What did you order?
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County Hall, Riverside Building, Westminster Bridge Rd, London SE1 7PB
“Zen China specializes in Imperial Beijing cuisine, with a focus on traditional North Chinese regional cooking, influenced by the imperial tradition. Zen China’s signature dish is the Authentic Beijing Roast Duck, as known as Peking Duck. We are...” more...
57 reviews of Hakkasan in English
If you are going there for the first time-be prepared that the atmosphere is kind of unusual.For me,personally,the atmosphere when I step inside was like I am entering a night club.May be this was an effect of the dramatic dark wooden decor. But when you get used to it..you will enjoy it :)
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bexb-d, 20 September 2012:
Chinese cuisine at its best, amazing decor, quite unique! contributes to the special feeling , the anticipation that this restaurant creates.
The tastes, the smells, all wonderful and lingering long after you leave.
Fantastic and delicious!
Still the best restaurant in London, for my money. Yes, not just the best Chinese but the best restaurant of any cuisine. Truly stands up to the best in New York.
The team have really thought about every ingredient and they have created a nouvelle Chinoise cuisine that is not pretentious or the ramshackle fusion you find in some modern Chinese restaurants.
I would recommend all their duck dishes, the lobster in garlic and black bean and the surprising turnip cake which is a creamy maked purée topped with shredded bacon. Tremendous.
Hakkasan still has not been ousted as my top restaurant in London. I recently went to its sister restaurant in Miami (yes very random) and it wasn't quite as delectable as the London version.
I'll admit to being ridiculously biased but I still have not found anything that quite compares to their peppery veggie chicken, morning glory, medley of exotic cocktails and did I mention hot (male) bartenders? Obviously that doesn't impact the taste of the cocktails..
It better be on your list for top London restaurants to visit. Avid movie goers will remember that Hugh Grant took his 'crush' there on a first date in 'About a Boy'. So if its good enough for Hugh...
For photos see Greedy Diva @ http://greedydiva.blogspot.com/2010/10/hakkasan-fitzrovia...
For his birthday this year, The Peanut Gallery chose to be taken to Hakkasan. I can only guess it is no coincidence that the papers announced the next day that it is the most expensive restaurant, per minute of dining, in London. Uncanny.
Hakkasan seems to be one of those places - you'll either love it or you'll hate it. I'm firmly in the love camp.
Soaring ceIlings, dim lighting and dramatic, dark wooden decor reminded me of Buddakan in New York. Unlike in New York, where great grub and a spectacular setting often go hand in hand, it's so rare in London for such a fabulous fit out not to mean the food is complete rubbish.
I have heard rumours of too cool for school service and door bouncers - there's NOTHING I hate more. Although they're glamorous with some gorgeous kit for uniforms (I'd wear those blue dresses on a night out) we found service at all times to be efficient, but quite friendly and helpful. I suppose the area when you first walk and face the line up in could be a tad intimidating. It feels like entering a night club and you have your name ticked off a list before you even step inside.
But we quickly warmed up to it with a few martinis at the bar (lychee for me, classic for the birthday boy). It's fun place for some great cocktails, even if you don't stop for dinner.
Once seated (for our strictly 2 hour time slot of feeding - we arrived early to linger at the bar for a while first), we started with prawn toast and a duck salad.
The large, bulbous sesame prawn toasts are in a different league to anything I've had in a long while. They're fleshy and sweet, topped with sesame and served with a side of fried seaweed and enoki mushrooms. (£13.50)
The crispy duck salad mixes moist strips of duck with crispy fresh greens, pomelo, pine nut and shallots. Very nice, if a tad forgettable. (£19.50)
Our main serving of roast duck with Chinese herbs is soon pronounced by TPG, serious duck addict, to be the best he's ever eaten. It's full juicy, fatty flavour is spiced up by some generous seasoning, and the texture of crispy skin against moist juicy meat is spot on. (£21.00)
Moist chunks of peppery, stir fried, rib-eye beef with merlot come spilling from a delicate, spindly nest. Again, big flavours and execution is just right. (£18.80)Desserts are artistic creations. Naturally, TPG has the warm coconut rice pudding with mango caviar and black sesame crunch. I have the gorgeous buttermilk bavarois with blood orange jelly and fresh blood orange. (£8.00 each). Both are stunning, with interesting, indulgent flavours - a party in your mouth.
Hakkasan, under chef Tong Chee Hwee, has held a Michelin star since 2003. The food is excellent and the atmosphere is buzzing. Yes, Hakkasan is expensive - expect to upwards of £50 per head for food, and prices can of course soar if you get stuck into the cocktails or the wagyu (there's pair of £58 wagyu dishes). However, you can experience the glamour and some great Chinese food for a fraction of the price if you go for dim sum. It's fresh, interesting and the flavours pack some serious punch. I'll be back.
Amazing food and gorgeous champagne. Definitely too many people serving you but they're all incredibly polite and helpful. Decor perhaps a bit too dark...
Genrally a fantastic experience but way too expensive!
Had lunch here on Friday. Overall really good, had dim sum to start which was pretty standard. As for mains, spicy beef was great, the prawns were really good, lobster with black beans was excellent and the pork dish also good.
We also had the crab, which looked good as it came in the shell with all the claws, but it was actually annoying and time consuming to get the crab out of the shell, and not really worth the effort, particularly as we were with clients so had to try to not make too much of a mess (although the sauce ended up all over my shirt anyway).
Dessert was good, its nice to be able to have something other than lychees or banana fritters in a Chinese restaurant
No hype this is the one. Consistant quality. Impecable staff and terrific Ambience. Some say it's too dark but my take is the dim light gives you more chance to savour the flavour of the cuisine. This is what I think they are trying to acheve and I believe they succced. Bar staff are terrific and seem to get it just right even when you take clients and try to impress ( I admit my Vodka knowledge is lacking..OK Jake its crap.) Top Dishes : Silver Cod, Vggie Chicken (love regular but this is terrific. No1 's Dish Tofu and Beef. Loved the Miami branch but it's just not London!
Hakkasan - Pics at The London Foodie
I have a love-hate relationship with Hakkasan – there are so many things to admire about this place but also so much I dislike. Over the years, I have returned many times to Hakkasan, and on every visit I found that what I loved most about this place - the food - had been consistently good. My last visit was no exception.
Much has been said about French designer Christian Liaigre’s multi million pound interior, Hakkasan’s Michelin Star rating in 2003, and its listing in S. Pellegrino World’s 50 Best Restaurants in 2008, so I will not go over old ground.
Despite the occasional snooty service, and the extortionate prices for their teas I keep going back. I love the décor, and unlike many, I do not feel that the restaurant lighting is excessively dark - I find it soothing and feel that it adds to the overall experience at Hakkasan.
I was pleasantly surprised to find I was able to book a table at 12:30pm for dim sum when I called on that same Saturday morning. Dr G and I headed to the familiar spot on Hanway Place, and were soon seated. We ordered a pot of “Orchid Pao Chung” tea @ £4.30 and a selection of eight dim sum dishes. These were:
“Scallop shumai with tobiko caviar” @ £5.20 – the scallops tasted fresh, and were within the finest skin I have encountered. The tobiko caviar added a sophisticated look and a pleasant saltiness/crunchiness to the delicate scallops.
“Braised beef brisket with cheung fun” @ £4.80 – this was also delicious although I was expecting to have beef brisket cheung fun not “with” cheung fun (my mistake!). The meat was braised to perfection in a deliciously sweet broth with hints of cinnamon and star anise. It was lovely to be able to finish off this delicious sauce with the added cheung fun.
“Crispy smoked duck and pumpkin puff” @ £4.80 – I loved both the presentation and flavours of this dish. The combination of pumpkin and duck was perfect and made for a good alternative to the more usual prawn & pork combo.
“Sticky rice in lotus leaf with wind dried pork and salted duck egg yolk” @ £4.50 –this was also a delicious dish with plenty of salted duck egg and pork filling in a thin case of sticky rice.
“Pan fried turnip cake with garlic and Chinese chive” @ 5.50 – the cake had a lovely texture, was crispy on the outside with a delicious flavor of fried chives and garlic. This was one of the highlights.
“Steamed corn-fed chicken bun with abalone and crabmeat” @ £4.50 – the combination of the different meats was surprisingly good within a light and delicious pastry.
“Steamed crabmeat siew long bun” @ £6.00 – Hakkasan’s take on xiao long bao or Shanghai dumplings was as expected excellent, with plenty of soup and a thin, delicate skin.
“Sweet black sesame ball” @ £3.30 – stunning presentation and a light, fragile outer casing containing a generous amount of rich, sweet and nutty black sesame paste. This was a fantastic dessert and one I will make sure to order on my next visit.
I apologize for the poor quality of the pictures. Hakkasan is renowned for not allowing any photography, and I was politely asked by management to stop taking pictures.
Cost: £52 for two, or £26 per person including 13% (!) service charge. This is nearly twice as much as I would normally pay in most dim sum eateries in London.
Likes: Excellent quality dishes beautifully presented, ultra fresh ingredients, stunningly designed restaurant.
Dislikes: Efficient but impersonal service, no refilling of tea pot, and no photography allowed.
Verdict: Hakkasan is one of those restaurants many would love to hate. I love it. I am still surprised by the amount of hostility this place attracts but in my opinion, despite the ridiculously high prices and the impersonal service, the food is fantastic and I will certainly be going back for more.
It took me a long old time to get around to visiting Hakkasan and frankly had heard nothing but great things about it so was all set to enjoy a leisurely 'Thank God it's Friday' lunch with my oldest and thank goodness richest friend....the idea was to eat, drink and make very very merry indeed whilst catching up and generally having a rip roaring old time.
Oh Dear! Despite many many glowing reports about firstly the amazing ambience, secondly the amazing cocktails and thirdly the amazing food, it was a disaster....the cocktails were really average, the food was so ludicrously overpriced for tiny portions that it was laughable and we were one of only 4 tables occupied in the whole restaurant, given the above I'm really not surprised...maybe it's passed it's sell by date...maybe we were just unlucky....but it was really disappointing and so stupidly expensive that even 'The Millionaire' baulked at the bill....this from a man who thinks nothing of paying £500 lunch for two....if he enjoys it. My advice? Go to China Tang instead.
The entrance of the restaurant (in a basement) said it all and much about what you are about to find. Down there, is like you are no longer in London, the waiters have a strong unknown funny accent, the food is not just pretty and no flavour but rather strangely mixed on the plate and scrumptiously flavoured.
This restaurant is a lovely way of meeting with asian country, without wasting as much money on travel.......
The whole experience was lovely
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