This swish Chelsea restaurant is part of Will Ricker’s mini-chain of stylish pan-Asian eateries (Great Eastern Dining Room, E&O, XO). Elegant oriental lampshades hang from the ceiling of the airy black and white dining room, which is populated by a clientele dressed in the expected chinos or cocktail dresses. The only departure from the polished aesthetic is the use of disposable tablecloths, which are whipped away after every course – not a bad idea considering all the dipping sauces served.
The menu includes everything from sushi to dumplings, curries to barbecue dishes – all cooked to a high standard. Highlights of our meal included a generous portion of pad thai (one of the best we’ve found in London), and the restaurant’s signature salt and chilli squid, which was attractively presented in a newspaper cone. Also enjoyable was duck and watermelon salad with refreshing sprigs of mint and coriander, all coated in a hoi sin dressing – though it was a little on the sweet side.
To drink, there’s Asian beer, wine, saké or tea and a reasonably priced cocktail menu. Our attentive suited and booted waiter was keen on a joke, such as telling us with a twinkle in his eye that the next-door table had settled our bill.