Descend the stairs to the sensual basement of this self-styled tea house in Soho and graze on exquisite all-day dim sum - pricier than most, but wonderful.
Such acutely stylish venues rarely last, but after a decade Yauatcha can add longevity to its enviable list of attributes. So why do people still glide down the stairs of this self-styled Taipai tea house into its sensual basement? The design helps: the long bar, spot-lit black tables and illuminated fish tank still have allure, and the nightclub vibe is boosted by beautiful staff and bass-heavy beats. Even being shunted away to seats behind the staircase has benefits (privacy).
And there’s substance behind the style. Day-and-night dim sum was a Yauatcha innovation, and a special of scallop and edamame crystal dumplings produced three delicate, pendulous sacs filled with a textural mix of resilient beans, crunchy carrot morsels, flavourful fragments of scallop and juicy sweetcorn. Gai lan came with just enough salted fish sauce to pique the palate, and fragrant lotus leaf rice held moist treats of egg, chicken and dried shrimps.
Exotic teas and East-West fusion desserts (yuzu brûlée tart) are highlights too (sample them in the ground-floor tea room), and main courses hold interest (sea bass with shiitake and wolf berry, say), but grazing on exquisite snacks is the primary culinary draw – though prices might make you wince.
15 Broadwick Street
|Opening hours:||Mon-Sat 12–11.30pm, Sun 12–10.30pm|
|Transport:||Tube: Leicester Square, Piccadilly Circus or Tottenham Court Road tube|
|Price:||Dim sum £4-£15. Set meal (2-6pm Mon-Thur) £14.44 per person (minimum 2)|
|Do you own this business?|
Average User Rating
3.9 / 5
- 5 star:18
- 4 star:13
- 3 star:3
- 2 star:3
- 1 star:4
This place keeps on impressing - from the slick service to the gorgeous food. Excellent dim sum - those venison puffs are still one of my favourite things to eat in London - so it's definitely worth just heading down and ordering a bucketload of those. If you do veer away from dim sum there are some lovely bits and bobs to try. Go for the 'taste of Yauatcha' - a very good value set menu showcasing some of its best dishes.
Six of us went for my birthday and none of us had been before, we all loved it! Even though it is slightly on the pricey side it is most definitely worth it! The food was beautifully presented and tasted even better. And be prepared to make your way through the cocktail list there are some fantastic ones on there.
Very poor service, would not return again. We'd been to yautcha several years back and both food and service were lovely, but this time it was appalling. The waiter had kept our wine of the same type in a cooler shared with a table of 12 people, then insisted we had drunk 5 (!) bottles when we'd only had a glass each and he'd been serving our wine to the other table. Hope they enjoyed £200 of our wine!
Very expensive. We chose the place based on this review. Set menu for two was £40 not £14.44 per person like this article suggests. Tap water was not possible and the famous crispy duck rolls were very dry. Atmosphere, service and other food was OK but it was so expensive we left hungry. You'll get just as good Dim Sum somewhere else for much less. On a side note, I noticed the house sound system when we were leaving was a large peppering of highly priced Genelic studio monitors. These are speakers I have wanted for years and cost as much as £1400 for a single pair. The place was literally covered in them. Perhaps that's where all your money goes.
First time went to Yauatcha. Service and food rubbish.!!!!!! Can't believe they charged me almost £50 t eat some rubbish food! Best go to China Town for Proper real Dim Sum! We booked a table for 7pm and it was not ready until 7.20pm! Not the same without Alan Yau!
Went for a work lunch on a Friday and the atmosphere was great, service was good despite it being quite busy. Our waiter was very attentive and helped us with recommendations, it being our first time. The dumplings were excellent and we were spoilt for choice, would be keen to try the tasting menus on next visit to get some variety, otherwise good to order a selection of dishes and share. Obviously a bit pricier than your usual lunch spot, however food, venue and staff certainly make it worth it!
Certainly mixed reviews below but we enjoyed our team lunch there. Took a while to get served and at least get our drinks order in but then things flowed a bit better from there. Food was great though!
Great place for lunch, good selection of dishes and very reasonably priced given excellent service and decent food. Looks more expensive than it is, will be back
My girlfriend and I visited Yauatcha last week, and never have we ever been more disappointed by any restaurant as we were by this. It was a sheer waste of money. Don't get us wrong, we enjoy fine dining, and are willing and able to pay for a five star restaurant but this was just a waste of time and money. The dishes were overrated and not worth their price at all. Not one thing can we ordered was up to a satisfactory standard, let alone delectable, specially the crispy squid, which at one point became un-edible. Bad experience, wouldn't recommend anyone to go there.
Yauatcha is one of the oldest restaurants in Soho - open for over a decade, it's pretty impressive given the fast turnover of other restaurants. I'm putting this down to the perfect service, dreamy interior and excellent dim sum. Not all items on the menu are amazing - stick to dim sum though and you'll be flying.
BAD SERVICE! MAJOR FOOD MIX UP! LONG FOOD WAIT!!! About a 20min wait to get seated for a reservation. However once getting to the table, service started out ok... but MAJOR mishaps occurred once food arrived. Firstly my husband and I are vegetarian and were served PORK dumplings instead of steamed vegetable dumplings. Thank god i knew the minute they arrived, and stuck the chopstick in... my husband was livid at this mistake as he has NEVER eaten pork in life! The food was quickly changed, so thought we were on track again. However the main dished took OVER AN HOUR to arrive! It was so late that as soon as we were served the mains we were told they were making last orders as the kitchen & bar were about to close. So apart from the fact that the food was late, desert wouldn't have been an option! The manager profusely apologised for the mistakes and told us our cocktails would be complimentary. so £40 was taken off our bill. They also brought a complimentary bag of macaroons, which was a nice gesture, but we were already OVER this place at this point. What was supposed to be a lovely night out for the Chinese new year celebration, turned into a crappy annoyed experience.... and though the cocktails & interior design were good they weren't enough to redeem the mishaps and to make me want to return. Won't be going back ...sorry!
Fantastic cocktails and delicious dim sum in a great environment. Highly recommend the duck pumpkin puff. We had a fantastic time and will definitely be returning.
One of the best restaurants in London, I return here again and again to enjoy the incredible selection of dim sum and the amazing cocktails. The seating lends itself well to groups and the sharing aspect breaks the ice for dates and business lunches. They also have the best prawn toast and the most beautiful afters.
They've had some bad reviews on service before but tonight, we had amazing service. The food arrived promptly (if a little too fast) and there was always someone to assist. Regarding the food; simple and delicious. It's prepared beautifully and is light too. I had the book a table 9 dish taster and cocktail menu and we could go on for a drink at the bar afterwards. When it says 9, it means, 9 types. Don't be disguised, some are served in the same plate. I think we had 5 plates in total. All in all though, a fabulous time. Would recommend it.
Brilliant selection of Dim Sum, but honestly don't even bother with the desserts. Looks pretty but incredibly oversweet and very average pastry. We tried the Green tea choux, raspberry delice, peach melba, and Black Forest. Will just be coming back for cocktails, and crispy duck rolls!
To be honest the WORST ever restaurant and service I ever been in Soho! OVERPRICE food, RUBISH service. i After i finish eat the menu set for 2 + service 32.49£ i was still hungry... very DISAPPOINTED , please don't go THERE!!! I was there 3 june this month for my birthday...straight after that i go to Plum valley for proper Chinese food with good service and very delicious food.
Absolutely love this restaurant. The service is great and the food amazing. A little bit expensive comparing Royal China for example. Although this last one has an awful service, I guess that is where the difference is. I totally recommend.
Good well-presented food and decent service, but it is without doubt overpriced and the very tight seating is particularly irritating given how expensive the food is.
To those with negative reviews about bad service, noisy atmosphere etc - DONT BOTHER rather than just blah blah. Good for the rest of us trying to find seat there. This is still a great place, lively atmosphere and if you're after a great freshly made and brilliantly made dim sums - still hard to beat compared to ANY Chinatown places - then Yauatcha still does it for me since it's early days. I came here yesterday around 12.15pm (for lunch with my sister) - surprisingly great time to come as service just starting off and good discreet service. Costs more but not overly expensive by any means - and when comparing to some dross you get elsewhere and still pay anything for it - this is worth EVERY PENNY.
Probably the best Chinese food I've ever had! The ambiance and style had actual substance with the divine dim sum and professionally prepared drinks. Stand outs on our order were the spinach balls with prawn and cuttlefish in a black bean sauce and the kumquat and jasmine ice tea. The maitre de was amazing as we arrived without a reservation at 8:00 o'clock on a Saturday night, plus a baby and she still managed to give us a stunning table. Wish I left room for the beautiful looking desserts though. We will definitely go back when we are in London again.
As a frequent visitor to yauatcha, all I can say is that the food is excellent (the dim sum particularly), the staff always friendly and helpful, especially to lone diners like myself, and i've never had a single problem there with service or anything on any of the dozen or more occasions i've been. It can get loud on the bottom floor particularly late on a weekend night, but if you go at around 6pm for an early dinner it's very peaceful and relaxing, especially up on the ground floor. Highly highly recommended. One of my all time London favourites.
great atmosphere, great food. we spent £88 for 2, including 6 different dishes, 2 desserts, coffee and 2 cocktails (no wine) which was good value for money!
Very nice place and good food but I wouldn't go there again. This is because it was so thriving and busy that I couldn't hear myself think, so forget having a conversation... at least when it's busy anyway
My husband and I had a lovely time at the restaurant yesterday night. It was a good choice to celebrate my birthday. The staff was very helpful (from reception until desserts), the interior is completely different to conventional Chinese restaurants, very modern (I suggest the lower ground) and the dim sums are delicious. I would definatelly reccoment and return.
Very very cool looking place and crowd. Great service and food. Prices are reasonable although drink prices (except cocktails) are high. The only problem is that it was incredibly loud in there and I couldn't hold a conversation with my girlfriend sat opposite. That was at 10pm Friday night, maybe it is different at other times.