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A Mayfair spin-off of the original high-end Chinese restaurant
Hakkasan Mayfair may not be the original – that’s Hakkasan Hanway Place, over in Fitzrovia – but it’s pretty much a clone of the first, right down to the Michelin star. Plus, thanks to its snazzy location, is the one we’re always asked about.
Once again, it’s a high-end Cantonese restaurant in a sexy basement: you’ll blink as your eyes adjust to the moody lighting (spots dangling over tables, very little anywhere else). Picture a cross between an opium den and ‘The Matrix’ and you’re there. Service, too, is as polished as it gets.
As for the food, it’s good, though not as showstopping as you’d expect for the price. The best dishes were the signatures: jasmine tea-smoked ribs (now served off the bone, still perfection) or deep-fried soft-shell crab (salty and moreish, with tiny flecks of chilli and red onion). The Singapore noodles, fat with sprouts and seafood, were also decent (and, at £14 for a big plate, a bit of a steal), as was pomegranate seed-studded sweet and sour pork (£19). But don’t bother with salt and pepper squid (too flabby) or the spicy prawns (just dull).
You don’t have to dress up, but you should feel free to: everyone here is either rich or beautiful. And they’ve come to pose. On my visit, two wannabes in white jumpsuits were taking selfies in the full-length mirror in the loo. Can’t get a table downstairs? You can eat in the ground-floor lounge bar, too.
17 Bruton Street
|Transport:||Tube: Green Park tube|
|Price:||Dinner for two with drinks and service: around £160.|
|Do you own this business?|