Another day, another Michelin star, sigh. Actually this time it was a completely impromptu, completely brilliant idea by a friend for pre-Christmas lunch. Called Hakkasan last minute and my friend estimated it would be about £15 a head plus drinks each. I thought this was wishful thinking but turns out this was completely right – bargain.
Whatever it is like for dinner, Hakkasan is brilliant for a dim sum lunch. It’s pretty swish inside, service is great, food was awesome. And yet it has one major major problem – the price of the wine. Let’s face it, you have to have wine if you decide to go for a posh lunch, a working one or otherwise. It is against my religion not to. And yet glasses of wine were priced at a quite ridiculous average of £9 for a small (?!?!?!) and £13 for a large (?!?!?!). Made me quite angry – I don’t care how nice the wine is, the mark up must be huge, and any decent restaurant should have a good value house wine or similar that is affordable. I was annoyed. But not annoyed enough not to have wine. So I got a small (tiny really) glass which was marked at £9 but somehow ended up as £7 on the bill – which worked out at about £1 a sip. So silly when the rest of the meal was such great value. I hope they sort this out as I’d love to pop in and try some more dim sum.
So to the food – 3 each is perfect to be reasonably full and it’s best to share, although I think for feng shui reasons you get 3 pieces of dim sum per plate so it can be hard with 2 Brits and our horrible politeness for not taking the last one. But it was really really excellent. Below are some photos of what we ordered and some comments on it (I’ve lost the dim sum menu so descriptions are not as good as they could be):
Beef dumpling “thingies” – really really tasty
Pork and prawn xiao long bao – recommended by our lovely waitress these were amaaaazing, probably my favourite, filled with a really rich soup – lovely
Chive prawn dumpling thingies – really fresh and interesting
Duck roll thingies – yummy
Sea bass – really delicate and delicious
Sweet black sesame rolls (as dessert) – wierd gloopy consistency and a bit like Nutella inside, but in a good way
So all this yummy food, a good 1 1/2 hours of chat and a delightful waitress set us back only £15 each for the food (and 3 dim sum makes you deliciously full). My only concerns being the ridiculously expensive wine and snooty woman at the door. It ended up costing me £25 with wine and service which is still good though for a special lunch. So much more on the menu to try (although I’d avoid the wierd mango thing which was inexplicably served on a bed of squeezy mayonnaise – more photos of other dim sum that my friends had are on the HPL facebook page).