My friend C wanted to catch up for dinner in Yauatcha and the night started off pretty badly. I arrived early and asked to be led to our table at the restaurant downstairs instead of waiting by the bar upstairs. When the server showed me our table a group of foreign men were sprawled across a part of our booth.
SERVER: Excuse me, would you mind moving please, the guest has arrived for this table
FOREIGN GUY 1: Oooh, so young.
FOREIGN GUY 2: Would you like to sit here (points to our booth) or sit here (points to his lap)
ME: (to the server) Right, could you sit us somewhere far from these arrogant, imbecile halfwits please.
SERVER: Certainly. That's VERY rude!
They sat me far from the men but I they still heckled and craned their necks while hooting. Talk about superbastos!!! I prayed they wouldn't come over and just busied myself with the menu. C arrived a few minutes later and I just had to vent. Jeez. Some people seriously do not have manners. Disgusting.
I love the stars in Yauatcha and by this I don't just mean the gorgeous star-like fixtures in the basement restaurant, but the stars on the menu as well. The restaurant is still quite dependable for dim sum after all; no wonder they've retained their Michelin star all these years. They do have big plates and actual dishes too, but I really prefer their dim sum offering and patisserie treats.
Soy sauce and sundries: chili sauce, pickled cucumber, chili oil.
My ultimate Yauatcha favourite has always been their venison puffs (£4.60). I'm happy to report they taste better. The pastry is buttery good and flaky. Each pocket was bursting with sweet, savoury meat which I enjoyed so much, I forgot to take a photo of the filling because I was too busy munching away!
I've never tried their har gau (£5.60) before. The prawns looked as delicate as pearls in the glutinous dim sum wrapper and they just burst with heaps of flavour. The prawn shone here 100%.
We had some roasted duck pumpkin puffs (£5.60) which I wasn't too keen on. It had an interesting texture and I got excited with the pine nuts in the filling. But is there actual pumpkin in there or were they just referring to the shape? Because a) I definitely didn't taste any in he filling and b) they looked more like clementines!
I was curious to try the spinach balls (£5.20). These were stuffed with prawn and cuttlefish served in some sort of black bean sauce. I like that the sauce was quite tame - the seafood flavour was still apparent and there was quite a lot of it delicately enveloped in the spinach leaves.
I ordered spicy pork Szechuan won ton in spicy sauce (£4.90), remembering how Plaid Boy would pour the spicy chili sauce of the same dish over his rice in Din Tai Fung. I wouldn't advise him to do the same in Yauatcha because the sauce was quite bland. The won ton had a lot of filling in it unlike most won tons I've tried here, though!
C wanted cheung fun. I secretly wanted to try the wagyu beef variety but we ended up getting the three-style mushroom cheung fun (£7). I thought the earthy mushroom flavours were slightly overpowered by the sweet soy concoction poured on the plate. I like it enough, but I prefer the ones I've tried before.
Full to the brim, we decided to stay for a round of digestif to calm our bellies but the servers told us that our table needed to be vacated as it was only booked til 8pm. I didn't realise there was still a 2-hour turnover. Really? Oh well.
We still enjoyed our dinner I must say. Food is still good, dependable, and accessible just like an old familiar friend you're happy to have.
Yauatcha15 Broadwick Street London W1F 0DL | Tel: +44(0)20 7494 8888
Average spend pp £25 for dim sum dinner with wine
We ended up having some aperitifs instead at a club nearby. Nothing like a burst of bubbles to cheer us up!
Bellini for me, Rossini for C.
It's been a while since I've had a proper one-to-one with C as we've both been quite busy with work and, uh, life. It was fun to talk about both our journeys since we knew of each other. We talked about how different things were from uni (we were in the same year and served the same student council but I don't think we ever spoke then) to when we started hanging out (we were in long-term relationships very different than our current ones) to where we are. Crikey.
Oh and if anyone asks, I'm wearing MAC Rebel.