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The Hakkasan group’s first foray into the City (Chrysan) may have ended prematurely, but HKK looks as if it’s here to stay – with a Michelin star now under its belt. The serene dining room is done
out in ‘subdued’ grey, brown and cream tones, allowing diners to focus on the food devised by Hakkasan’s executive chef Tong Chee Hwee. Come here in the evening, and you’re obliged to have the full
15-course tasting menu unless you’re in a large group, but portions are bite-sized and service is swift. Highlights include an intense poulet de Bresse puff, deep-fried Australian green abalone in
‘royal’ sauce, lobster in black truffle sauce with mooli cake and the show-stopping Peking duck (roasted over cherry wood). Lunchtime visitors have much more choice and flexibility – not to mention
a less ‘staggering’ bill. ‘Impeccable’ service and thoughtful wine flights complete one of the most seductive packages in the City.
Hakkasan Group’s wine lists share the same innovative overall structure, with wines separated by quirky categories, like ‘new classics: genius without a château’, or ‘blends: the art of the winemaker’. All have a superlative range of wines, with a heartening willingness to go off the beaten track, as well as reassure diners with a strong selection of Burgundy. An object lesson in professionalism and imagination.
There’s not a whole lot I can write about my recent visit to HKK for a taste of its five course duck lunch menu without my review coming across as one big gloat about how much I enjoyed it.Besides, so much of what I loved about the experience was getting to sit back and allow Chef Tong Chee Hwee, sommelier Miguel Hernandez and all the cordial HKK staff encountered to provide their deliberate best to ensure I had an exquisite meal. The months old HKK is a brilliant extension of the Hakkasan brand and welcome addition to another rather desolate stretch of ambiguous hinterland straddling the professional City and hipster Shoreditch...
More from Tiki Chris »
HKK shows what Chinese fine dining can be; it’s as simple as that. Although it’s clearly been created for City entertaining, don’t let that put you off if you’re intrigued to go there for a meal with friends. Expectations are perfectly set at a *1 star level, from the welcome, to the apéritifs, to the subtle yet chic decor – and of course the cuisine.If you want the best out of your experience, you should go for one of the many set menus. Even someone used to ordering Chinese food will find it difficult to recreate HKK’s sumptuous offer from the à la carte menu. Also, rather than have wine with your meal, perhaps opt for a fine white tea to cut through the rich elements of the meal without giving you the distinct flavour of wine...
More from vialaporte »
Bespoke Cantonese fine dining from the Hakkasan Group” is the claim from HKK, the second Hakkasan venture to open in The City this year. Does it deliver? Most definitely!
More from @wilkes888 - London based Food & Drink-o-phile »
Hakkasan is now a mini global empire of glitzy fine dining Chinese restaurants and lounges, but it all started with just one restaurant, the original Hakkasan in Hanway Place, off Oxford street. When it opened in 2001, a “glamorous night out” and “going for a Chinese” were concepts with little or no overlap but, overnight, Hakkasan changed the perception of Chinese restaurants in London and the UK. Offering lavishly designed, glitzy interiors, a cool lounge bar, and soon-to-be Michelin starred high end Chinese food, it attracted both foodies and fashionistas, rapidly becoming one of the venues of choice to impress a date (just as Hugh Grant did there in the film “About a Boy”,) With such a winning formula, it was no surprise that another London restaurant was opened in Mayfair, with further openings around the world in New York, Mumbai, Dubai, Shanghai etc...
More from Food and other matters of interest »
I’ve always been sceptical of the idea of Chinese fine dining…until I set foot in HKK. The food is divine, the attention to detail mesmerising and the service spot on. My current favourite place to have elaborate and lush weekend Chinese lunch (although I still like Yauatcha and Hutong a lot)...
More from FoodiesOnTheProwl FoodiesOnTheProwl »
HKK is a fine dining restaurant from the Hakkasan Group overseen by Chef Tong Chee Hwee through whom Hakkasan earned its Michelin Star back in Alan Yau's day. Tong Chee Hwee is a supremely talented chef who has put together a 15 course tasting menu based on the traditions of Chinese banqueting. HKK also offers a la carte during lunches, but evenings are the choice of the tasting and vegetarian tasting menus only. The is a matching wine flight for each menu, as well as an original idea, an orchard flight, offering non-alcoholic fruit juice cocktails to match, which I was quite excited to try.The first drink was brought to the table, 1724 tonic water poured over saffron, with a perfume bottle atomiser adding grapefruit essence. The water went a lovely golden colour from the saffron, and had a good taste of grapefruit. An excellent start.Appetisers started with a delicious Bai hua prawn for me, a prawn in a crisp batter with a sweet goji berry sauce and some roasted pine nuts. Vegetarian option was Suan-tian-ku-la tomato, a delightful little yellow cherry tomato, hollowed out and filled with pine nuts and mushroom. Following this an excellent cold dish, drunken chicken. This was Poulet de Bresse marinaded in 20 year old Gu-yue-long-shan rice wine and served on a bed of jelly fish. Jelly fish was a lovely texture, slippery, crunchy and gelatinous with a subtle ocean taste but not a distinct flavour. This was a lot more delicate than jelly fish I've had previously. The chicken itself was excellent, the use of Poulet de Bresse apparent. My wife had a delicate and visually stunning salad of lotus roots, cloud ear (a gelatinous fungus) and lily bulb served in a extremely fine lacy cradle of lotus root.Next up was the astonishing Peking duck. For couples and larger tables the duck is prepared in the middle of the room, divided up into portions with deft slices of a cleaver by the chef. First you are recommended to eat the portion of skin, this is as good as it gets, firstly so translucent you can see through it, crisp, rich without being overpoweringly fatty, incredible depth of flavour. This is dipped in sauce and some sugar, just enough sweetness and acidity to cut through the remaining fat. Next, a portion of breast with skin attached is eaten with some chili infused salad. Finally a pancake with onion, sauce, cucumber and some sesame seeds. Without doubt the best roast duck I've ever had both in London and in my travels in the Far East. Vegetarians were not forgotten with an innovative alternative on offer, a soft pancake was to be dabbed with a bit of plum sauce, onto which was placed a slice of truffle, spring onion, cucumber, topping this a crisp slice of beancurd. Following this a soup of Poulet De Bresse was presented with a spoon heaped with some ginseng, chrysanthemum petals and goji berries. The spoon added some sweet elements to a very well flavoured chicken soup which also contained some silken bean curd. The vegetarian soup was a hot and sour soup with similar additions, and excellent, pungent and intense soup. The drink to match these courses was a refreshing blend of grapefruit, red pepper, peach and elderflowerFollowing this, the much talked about Dim Sum Trilogy. 3 dim sum along with a paint brush to coat the dim sum with a sweet soy sauce. The lobster scallop and caviar dumpling was delicious, as was the high technical layered pastry and daikon. The vegetarian version included a fabulous truffled mushroom dumpling, and a vibrant and fresh edmame dumpling. Stir fry of gai-lan, shimeji mushroom and lily bulb in XO sauce took me back to holidays in the Far East, I'd forgotten about XO sauce and the flavour from the dried scallop, and had a moment where it took me back to some fond memories of meals in Singapore and Penang, the gai-lan was superb, cooked perfectly. For my wife, steamed luffa melon, very similar to cucumber as they are from the same family, but lifted by aubergine and chili. I then had an excellent lobster noodle dish, very tender lobster with homemade glass noodles and a yellow bean sauce. The vegetarian option was extremely good, vegetarian chicken, with a texture very similar to chicken was mixed with soy beans in a black pepper sauce and baked in a hollowed out red onion. This was intensely savoury and had captured some of the flavours and tastes I would associate with caramelization and maillard reactions from roasting meats whilst being a vegetarian dish, very clever stuff.A palate cleanser of hot and crispy taro milk cake and jelly of perfumed osmanthus flower followed, provided with Da-Hong-Pao tea, a rare variation of wuyi oolong held in very high regard in Chinese culture worked perfectly, preparing us for the next round of dishes.The next drink was a superb melon, celery and red pepper blend, the best of the night. The first main was sea bass on mushrooms with a pickled chili sauce and ginger. The sea bass was cooked perfectly and was an excellent refined version of sea bass with ginger I usually have. The vegetarian option was four treasure wrap, a mushroom, carrot, asparagus and daikon wrapped in bamboo pith and in spicy sha cha sauce. Following this two hot clay pots, one with pork belly, which was basically the best spare ribs I've ever had, an astonishingly good pork dish. My wifes pot was a homemade pumpkin tofu, soft and delicate in great tasting sauce.The following drink was a nice blend of tamarillo, basil, cinnamon pineapple and saffron. One of the trinity of Chinese fine dining arrived next for me, abalone. Australian green abalone was presented in an abalone shell, and came with a rice wine truffle sauce and crispy cigar of truffled pastry. The abalone was excellent, soft and tender but with a decent bite and held flavour even with a very strong truffle rice wine sauce. The vegetarian course was one of my wifes favourites, a large morel, stuffed and with a tempura batter was presented on a baby pak choi. This was an excellent morel, with a perfectly cooked pak choi. The sha cha sauce was savoury and spicy and matched the vegetables really well. The final main course was jasmine tea smoked Wagyu beef and water chestnuts. The beef was soft as butter, very rich and fatty but with excellent flavour. The water chestnuts were turned and provided some much needed balance with richness of the beef. These came on a paper thin leaf of sweet potato and with some sticky, glutinous rice and a few deep fried jasmine tea leaves. The vegetarian version was similar, but with vegetarian duck, most likely wheat gluten although resembled duck breast in looks unlike any mock duck I've seen before. The jasmine notes in these dishes were an excellent touch.The dessert drink was a fabulous ginger, papaya, apple and eucalyptus, the eucalyptus finely judged offering flavour without overpowering. First dessert was a disc of mandarin jelly, topped with a fantastic pandan sorbet, I absolutely love pandan and this went really well with with well flavoured mandarin jelly. The next dessert was a cylinder of some excellent fresh pineapple, covered in angel hair pastry and fried, with some gorgeous salted lime fruit and jelly pieces, the acidity of these elements matching very well with a good vanilla ice cream.After this the sous chef, as head chef was not in that evening, and one of the managers came to the table and asked us if we enjoyed it and what our favourite dishes were. A nice touch was a copy of the menu and drinks for each of us stamped with the chop of Tong Hwee Chee. Petit four were a stick of peanut chocolate brittle, a mandarin jelly, an unusual jasmine ganache andcreamy and chewy macaron which I had with a decent filter coffee, and my wife with mint tea. The bill came to just over Â£260.HKK provided one of the best Chinese meals I've ever had, with some stand out dishes I'll remember for a long time and every course of excellence, all featuring clever balance across the flavour types so favoured in Chinese cooking but with the addition of some western ingredients, modern cooking methods and careful sourcing. I loved the orchard flight, preferring this option to wine and all matched the dishes perfectly. The vegetarian tasting menu is made up of innovative and exciting dishes, and would be recommended for any vegetarian who wants something different and wants the same quality and variety that the non-vegetarian menu's provide.Bai hua PrawnSuan-tian-ku-la tomato20 years Gu-yue-long-shan drunken chicken and jellyfish.Lotus root, cloud ear and lily bulb salad.Cherry wood roasted Peking Duck.Vegetarian crispy bean curd with truffle.Poulet de Bresse and ginseng soup with silken bean curd.Hot and sour soup with silken bean curd.Dim Sum Trilogy.Vegetarian Dim Sum Trilogy.Gai-lan, shimeji mushroom and lily bulb in XO sauce.Steamed luffa melon and aubergine.Lobster with pan mee.Stir fried vegetarian chicken with black pepper sauce in baked onion.Osmanthus flower jelly, taro milk cake.Wild Scottish Sea bass with pickled chili sauce.Four treasure with bamboo pith wrap.Toban of Rhug Farm pork belly.Toban of homemade pumpkin tofu.Australian Green Abalone in truffle rice wine sauce.Morel mushroom with sha cha sauce.Jasmine tea smoked Wagyu beef and water chestnut.Vegetarian duck with water chestnut.Mandarin jelly, pandan sorbet, jasmine meringue.Pineapple fritter, salted lime jelly, vanilla ice cream.
More from Edesia Is Hungry - Food of the Gods »
I MUST share with you the culinary wonder that is HKK restaurant, the new East London outpost of the Hakkasan Ltd. group in Broadgate West, near Bishopsgate. We went for the 15- courses tasting menu (there is also an 8-courses option); if £95 is not exactly cheap (it certainly isn’t for me), it is still a bargain compared to the a’ la carte prices and for the quality and quantity of food, the offering at HKK restaurant it didn’t feel extortionate...
More from The F World »
HKK is a fine dining Chinese restaurant which specialises in seasonal tasting menus and it’s owned by the Hakkasan group – they own Hakkasan, Sake no Hana and Yauatcha. It’s based in a quiet part of Shoreditch – on our Saturday evening visit there was not a soul to be seen and you’d easily walk past it as it looks like an office block. Inside however was a beautiful and serene space which was every bit as elegant as you might wish for...
More from Samphire and Salsify »
Hakkasan was one of the restaurants that helped foster the idea that Chinese food in London wasn’t just greasy take away fare. HKK is a new City spin-off of the Soho original, but with an emphasis on expensive tasting menus that befits its location in the shadow of capitalism’s gleaming towers.If you’re expecting the handsome dark woods and aromatic scents of Alan Yau’s other restaurants, then HKK’s surprisingly plain, understated decor will be a disappointment. The generally generic grey glossy gleam is designed to avoid offending the homogenous, monochrome, easily startled suits that prowl the nearby streets. The only real hint of character is the usual flower bulb-shaped ceiling fixtures in the centre of the room...
More from The Picky Glutton »
First things up, the decor. This was a key component of the experience at the other venues, particularly at Hanway Place, still I think the most fantastic use of space (it used to be an underground warehouse) in London. HKK is certainly more subdued and more professional. The target audience seems to be high powered local business types. Personally, I would say that the food is more the focus of the attention here than at the other branches...
More from Fd Over LDN »
HKK’s elegant and spacious private dining room is ideal for private business meals or social events and can host up to 14 guests. The space – which features traditional hand-painted Chinese wallpaper and a blue-tinted sliding glass door for privacy – offers direct views into the restaurant kitchen, where diners can see the Peking duck oven. All tasting menus from the restaurant (including the restaurant’s signature Peking duck, which is carved in front of diners by the chef), are available in the private room.
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