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It may lack the backstreet thrills of the Hanway Place original, but in all other respects this Mayfair sibling is worthy of the Hakkasan name: the glossy ground-floor space is brilliant for dim-sum lunches, while the sultry blue-lit basement drips late-night glamour and nightclub vibes. The food is "consistent" and "absolutely delicious", from refined versions of takeaway favourites to unashamedly luxurious specialities: salt and pepper squid is crisp and juicy; prawn toast comes wrapped around foie gras, and pipa duck is one of the most succulent roast birds you'll ever taste. For every conventional idea, there's something less familiar – perhaps lamb salad with spicy peanut dressing or steamed langoustine wrapped in glass vermicelli. To drink, cocktails are sexily good and a ground-breaking wine list takes a revelatory approach to food-matching. Service can sometimes be more ornamental than useful – though senior staff are on the ball. Ultimately, we agree with readers who say this "Chinese gem" is just about perfect.
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.
Ok, Alan Yau. I get it. I take back all my former hesitations about selecting Hakkasan as my birthday dinner choice. You win. The food is utterly incredible. The atmosphere is ... meh ... but the food. Oh, the food. Can one even refer to it as food? I think it's deserving of a term that denotes a higher form of praise.Just last week, as I was walking past Les Trois Garcons on my way back from the launch party for Hair: Fashion and Fantasy, I looked inside and thought, maybe I should come here instead for dinner on my birthday, instead of Hakkasan Mayfair. Who needs pretentious Chinese food when you could...
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This week our friends Christa and Candy are over from Cape Town (all nicely alliterative) so we treated ourselves to dinner at Hakkasan. The first one of this now global restaurant brand was in Hanway Place behind the back of Tottenham Court Road Station and it opened in 2001. I remember going to try this new style of contemporary Cantonese Chinese food with great excitement.
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Hakkasan Mayfair’s intimate and luxurious private dining room caters for formal and informal occasions, and can be used for both sit-down dinners and canapé receptions for up to 14 seated guests. Please note: hiring this space requires a pre-agreed minimum spend.
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