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|Address:||8 Hanway Place, London W1T 1HD|
|Tel:||020 7927 7000|
|Price: £72.00||Wine: £32.00||Champagne: £74.00|
|Opening Hours:||Mon-Sun 12N-3pm (Sat -4pm Sun -5.45pm) 6-11pm (Thurs-Sat 5.30pm-12:30am)|
This review hasn't been rated yet.
Hakkasan has two faces (three if you include Yauatcha, I think they are part of the same group).
Hanway place – perfect for long lunched with clients/prospective clients who you get on well with and will not “stick to mineral water”. Just finding the place is a measure of success and people will feel equally horrified with the alleyway entrance (behind Sainsbury) then excited with the black suit/incense dark stairs leading down into the dark.
After wrestling with a pretty heavy door you will be greeted, de-coated and seated. It always feels quite exciting (a bit like the introduction of John Travolta in Swordfish) the dark wood, swishy people, music and smell of food all prepare you for a good meal.
They have wooden tables in the main restaurant and an area on the left with bench and chair seating, originally used for drinks/waiting for tables, now it is used full time for eating. There is a fabulous bar that runs the entire back wall and again is visually very beautiful. The whole design ramps up your excitement and I think they have done a fantastic job in designing and keeping the place looking fresh (I think I have gone for over 10 years?).
This is the genius of the place – the cocktails are fantastic – mixed properly/shaved ice and delivered perfectly at the bar and table. The wine list as expected, generous and some “haha look at that one…” before choosing something reasonable.
Starters – just the best dim sum in London (XO scallop dumpling, scallop shumia) /the duck rolls are without doubt the most duck you will ever see outside a duck – dry and fantastic/ the crispy duck salad is beautifully off-set with pomelo (a southeast asia citrus fruit) – the dry crispy fat of the duck against the citrous contrast perfectly)/ another of my favourites salt and pepper squid – dried slivers of garlic with chilli and super fresh quid cooked in clean oil.
Main course – really depends on your tastes – i like hot food so go for the hotter dishes but all are very good. One surprise vegetabel must is the Morning glory – a great side order.
Areas for improvement
So why haven't i given this place a 10 out of 10?
1. The 2 hour time slots (not at lunch which is why i recommended this slot). Everybody likes to feel special and looked after in a restaurant, if you turn up late you do not want to be reminded that you have to give the table back at 10.00pm) this spoils the whole romance of being spoilt! In practice they normally let me overrun but I think the “slots” should be longer.
2. Too cool attitude – some get it right but some get it wrong. As per the other reviews – you do get some attitude from some of the people. It is unfair to say all – most of the people cant do enough to help.
I tend to go at lunch and stay 3 or 4 hours – when you leave blinking in the sunlight (it is all underground) you might be tempted to either carry on drinking or just head home! It is still one of my favourite restaurants but is best enjoyed whilst drinking and relaxing with plenty of time rather than tight schedule and on water!