SquareMeal Review of
Food critic Giles Coren came here for an unexpected post-cricket lunch back in 2009, and his subsequent glowing write-up in The Sunday Times set the ball rolling for this highly rated Chinese restaurant. Luckily, Sojo has outlived the hype, concentrating instead on delivering lip-smackingly delicious food with strong regional overtones. The menu covers a lot of territory, from Cantonese stir-fried chicken with celery or deep-fried whole sea bass in sweet-and-sour sauce via Shanghai-influenced dishes (crispy garlic chicken, prawns coated with salted duck-egg yolk) to fiery Szechuan-style fish slices in sour/spicy cabbage broth or punchy dried tofu with minced beef. Noodles and rice plates are popular at lunchtime, while dim sum brings an excellent selection including Shanghai dumplings, steamed pork ribs in black bean sauce, ‘beef stomach’, chicken buns, congees and so on. Pan-Asian crowd-pleasers such as chicken satay or Thai ‘red’ duck curry might seem somewhat out of place here, but good-natured service ensures that nothing grates in the lacquered and panelled dining room. ‘So’ and ‘Jo’ are the names of the owner’s grand-daughters – hence the moniker.