I’ve been eating at and writing about restaurants in London and beyond for around five years now – but I’ve never actually eaten at a Michelin star establishment before. As you’ll know if you’re a regular reader, I tend to gravitate towards budget eats, diners and street food over fine dining restaurants Because, basically, I can’t afford the latter.
But with more and more restaurants offering an affordable set menu, nowadays we’re able to sample Michelin star dining at a fraction of the price. As part of Bookatable’s Feast on London month, I put on a slightly nicer pair of shoes than usual and popped into Hakkasan Hanway Place, to sample their Taste of Hakkasan menu.
Normally, you might be more likely to associate Chinese and Cantonese flavours with the slightly worn-fronted takeaway down the road rather than fine dining, but Hakkasan’s Hanway Place restaurant shows off a more refined and fancy approach. So much so, it’s got a Michelin star.
An a la carte meal here can work out to be pretty pricey, especially compared to my usual foodie haunts. But with their Taste of Hakkasan menu, you can get yourself three courses and a cocktail for just £38. Er, bargain much? So let’s review…
A Taste Of Hakkasan: Small Eats
I’ve come to the conclusion my life seriously lacks in dim sum. I just want to eat boxes and boxes of the stuff. Especially when it’s as good as Hakkasan’s Dim Sum Selection. I was actually mega impressed by the decent size of the starter – three good-sized pieces of dim sum, with a full duck spring roll sliced in half on the side.
The dim sum came with three different fillings – all fresh and delicious. One featured prawns, one came with crab meat and one with scallops. I’m pretty torn on choosing a favourite, if I’m honest. Maybe the prawns…but it’s a super close call. The duck spring roll was crunchy and full of flavour – although if I’m being SUPER picky, the duck seemed a little dry for my tastes. The rich oyster sauce served on the side managed to alleviate this a little though.
A Taste Of Hakkasan: Signature Cocktails
While I ate my starters, I sipped on a signature cocktail – the Hakka, made with vodka, sake, lychee, lime, coconut and passion fruit. The lychee was definitely the strongest flavour – but as I’m a big fan of it, I wasn’t complaining! I did also have a try of the Green Destiny, which I didn’t rate – it pretty much tasted like watery cucumber.
A Taste Of Hakkasan: Main Dishes
For my main course I chose Sweet and Sour Duke of Berkshire Pork, and OH BOY. This definitely ain’t no greasy sweet and sour you’d order on Just Eat. Not that you’re expecting it to be, obviously. Beautifully sticky and with a perfect balance between the sweet and the sour, this is by far one of the best Asian dishes I’ve ever eaten. Just on the right side of chewy that sweet and sour pork should be, and the meat itself was fresh and beautiful.
I also had a taste of the Stir-fry Black Pepper Rib Eye Beef with Merlot dish, and MORE OH BOY. Soft, tender meat enveloped in the most perfect mix of sauce. The portion may be small, but it’s worth it to sample how good this dish is. The main courses were also served with jasmine rice and a perfectly crunchy asparagus in a creamy sauce, which meant we didn’t go hungry by the end of our mains.
A Taste Of Hakkasan: Desserts
If I thought things couldn’t get better after our main courses, I was pretty wrong. For dessert, we chose two dishes to share. The first being a Jivara Bomb, with praline ice cream wrapped in milk chocolate and hazelnut praline, with rice krispies around the outside. Yep. Rice krispies. They were a unusual but wonderfully welcome touch – the crackling in my mouth combined with delicious flavours was a real dining experience to savour.
We described the Tropical Baked Alaska as tasting ‘a bit like a really posh Solero’. And if you like Soleros and meringue, you’ll love this dish. Served with a slice of glazed pineapple, the soft meringue exterior with a gold leaf topping gives way to a tangy and vibrant tropical sorbet.
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While I don’t imagine the Taste of Hakkasan menu offers the truest Michelin star quality of the more expensive dishes, it was a really delicious dinner – and when looking at the rest of the menu prices, £38 for three courses AND the cocktail is an absolute steal.
Get a taste of Hakkasan: book the offer here!
8 Hanway Pl, Fitzrovia, W1T 1HD
Nearest Tube: Tottenham Court Road
*I received compensation for the cost of the meal from Bookatable in exchange for an honest review.