Gosh, I’m impressed. I’ve had a few really lousy Dongbei (or Northeastern) suppers in London, and until last night had never had a good one. But a friend and I decided to visit Manchurian Legends, a Chinatown newcomer that has won some enthusiastic reviews, and for once it did live up to the hype. We began with homemade ‘mixed chilled vegetable salad’ (家常涼菜), an elegant mix of tofu skin, beanthread noodles, carrot, cucumber, spring onion and coriander, deftly seasoned with chilli oil, vinegar and lashings of garlic; and a couple of perky little fried pastries stuffed with scrambled egg and Chinese chives (韭菜盒子). The potful of sweet potato ‘glass’ noodles with sliced belly pork and pickled mustard greens that followed (酸菜五花肉燉粉條) was delightfully soft and slithery in the mouth, soothing and refreshing at the same time, and we enjoyed another local speciality, thick, lazy ribbons of mung bean pasta on a bed of slivered vegetables, adorned with intensely-flavoured pork strips, chilli and vinegar (東北大拉皮). Continue reading…
Ba Shan, Chinese cuisine, Chinese restaurants, Restaurants, Review / 1 Comment
A couple more reviews of Ba Shan, the new London restaurant in the Bar Shu Group for which I work as consultant. Giles Coren, writing in the Times on Saturday, called it ‘A wonderful addition to my eating life… and a fresh new way to enjoy the most exciting food in the world’. Terry Durack, in the Independent on Sunday, found it ‘immediately charming’, and enjoyed ‘a meal of such distinct and interesting textures and flavours… a gastronomic tour of the provinces of China that Chinatown forgot’.
Time Out published a glowing review of Ba Shan, the latest restaurant in the Bar Shu Group, last week – five out of six stars!
And Richard Vines, writing on Bloomberg.com, called it ‘the most exciting new Chinese restaurant I’ve tried in London since Bar Shu three years ago’.
I have to say that I’m seriously addicted to the guo tie (pot-stickers) and the dumplings in chilli oil sauce.
The new restaurant, Ba Shan, was the subject of Fay Maschler’s main review in the Evening Standard on Wednesday. And there’s already a review up on Time Out’s website, which mentions ‘the exquisite food and impossibly cheery service‘ – we understand that it will appear in the magazine itself the week after next. It was a blogger, however, who had the first word on the new restaurant, visiting it even before the sign had been put up outside!
There was a lovely review of my latest book last week, as part of a podcast from Ithaca, New York. The review comes some way into the programme – about 45 minutes. The reviewer said it ‘completely changed a lot of my perceptions… as well as explaining how we can understand it better, not just the history but the philosophy and the cultural things that surround it… This is a really cool book, it completely explained Chinese cuisine to me.’