Kai – Mayfair

I have been keen to try out this Michelin starred restaurant for a while, I am a lover of Chinese food however the curiosity kicked in when I was searching on Opentable (previously Toptable) and found the restaurant.

I was lucky to get taken there and it looked pretty simple to me, in terms of interior-wise, I entered the restaurant where the entrance had apples on the walls either for decoration or to clear our palette (the sense). There are some artistic wall paintings and the restaurant is split between the ground floor and basement and there are strong use of mirrors and classic decorations all around, it gave me a feeling of the trendy modern. This is very Mayfair-like and by far different than Chinatown restaurants.

No. 33

As it had received a star I would be expecting there to be exciting dishes with fancy names and ingredients, my partner looked at the menu and pointed out this particular dish which I am sure many orientals and Chinese dish lovers would recognize – the Special Fried Rice, known as ‘No. 33’ which is their version of the dish but this particular dish is served with the ultimate luxury of thinly sliced Kagoshima Wagyu.

To me, it looked like some nigiri rolls from a Japanese restaurant, however it was very nice, I found it a little salty though however the Kagoshima Wagyu were very nice indeed, although I am unsure on whether it was worth the £59.

Roasted Peking Duck

This is a classic Chinese dish with the pancakes, cucumber, spring onion and the sweet ‘duck sauce’. I have had much  better pancakes in a non-Michelin starred restaurant however Kai’s version has their signature chilli sambal made with red chilies, shallots and yellow bean. It is semi authentic, in experience-wise as in Beijing and many restaurants in Hong Kong they will show you the duck as a whole and slicing the pieces right before your eyes, however they only showed us the whole duck and slice it in the kitchen.

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Sweet and sour Pork

I am a loyal fan of the comfort food, sweet and sour pork. In fact I always order it in Hong Kong, it varies from each restaurant and traditions however their version has a ot more flavor in the pork and I do enjoy the melon cupping the dish.

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Wasabi Prawns

A simple dish made with milk wasabi mayonnaise, mango and basil seeds. I like this dish as it was full of flavor and the wasabi didn’t coat the taste of the prawns.

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Mo-Po’ Spicy aubergines and home-made tofu
Kai’s version was created by chef Chen which was handed down from the 19th century, it is a vegetarian dish with a spicy Szechuan dish of home-made  bean curd and aubergines. I like how the tofu was rightfully proportioned in size and the sauce wasn’t as spicy as I had hope it to be but it was full of flavor and I like the taste of aubergine with the tofu.
Chilean Sea Bass and spicy miso
This is their Chilean sea bass dish in a light miso broth with hints of the Szechuan spiciness, it was pleasant and however I didn’t taste the spiciness in the dish the way my partner did, it could do with some extra spiciness flavor in my opinion.
Here are some extra dishes we had during the meal.
Desserts
We manage to have quite a lot of deserts, this was what it looked like when the waiter bought the desserts to us.
Durian & vanilla soufflé, salted caramel
Yes you’ve read right, my first time having a Durian (and Vanilla) soufflé, it had durian tuile and with salted caramel  sauce poured inside (if you like the mix). It was delicious, I will definately order this dessert again if I am  back. It didn’t smell awful as many durian-dislikers would usually say and the mixture of bitter and sweet taste goes really well.

Valrhona chocolate fondant with pistachio

This Iranian green pistachio ice cream  is rolled in pistachio crumbs, cocoa crisp with chocolate fondant. The chocolate fondant didn’t taste sickly however I didn’t enjoy the pistachio ice cream on this occasion, not too sure why but the taste didn’t taste how I would thought out to be.

The Petit Fours

The waiter spoke quite fast and I didn’t catch all the little cakes however one was chocolate, coconut and pistachios and I am unsure of the three but I too photos from both sides and it looks very cute.

What made the meal experience so special was not only the food was delicious (and with some interesting ingredients) but the service was really good. I ordered a Silver Needle tea and had the waiter coming over a number of times to top up my tea, I am used to people on the same table to top up my cup or I do it myself but knowing I am being looked after in such a way was really good. They were very polite and patient and know their drinks and dishes well.

This restaurant would suit those who are looking for an alternative Chinese restaurant for dinner, definitely a “pay-day” meal or if you are looking to spoil yourself or a loved one.

 

Verdict:

Service: 5/5
Atmosphere: 4/5
Food: 3/5

Find Kai Mayfair:

 

65 South Audley Street, London, W1K 2QU.

 

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