JC Eats: Devouring Pan-Asian at Chi Kitchen

October 2, 2016

Oh hey, it’s been ages since a good old food post. But I am back with a good one let me tell you. Asian food is for sure one of my absolute all time favourites – Japanese with a whole load of sushi, and Thai with a whole load of coriander are definitely up at the top. So when I got invited down to Chi Kitchen, I immediately did a menu hunt. As I do with pretty much every meal out, I mean most of my day is spent thinking about what the next thing I’m going to eat. Just me? Okay. And man, once I saw it I was excited!

On Saturday night, I put on my smart dress and we headed into central. Chi Kitchen is actually nestled in the back of Debenhams on Oxford Street, following the trend of more restaurants entering department stores. However, don’t worry it is closed off from the main store and has a door to street level so you definitely feel like you’re in a restaurant. The decor itself is lovely, lots of wooden beams, big globe bulbs and an open kitchen so you can see the chefs working away.

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One of the highlights of the night was definitely the staff, they were totally amazing and made our experience really enjoyable. Just the right amount of making sure we are okay without being overbearing, plus their suggestions of what we should try off the menu were spot on.

We started with cocktails (of course), the three we had were all great – full of flavour, nice and juicy and a good size for all of them. I hate ordering a cocktail and having it arrive and be the size of a thimble so I was very glad this was not the case. For starter, of course, we had to start with sushi! We ordered the samurai platter to share which included prawn tempura roll, crab roll, tuna roll, salmon sashimi and tuna sashimi. The sushi itself was fabulous – I’m reeeeally picky with sushi after having it so much in New Zealand so I tend not to order it too often in the UK but I was so glad I did. The fish itself was so fresh, it exuded flavour and the accompanying sauces complimented perfectly. They were all topped with little fish roe too which gives that satisfying texture.

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Sam, my vegetarian bestie, also went for the vegetable roll which she really enjoyed – it was a very generous portion! The menu itself was rather light on vegetarian options which was one of the only downsides of the night, but they did whip up some veggie spring rolls to go along side which was greatly appreciated – another attribute of the fab staff throughout the evening.

Alongside the sushi we also had their signature popcorn shrimp, which is deep fried in tempura and covered in a wasabi mayo. Wasabi and mayo are like two of my favourite food (all about the wasabi peas) and these were SO good. Crispy outer, soft prawn inside and all covered in a tangy mayo on top. Paul, who is not the biggest fan of prawns even ate and loved them, they were that good.

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By this point, not gonna lie, I was already getting full. But I was so ready for the main course. The menu at Chi Kitchen is split into small and big plates, so designed for you to share – always my favourite as it means I get to try all the different things! We started with the signature steak – the Korean steak, sirloin steak with Bulgogi sauce and on top of a chive mash. The steak itself was melt in the mouth, cooked to just the right point. I’ve not had much korean so really enjoyed the creamy sauce along side.

My favourite dish of the evening was the sea bass with chilli and lime – the sea bass itself was cooked perfectly, soft but still holding texture. The sauce was amazing – full of flavour with lemongrass and garlic. It had just the right amount of heat alongside too – I pretty much finished the whole thing myself! Sam went for the miso aubergine which she really enjoyed, I mean aubergine is one of my fave vegetables and the miso added a great contrast. She had egg fried rice alongside which she even named her favourite egg fried rice ever, quite the claim!

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For dessert, yes, we still managed dessert after all of the food. I was seriously struggling by this point but, you know, when sugar calls your name, you gotta go there! We went for three of the classics, firstly the chocolate sphere. I’ve seen spheres on so many peoples blogs but never had one myself so I was super excited when I saw the hot chocolate sauce being poured on top. It was oh so chocolately and full of butterscotch, so bad but so good. The mango creme brulee actually ended up being my favourite though – full of mango flavour but really light, the mango sorbet on the side was lovely and refreshing. My least favourite of the three was the passionfruit cheesecake as it was just a little bit too strong on the passionfruit flavour for me!

Overall, we had a really enjoyable time at Chi Kitchen, and it’s somewhere I’d definitely go back to. It is something that is hidden away so be sure to hunt it out and you won’t be disappointed.

What’s your fave Asian cuisine?

*My meal was complimentary, but of course, all opinions are my own! 

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