Following the recent arrival of a friend’s baby, it was time for a me and another pal to have a catch up and finally meet the little fella.
My friend who knows the owner, recommended Yuu Kitchen in Aldgate East – not a part of town I know very well (Yuu means superior by the way)
The place is currently number one on Tripadvisor. That’s first out of 17,814 eateries in London. Wow.
Situated on a nondescript stretch of the Commercial Road, I was intrigued to try such a highly lauded place – which incidentally has only been open since October.
Owners are head chef Jon de Villa (ex Nobu) and manager Stephen Lowe (ICEBAR) – two Aussie friends with clearly some impressive experience behind them.
The vibe is casual with a large open plan kitchen housing two Big Green Eggs for some of the cooking.
Bird cages hang from the ceiling and manga style artwork commissioned especially for the restaurant by a Hong Kong based artist, adorn the walls.
Food hails from South East Asia and the Pacific Rim – think Thailand, Vietnam, the Philippines, Australia and Japan. Small plates are on offer so order lots to share or pick a few for yourself.
In no particular order the three of us ordered: scallop, prawn and chive dumplings, salt and pepper calamari, baby back ribs, twice cooked 7up braised pork Bao, soy and buttermilk chicken Bao and dumplings with butternut and sweetcorn.
The food is delicious – beautifully presented, super fresh and generous portions. There’s some great veggie options too for the non meat eaters. Dishes are £4.50 upwards so provide a reasonably priced meal (depending on how much you order of course)
Desserts come highly recommended so with the inability of being able to choose – manager Stephen brings us a selection.
An insanely good selection of homemade ice creams accompany our puddings: apple caramel, dulce de leche, pistachio, and salted caramel.
Wine, beer and fizz are all available on tap. We picked a carafe of Frizzante which totally hit the spot. There’s also sake and cocktails for those feeling a bit more adventurous.
Despite being busy by the time we leave the restaurant had a serene vibe about it. I would imagine though on an evening when full to capacity the atmosphere will ramp up somewhat.
Service was attentive and friendly – I couldn’t fault it in fact.
I really loved this place – something a bit different and nice and relaxed. If you’re venturing east I highly recommend a visit.