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Filtering by Tag: Food

Mei Ume: The Tastes of China and Japan

Alixe Lay

One of the things I love about London is the food, and particularly the variety of International fare you can find in this city. Whatever cuisine you're after, London probably has it. 

Since moving to the big smoke I find myself frequenting Oriental Asian restaurants during the weekend. This time we visited Mei Ume in the Four Seasons Hotel London, who specialise in Chinese and Japanese cuisine. 

Mei Ume, Four Seasons
Four Seasons Hotel, Ten Trinity Square

Residing within a Grade-II listed heritage building, formerly the office for Port of London Authority, the interiors of Mei Ume were inspired by both the east and the west. Upon arrival, I was immediately greeted by the plum blossom glass panel. This is representative of the restaurant's name, which combines the Japanese and Chinese language words for plum blossom. The bar was decorated with lamps in the style of lanterns, wooden and marble tabletops, as well as leather bar stools. In the larger dining room, the unique three-layer gilded triptych on both ends of the room tell the story of a Chinese garden banquet.

Mei Ume
Mei Ume

As it was our first time at Mei Ume, we decided to go with the Signature Tasting Menu which comes with 10 dishes, paired with 3 different wines. 

Amongst the starter dishes, my favourite was the Yellowtail carpaccio with truffle ponzu dressing. The smell of the truffle was very noticeable when the dish was first served, and the taste was very well balanced with subtle hints of spicy, sour and sweet. Within the selection of sashimi and nigiri, my favourite was the mackerel nigiri, so perfectly smoked and it really complements the freshness of the sashimi. What a perfect way to be introduced to what Mei Ume has to offer.

Wakame tofu miso soup

Wakame tofu miso soup

Edamame with salt flakes

Edamame with salt flakes

Yellowtail carpaccio with truffle ponzu dressing

Yellowtail carpaccio with truffle ponzu dressing

Selection of sashimi and nigiri

Selection of sashimi and nigiri

For main course, we were served dishes with both Chinese and Japanese influence. All the mains were brilliant and they remind me very much of the tastes I grew up with. I was particularly impressed with the Wok fried Hereford beef fillet in spicy black pepper sauce; the beef was so tender and every bit of the dish was coated with the well-balanced black pepper sauce.

Stir fried Chinese seasonal vegetable with ginger

Stir fried Chinese seasonal vegetable with ginger

Crispy duck roll

Crispy duck roll

Wok fried Hereford beef fillet in spicy black pepper sauce

Wok fried Hereford beef fillet in spicy black pepper sauce

Wasabi king prawns with orange tobiko

Wasabi king prawns with orange tobiko

Salt and pepper tempura vegetables

Salt and pepper tempura vegetables

Pan fried fillet of Norwegian salmon in yuzu teriyaki sauce

Pan fried fillet of Norwegian salmon in yuzu teriyaki sauce

Finally, the dessert. We've ordered both options on the tasting menu to try them out. The Chocolate moelleux with matcha ice cream was lovely, and I couldn't fault it at all. However as someone who always leans towards the more refreshing and fruity dessert options, I preferred the Mango pudding, coconut crumble, pistachio sponge and kalamansi sorbet. The texture was perfect, and every single element of the dish had a reason to be included. It's probably up there in my top 3 best dessert ever tasted.

Chocolate moelleux with matcha ice cream

Chocolate moelleux with matcha ice cream

Mango pudding, coconut crumble, pistachio sponge and kalamansi sorbet

Mango pudding, coconut crumble, pistachio sponge and kalamansi sorbet

Japanese matcha

Japanese matcha

Mei Ume was a culinary experience like nothing I've ever had before. The service was impeccable, the food was absolutely amazing and I'm truly grateful to have discovered it. If you'd like to have a look at Mei Ume's menu and their story, visit their website here

Mei Ume

Thank you to Mei Ume for the food. All words, images and opinions are my own.


Mei Ume

10 Trinity Square
London EC3N 4AJ

Kettner's Townhouse: A Lunch Rendez-Vous

Alixe Lay

Last week I had the pleasure to visit Kettner's Townhouse in Soho for lunch with my pal, Hal

A part of Soho House, Kettner's Townhouse is hosted in a Grade II listed Georgian building with many of the original designs still intact. The decor in the restaurant features old-styled lamps, marble tables, sofas in classic patterns, velvet armchairs, with soft curtains letting in the most gorgeous light.

Kettner's Townhouse Starters
Kettner's Townhouse Restaurant
Baked Scallop Meuniere
Baked Scallop Meuniere
Wye Valley Asparagus

Knowing that the restaurant specialises in traditional French food, I was very excited to try out the dishes as French is my favourite kind of cuisine. We decided to start with the Baked scallop meuniere, Langoustines, and Wye Valley Asparagus with egg. For main, we picked Truffle roast Banham chicken, and Lake District farmers fillet of beef. To end it on a high, we finished with Strawberry Soufflé, and Crème Brûlée.

I absolutely adored the Baked Scallop; fresh with a little acidity from the lemon, there simply was no better way to start the meal. The langoustines were equally as fresh, though it was a little dull in flavour in comparison to the scallops. My Banham chicken was cooked just right, with the truffle tasting prominent throughout. For my dessert, the custard of the Crème Brûlée was soft, the sweetness and texture were perfect, however the caramelised sugar on top was a little too thick for my liking.

Overall I really enjoyed the meal, it was a very lovely introduction to what Kettner's Townhouse has to offer. The staff were extremely helpful and approachable, making the experience even more pleasurable.

Hal at Kettner's Townhouse
Truffle roast Banham chicken, Lake District farmers fillet of beef
Strawberry souffle, creme brulee
Kettner's Townhouse Restaurant
Aftermath at Kettner's Townhouse

Before we left, we had a quick look into the Champagne Bar, which had a 1920's vibe to it. I particularly loved the colour palette of the room, the scallop shaped leather bar stools against the walnut bar with a marble top. The mosaic tiled floor adds an interesting touch to the place. It was certainly too early for drinks when we visited, but I would love to come back in the future for some cocktails in this cosy bar.

Kettner's Townhouse Champagne Bar
Kettner's Townhouse Champagne Bar
Kettner's Townhouse Champagne Bar
Kettner's Townhouse Champagne Bar

Thank you to Kettner's Townhouse for the food. All words, images and opinions are my own.


Kettner's Townhouse

29 Romilly St, London, W1D 5HP