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Friday 22 February 2019

Hakkasan's CNY Year of the Pig Menu - Reviewed

Name: Hakkasan Hanway

Where:  Hakkasan, 8 Hanway Place, London W1T 1HD, https://hakkasan.com/locations/hakkasan-hanway-place/

Cost: The Year of the Pig Chinese New Year menu is priced at £88 per person. 

About: To celebrate the Year of the Pig, Hakkasan Hanway Place is offering a Chinese New Year set banquet, available only until Sunday 24th February. 

What We Ate: The menu kicked off with a salad of Peking duck with crispy bean curd and mango - this had perfectly crisp duck skin, candied orange peel, mixed greens, shredded chilli strands and dragon fruit.  Fresh, with great acidity, and wonderfully sweet and fatty duck morsels, this was a great start to the meal.

A dim sum duo followed - a bravura display of culinary skill, with seafood jian dui coated in white sesame seeds, and a fab shacha chicken puff - an ingenious, feather-light pastry case which opens up in segments like a savoury chocolate orange, to reveal a core of chicken with a savoury Fujian shacha sauce made from soybean oil, garlic, shallots, chillies, brill and dried shrimp.

The superior soup with Chilean seabass, goji berries and rings of bamboo pith had a well flavoured broth perfumed with chrysanthemum petals and ginko nut, and dainty cubes of seabass and yam.

Wok-fried lobster with spinach, lily bulb and lotus seeds was fresh, succulent and generous.

The Rhug Estate lamb had tender nuggets of fillet, served with shiitake mushrooms and rice cakes, in a spicy sauce fragrant with ginger, spring onion and chilli peppers.

Crispy suckling pig, with skin as crisp as caramel, was served atop sticky glutinous brown rice with a delectable pomegranate foam.

The side dish of stir-fried pak choi with meaty eryngii (king mushroom) and the rare but revered pioppini (aka the highly prized matsutake mushroom) was nothing short of outstanding.

Dessert was a "wealth pot", signifying favourable financial auguries for the New Year.  The pot was of dark chocolate, filled with mandarin granita and a crunchy hazelnut and chocolate ice cream.

The patisserie at Hakkasan is justly renowned, and the Fortune Macaron did not disappoint - with a crisp crust and a light, slightly chewy interior and a floral cream centre, this was an understated gem to bring the meal to a fitting end.

What We Drank: We started with a Liao Liao cocktail - a refreshing blend of Ketel One vodka, with rosella, oloroso sherry, lemon, kumquat and plum bitters.

With our meal, we shared a bottle of Albariño Abadia De San Campio, Terras Gauda, 2017 (£47). From Rias Baixas, this has pineapple and tropical fruit flavours, refreshing citrus acidity and a long finish, expertly recommended by Deputy Head Sommelier, Asturian-born Noelia Calleja.

Likes: Highlights for me were the ingenious shacha chicken puff, the lobster, the Rhug Estate lamb fillet, and the magnificent matsutake and eryngii mushroom dish. 

Dislikes: None
Verdict: If you have not yet celebrated the 2019 Chinese New Year of the Pig, hurry along to Hakkasan Hanway Place for this CNY banquet, which ends on 24th February 2019.  For me, its their best CNY menu yet. Very highly recommended!

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