A special day means we had to visit a special location so we went to Yauatcha, considered one of the best dim sum places in London. I have always wanted to go there but was slightly put off by the high price tag but seeing it was a "special day" I guess there was an excuse to shelf out. As I'm not a connoisseur in any sense every time I go to a restaurant I do extensive research into the place and felt a bit worried when many critics panned the service as being lacklustre and verging on rude however nothing of the sort seemed evident on our visit, in fact the service was one of the highlights of the meal! Upon arrival the wait staff seemed friendly and inviting and this wasn't any different once seated, maybe there is a difference when visiting at lunch. All the staff serving us were friendly and smiley, only the non-asian male staff seemed a bit moody. The decor is quite nice but nothing to leave you mesmerised, love the shear blue walls, however I'm still not use to the almost communal seating plan akin to Wagamama and Cha Cha Moon, both also Alan Yau's creations. The low seating was also slightly awkward at first. The closeness of the tables were a bit distracting as fellow customers seemed to look me up and down quite often! I was expecting that from the staff after reading extensive reviews, or maybe it's because I was eating the jasmine ribs which smothered me in sauce half the time.
Ok so onto my order, this time with my trusty father on hand. We ordered the Scallop Shui Mai, Har Gau, Char Siu Buns, Shanghai Siew Long Bun, Jasmine Tea Smoked Organic Ribs and Prawn Cheung Fun. I didn't realise at first but I would be devouring quite a lot of prawns in the process!
The Scallop Shui Mai was very pretty but it wasn't that special in my opinion. The scallop atop the normal shui mai filling didn't really make it any better for me, yes the ingredients were of a better class to normal shui mai but I preferred the ones at Princess Garden and they smelt a bit weird. The Har Gau was nice, I don't normally eat har gau but I ordered this because of special mentions in a lot of blogs, however the skin stuck on the steamer as I couldn't dislodge the dim sum without ripping it to shreds. The Char Siu Buns were lovely, very fluffy and a nice filling. The Siew Long Bao was ok, the skin was pretty average, it didn't hold the ingredients at all and was thick at the top but the ingredients inside were perfect, second to none in London. The Jasmine Tea Smoked ribs were a slight letdown, as lovely as they were they were a tad too sweet and didn't really taste of Jasmine Tea. The prawn cheung fun was ok, nothing special really, it was well made but not well made enough to slither in my tongue. Oh we also ordered Wuyi Shan Shui Xian which tasted a bit like English tea on the first sip!
Overall it was a lovely lunch that I enjoyed, the food was above average in general but there wasn't anything that would necessarily draw me back there just to eat it. Our bill came up to £49.20, expensive yes but not pocket busting expensive, meaning I would consider going back there but only for special occasions considering you can get dim sum just as good at a cheaper price at places like Pearl Liang and Princess Garden.
My father's take: Ok but a bit too sweet, catering for the British.