Glam but chill Taiwanese by the peeps behind Bao
Taiwanese | RR | £££
Xu like bao is legit, it’s got style AND substance. A sophisticated space with no trace of snootiness; it’s bringing old school glamour into a cool modern context. Spinning out banging plates like the chicken wing with sanpei sauce and caviar and the ‘drop egg crab’, all delivered with happy vibes. In sum, the food is on point, the space is on point and the service is on point. Would I go back? Without a damn question.
BASIC OR BOUGIE? Ba-Bou
SERVICE IS Sleek, Casual, V. Friendly
TRY The Chilli Egg Drop Crab
GOOD FOR Spesh Times, Dates
GROUPS Up to 8 ppl
THE FULL SHEBANG
Xu is on Rupert Street, right next door to the Palomar, where we had dessert after (not brilliant FYI but such a fun vibe – keen to try the savoury stuff which people rave about).
They describe the space as a ‘cinematic interpretation of 1930’s Taipei – I’ve never been (lol) so can’t verify that – what I do know as that it looks sleek AF. It’s wonderfully glamorous but in a down to earth, very accessible way.
Image Credit: Wallpaper
Greens, blush pink and dark wood permeate the space imbuing it with a luxe feel but then little details like the illustrations on the menu and on prints on the walls upstairs bring a relaxed, fun and charming edge. It’s a two level space with the tea bar downstairs and the cocktail bar upstairs. My favourite detail is probably the one man dining table upstairs because controversially I quite like dining by myself (at lunchtime).
FOOD & SERVICE
Bao is one of the most hyped restaurants in London, so it’s little surprise that when they announced they were opening up a new restaurant with a chic 1930s style Taiwanese tea house aesthetic that people got excited, myself included. Xu did not disappoint both on the aesthetic and food front.
We kicked things off with a cocktail to limber us up; most are tea infused. I opted for the Bei Gang (kombu rum, manzanila, honey, Lime and wheat grass) which was similar to a daiquiri and was absolutely superb
We ordered a few snacks to start with. First up was the Cuttlefish Toast, a take on the sesame prawn toast which came with whipped cod roe (kinda like taramasalata) – a nice enough dish but not wow.
I wouldn’t rush to order it again whereas I would the Chicken Wing…