I thought the winter coat was about to hide away for the spring, but Saturday proved me wrong. But with the chilly temps and spitting rain, it turned out to be the perfect day to while away an afternoon in the cosy, dimly-lit warmth of E&O in Notting Hill, sipping on cocktails while plate after plate of delicious Asian food arrived at our table.
Jorge kicked it off with a Clover Club (bombay sapphire, lemon juice, egg white, raspberry) and I went for the Lychee Martini (finlandia vodka, lychee liqueur, lemon, lychee juice).
We decided to be a bit adventurous and leave our order up to Kristina, the lovely manager, to bring us her favourite food from the menu rather than choose our own. It took the pressure off of choosing and we wen’t disappointed!
The prawn and chive dumplings arrived first and we nodded at each other in approval while chomping away. These were possibly my favourite of the afternoon, so a great start. Can’t go wrong with dumplings in my books.
A bowl of sea-salted edamame beans arrived next, tenderly cooked and dip-able in bowls of soy sauce and mirin.
These were quickly followed by beautifully-presented scallops with lemongrass beurre blanc and a plate with a pinwheel design of seared salmon, tuna and octopus sashimi & ponzu. Spot on. We’ve been looking for a new place for Japanese food since our favourite closed down last year, so hooray for yummy Asian seafood.
More cocktails came. Jorge ordered the same again and I had a sweet surprise that wasn’t on the menu: raspberry and two different types of rum.
And there was more. Next, a newspapered cup of chilli salt squid (minus the chillies for my sensitive tastebuds) arrived. This was Jorge’s favourite from the afternoon.
When we could barely eat another bite, another small plate of dumplings showed up, these ones fried and crispy on the outside – pork and ginger gyoza. With those, a salad that was made up of one of the most interesting combinations I’ve seen, but that worked really well in terms of tastes and textures. It was a duck, watermelon & cashew salad with a tiny bit of chilli, mint leaves and onion.
And still to come: the mains… which we actually ended up boxing these up for dinner because, apart from a bite of each, we just couldn’t fit anymore. They made a great treat later on though! We had Sri Lankan sea bream with lychees on top and a curry sauce with tomatoes and we also had the banana leaf steamed halibut with nahm jim which is actually perfectly light and healthy for a spring/summer option.
In the name of gluttony and because we both have a sweet tooth, we managed to devour a plate of four banoffee spring rolls and a small bowl of vanilla ice cream.
And then we somehow magically made it home, slightly tipsy and in total food comas. We’ll be back!
Note: Our meal was complimentary but opinions are our own!
14 Blenheim Crescent
London W11 1NN