Do you remember your first proper date with the person that you eventually fell in love with, and maybe even married?
There are lots of restaurants in London that we love. But, there will always be one place that’s incredibly special to Mr Silver and I.
Let’s go back a step…Do you remember the day that you left you home for that date?
As you got ready to to leave, taking extra care with your appearance, your heart thumping in your chest…so nervous, yet so excited.
The feeling of anticipation…
Could he be the one? Is this finally IT….
Mr Silver and I had this experience at Michelin-starred Cantonese restaurant, Hakkasan
in Mayfair, a restaurant that we loved so much that we’ve returned to it many times with friends and loved ones. And when we came to New York it seemed only natural that we would visit the Stateside branch of this restaurant that was so special to us.
As I walked down the corridor of the sexy interior of Hakkasan, New York
I was reminded of that day at the London restaurant. On that day I didn’t take much notice of the sleek dark wood, funky marble motifs and cool blue lighting, I was thinking about the person I was about to meet. But this time I could fully appreciate how fab the interior was.
Especially the long blue bar, clearly the ideal place to start of your perfect date night.
On that first date in London it was this face that I was so excited to see. Who knew how the night would turn out, what we would talk about, eat and drink…
Well… now nearly four years later Mr Silver and I are pretty / very used to going out for meals together.
I bet you and your other half can look at a menu and guess what the other one will order?
You always know your favourite things to share…
And I always know what I will coerce Mr S into sharing with me….
The interior actually belies the time of day, it was lunch time and a very cold rainy day in New York. Mr S and I had walked to Hakkasan from our hotel. It wasn’t far but we’d fought through crowds of tourists, tangled umbrellas and huge puddles to get there…so needless to say we were very happy to arrive and order cocktails.
Mr Silver chose a Temple of Heaven, containing rum, ginger, lychee juice and passion fruit juice.
I chose a Strawberry and Ginger Bellini. Not only were both drinks totally gorgeous to look at, they were absolutely delicious. I don’t like over sweet cocktails but both of these struck the perfect balance of sweetness with a touch of tartness. Perhaps some of the best cocktails I’ve ever had…
We both love dim sum and we’ll always have the dim sum mixed platter at the London Hakkasan. In New York there is a whole menu dedicated to dim sum, drawing inspiration from London’s sister restaurant Yauatcha
We chose prawn and chive…
….and har gau (pork and prawn) for our steamed dim sum. I thing I love about dim sum is it’s actually fairly light in calories but you really feel like you’re having a treat as you wrap your chopsticks around their fat and glossy exteriors.
Our very helpful and knowledgeable waitress suggested the crispy beancurd prawn cheung fun which we’d never tried before.
I ended up loving this…a steamed rice roll, with a hot layer of crispy fried bean curd stuffed with juicy and perfectly cooked prawns. It was a little on the heavy side so I’d suggest sharing this with a group of people so you try one or two pieces.
Another cocktail? Well, when pretending to be on a first date, a bit of dutch courage is needed.
For the next round, our choice of fresh fruit flavouring was switched around. I loved my bellini, so I went ahead and tried the passion fruit version. I urged Mr S to try the Strawberry and Basil Martini containing white balsamic vingar and Thai basil leaves. It just sounded so interesting; and it looked and tasted gorgeous.
I could have stuck with ordering dim sum and little sharing bits but Mr S needed feeding more so we ordered two light(ish) main courses.
A nice and spicy wok fried seafood dish containing prawns, squid and white fish.
And a soft shell crab.
Soft shell crab is one of my favourite dishes and I absolutely adore the London version. When I started eating the dish I enjoyed it but the NY crab is made with buttermilk and I soon found it too sweet and greasy to continue eating. While I’m not saying I didn’t like it, I found it a lot heavier than the London version and struggled to eat more of it.
As you can imagine we were pretty full…but then the chef sent over these:
A beautiful chocolate cake that was like a creamy macaron topped with popcorn and crispies.
Which has gone down in history as simply the best dessert ever. If you told me a pumpkin pie would be my favourite ever dessert, I wouldn’t believe you. I’ve tried pumpkin pie before and I find it too sickly sweet.
Was perfect. I love the way that, as with the cocktails…the sweetness is balanced by a tart flavour. Creamy, luscious, chocolatey and biscuity…it was a dessert of pure perfection.
And with all that indulgence, we bought back some balance.
Doesn’t green tea burn calories or something?
I always say a fantastic experience isn’t just about the great food and atmosphere in a restaurant; it’s the feelings and the special memories that experience evokes. And I could happily return day after day to that first time Mr S and shared a basket of dim sum at Hakkasan.
Thanks for the memories, Hakkasan, New York.
Hakkasan, New York
311 West 43rd Street
Our meal at Hakkasan, New York was complimentary, but I think you tell that I like it just a bit.