Todays review takes me back to soho
I promise I eat elsewhere one of my favourite square miles in London for remarkable food. The energy in soho at any time of the day is one of constant buzz, not least because of all the people but because of all the eateries that seem to pop up out of nowhere and proceed to draw in food lovers from all over. London’s food scene has been dominated by central asian cuisine in recent years and Bun house soho filled a niche we never knew we needed!If you haven’t caught a glimpse of their beautiful buns then quite frankly what are you doing with your life?
Their salted duck egg Bao, with undertones of coconut and carrot balances on a bridge between sweet and savoury, oozing with amber goo, which comes with a guarantee of viscosity
There aren’t many places in London that you can go and be catapulted into the past, nostalgia hitting you, dish after dish but BH did exactly that for me. From their perfect Baozi (包子) which I used to eat on the way to work in Beijing to the Duck tongue that I just couldn’t imagine eating in Wudaokou. If you’re after authentic taste,Bun house is where you’ll find it!
Perched perfectly on the corner of greek street on the edge of soho, bun house really is something quite special. Upstairs is home to a stunning, visually satisfying bun cafe, adorned with the most satisfying teal tones, bamboo chairs and gorgeous marble tables.
In the far corner, sit large bamboo steamers home to the beautiful bao’s which are impeccably blazoned with mandarin characters.Their upstairs menu is all about the buns, with flavours ranging from pork, lamb and chicken to their famous salted duck egg custard buns.
Even before I saw any food, their amalgamation of flavours set precedent for an interesting dining experience
Much like the baozi you’ll find in Beijing, their fluffy buns are perfect pillowy balls of goodness .Their salted duck egg Bao, with undertones of coconut and carrot balances on a bridge between sweet and savoury, oozing with amber goo, which comes with a guarantee of viscosity. They also have a snack menu with some equally delicious and unusual flavours but if you’re wanting to really taste the magic, make a b-line for their secret tea house downstairs.
Much like anywhere else, a restaurants cocktail menu speaks a lot about its creativity and even before I saw any food, their amalgamation of flavours set precedent for an interesting dining experience. With flavours ranging from Daikon and bok choi, sugar and winter melon and cigarette and palm sugar, make no mistake, their mixologist is pure genius!
Imagine deep-frying the tip of a pigs ear, and throwing in a few bones just for fun. Now try and imagine how delicious that would be to eat,NOT!
To ensure an honest review i obviously had to order most of the menu, i like to be thorough (Great excuse right)
To start I tasted their egg brûlée, perfecty caramelised with a hard sugar shell which cracks to reveal its rich yolk. It sat abed a nest of salty dried mushroom which is perfectly edible and contrasts incredibly with the the sweetness of the egg!
Of course I had try their signature deep fried duck tongue with Sriracha mayo.When opening a new restaurant there are always going to be a few misses and this was definitely one of them.The combination of the small bones in the Tongue itself (gross) and the thick oily batter just doesn’t have a place on such an otherwise great menu or on any menu in-fact. If you’re going to tempura a protein that hasn’t been pre-cooked, it has to be something that is easy to eat. Imagine deep-frying the tip of a pigs ear, and throwing in a few bones just for fun. Now try and imagine how delicious that would be to eat,NOT!
…its crisp puffed kernels linking arms like a 90’s girlband forming an almost pancake like body…
Redemption came almost instantly in the form of perfectly geometric triangles of silken tofu, beautifully seasoned, crisp and piping hot. Gone are the days of flavourless blocks of tofu floating in a soup or the horrible leathery pressed tofu, trying its best to rival eggs. Tofu alone is extremely bland, but in the hands of someone who is able to understand and balance flavour, it can be incredible.
I then tried their Lacey pork dumplings, which although really beautiful to look at, didn’t quite pack the punch I anticipated.If you’re serving gyoza without a dressing or soy based dip the filling has to be perfectly seasoned. Then came the sweet charred corn which although just looks like a plate of grilled corn was one my favourite.It can only be described as a perfect medium between sweet corn and popcorn, its crisp puffed kernels linking arms like a 90’s girlband forming an almost pancake like body, without a battered base.
The food kept coming, a mushroom Bao Zai fan (煲仔饭) which translated to claypot cooked sticky rice and these incredibly Moorish Garlicky chicken wings.
I finished the meal with a fried Mantou (馒头) , another Dish I recognised from china. Mantou (馒头) in northern china are usually steamed or fried rectangular buns filled with Thick oozing condensed milk and BH’S buns were a great take on a Chinese classic.
Wether you’re just passing by for a cheeky bun or wanting to enjoy the ambience of their downstairs tea room, I implore you to see what bun house has to offer. And remember, if the custard bun isn’t smooth enough to trickle down your chin and into the crevice of your favourite bag (I have issues) you’re guaranteed a replacement!