Finding a new favourite grazing spot is something Londoners take quite seriously. We take it to heart, we treat it as our own and we are ever so cautious as to who we share it with. Yuu Kitchen is the exact definition of such a spot. Located in the newly buzzing Aldgate East. This south Asian, tapas style joint has the perfect ambience for a chilled evening. Made up of a bar table for you to peruse the brilliant chefs at work or smaller tables for those looking for a more private evening. For a large party or simply as a communal space lies the main table underneath the signature piece of decor: an array of bird cage lights.
OK, now the important bit. THE FOOD! As mentioned before the menu consists of South Asian influenced tapas options and the staff are well equipped to recommend the populars, chef favourites and the adventurous dishes. For starters we went for the Filipino Style Chicken Wings, be ready to get your hands dirty (but they also give you these cute little wet towels). They were beautifully seasoned, and had a nice tangy flavour-full taste with a nice crunch.
It’s always so hard trying to choose what to order, especially from a tapas menu. So we pretty much just ordered everything. It would be an absolute crime not to order at least two of the BAOs, we went for the braised pork belly and the buttermilk crispy chicken. The chicken was as good as you can imagine, you can’t really go wrong with buttermilk crispy, the coriander added the fresh touch you never knew it needed and the kimchi slaw gave it the perfect amount of kick. The pork belly was my personal number 1 item on the menu, tender, freshly seasoned taste, and a surprising but welcoming bbq kick.
The menu has a range of healthy steamed options for those of you who are trying to steer away from ‘fried fried fried’. The sea bass was so fresh it tasted like the ocean (i’m not joking) and the BBQd’ octopus was beautifully braised with sake, mirin and soy and not overpowering at all and the crunchy shallots perfectly complimented the dish.
For me choosing the dessert was a no brainer. My mouth literally dropped when I saw ‘Ice Cream BAO’ it was like I couldn’t believe it was a thing. And it was EVERYTHING. The bun was the perfect amount of warm stuffed with pistachio ice-cream. They have an adventurous selection of ice-cream but Jon the head chef/co-owner recommended the pistachio, and blimey was he right. We all know how beautiful a warm/cold combo is and this one perfectly hit the spot. My mouth watering jealous friend went for the chocolate spring rolls which comes with a selection of ice-creams. She especially liked the syrup and peanut additions and described the ganache as a melt in your mouth dessert! YUM.
Yuu Kitchen really does have something for everyone, beautiful setting and ambience fitting for a date, catch-up or even a large party Bday celebration. Price wise it sits together with the majority of London spots, reasonable for the service and quality you receive. Definitely one for the London eating wishlist.
Written by Alvin Engutsamy