Seemingly on a mission to change the somewhat dubious reputation of London’s Chinese restaurant scene, Geoffrey Leong’s Restaurant Privilege group has grown into a 15-strong restaurant empire in just a handful of years. The latest (although Geoffrey will probably have opened a couple more by the time I’ve written this review!) is Goldfish City.
Goldfish City takes on the immensely successful formula of the original Goldfish that has wowed the locals of Hampstead, albeit with a slight City twist. Stylishly designed in muted black bamboo and sustainable woods, Goldfish City’s unassuming location in a character-rich Georgian building very much keeps with the understated tone of the financial district these days. City boys tired of sandwiches at lunch can take advantage of the well priced bento boxes for under £10, whilst those who have a bit of celebrating to do will no doubt be tempted by the ground floor karaoke bar.
However, it’s Head Chef Kevin Chow’s Pan-Asian influenced modern Chinese a la carte menu that the restaurant really takes its pride in. It’s all accessible and inviting stuff, with a range of classic dishes including Soft-shell crab, Crispy aromatic duck and Chicken in black bean sauce. Look a little deeper though, and there are also a number of more adventurous options such as a Pumpkin broth with broccoli & mushroom; and a particularly peculiar and divisive Mocha ribs, a signature dish that features a champagne marinade and coating of Varlhona dark chocolate and coffee bean.
The quality of ingredients used is a world away from the local Chinese restaurants that most of are used to. However, in terms of taste and execution, some of the more experimental dishes are just trying a little too hard to impress, with overly heavy sauces and a lack of balance in the spicing that doesn’t do the dish complete justice. Keep to the classics though, and as far as Chinese restaurants in the City go, Goldfish is worth a shout.
Cuisine type: Chinese
Dinner for two (excluding drinks): £60
46 Gresham Street
020 7726 0308