3 April 2017

Chi Kitchen, Oxford Street

Did you know Debenhams on Oxford Street has restaurants in it? I didn't. But sure enough, hidden towards the back, on the right, on the ground floor, sits Chi Kitchen. It's a contemporary, Pan-Asian restaurant, with a new Laksa offering. 

Described as 'colourful, tasty and exotic', we were looking forward to a delicious dinner.

Although Chi Kitchen has a separate entrance, it's hard to shake the feeling that you're in a shop restaurant. The interiors make a strong effort to make you feel otherwise - the lights and booths are a step away from the harsh, clinical feel of the shop floor.

We'd been invited by Chi Kitchen to review the Laksa menu, inspired by consultant chef and Masterchef winner, Ping Coombes. To our delight, we were permitted 3 signature dishes in addition to the Laksa (already a full course in itself)... plus rice (!)

And a bottle of house white, which was happily received.

Eyes bigger than our stomachs - the best kind - we went for...

Sambal prawns; sticky, sweet, with a hint of heat. Very delicious.

Chicken Thai green curry - pleasingly not too spicy, but enough to get my eyes watering and my nose starting to run (attractive, I know).

And our final signature dish, the Szechaun beef. Perfection. I couldn't fault it.

We both ordered the Tom Yum Laksa, a spicy Tom Yum soup with vermicelli noodles and bean sprouts - chicken for me, prawn for my friend.

I'd been wary of ordering this Laksa because of my low spice threshold, but the soup was tasteless. I gave it a few goes - we both tried each other's for good measure - but we didn't pursue it.

Odd, considering this was what we'd been invited to review, and it was the most disappointing, least seasoned dish. 

Luckily, we had more than enough food and rice to make up for it. But we felt so bad pushing it to the far end of the table in favour of everything else...

Next, dessert. Mine was the most exciting - the Chocolate Sphere. It was one of those melt-when-you-pour-the-sauce-on situations, so I couldn't resist.




It was very good. The warm, salted caramel sauce, the milk chocolate sphere, melting to reveal a dollop of vanilla ice cream. Complete with mini buttons and berries scattered around the base.

All washed down with a very conservative peppermint tea...

If you find yourself in Oxford Street, craving Asian cuisine, and don't fancy venturing to Chinatown, give Chi Kitchen a go. It's unpretentious, and what we had - awkwardly, minus the Laksa - was delicious. If you only have one dish, get the Szechaun beef. And the Chocolate Sphere is just too good to share.

Find Chi Kitchen in Debenhams, Oxford Street.

I was invited by Chi Kitchen to review the Laksa, in addition to other items from the menu. However, all opinions are my own. 

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