The graceful curving staircase that leads into Sui Tang Li is a first hint of the elegance about to hit your table top. Helmed by Tony Ye, previously at Michelin-starred Yong Yi Ting, The Middle House’s contemporary Chinese restaurant is dishing out the kind of keyed-up, turned-on inspired takes on Cantonese classics and wider ranging regional cuisine sorely missing in the city.
Jasmine tea-smoked pomfret arrives under a belljar with the theatre of a cocktail; it’s smoky like a good whisky, deliciously sweet and shatteringly crispy. Live a little and get the beef tongue with frog legs – arguably the best dish on the menu, it’s practically vibrating in its Sichuan mala spice-laden broth, studded with fresh lotus root and topped with green peppercorns.
On the dim sum front, things are equally as bright. Sink your teeth into vegetable soup dumplings redolent with black truffle and coal-black skins to match, or devour exquisite, sunshine golden dumplings stuffed with shrimp and scallop. It’s not bargain dim sum but the elevated quality is unmistakeable.
Bone to pick? Does anyone really want to eat in a serviced apartment building, no matter how nice they may be? The vibes might be lacking for anything beyond a delicious lunch. But shut your eyes, fill your belly and you’ll be on cloud nine.
By Cat Nelson