Chinese New Year in London is definitely different to CNY in Sydney, which is definitely different to CNY in Singapore. We went for dinner in Kam Tong restaurant in Bayswater with a large group of about 15 of us to dine on “must have” CNY fare. Of course, “must have” soon turned to optional fare once we got a handle of some of the prices being asked on CNY eve. Okay, some of it wasn’t about price, just the dish – I mean, good luck or not, I’m always happy to give sea cucumber a miss. Loh hei, on the other hand, was at an astronomical asking price of GBP 60. Given that I technically know how to make Loh hei, and can feed everyone (and then some) for under ten (or less), I thought the asking price was a bit steep – even for CNY. And, I wasn’t the only one. Besides, I’m sure they weren’t going to give us sashimi size raw fish to toss. More likely we’d get a few strips of raw fish lost amongst all the veggies.
Most of the dishes at Kam Tong were very tasty and I do think comparable to the tastiness of Sydney Chinese restaurants. However, they were quite small …. except for the crispy chicken. My goodness, birds come big in England and this one was a huge dish with tons of leftover chicken. Mental note for next time.
Not sure whether this is a London thing or maybe it’s a Kam Tong thing, but the waiters are very pushy when it comes to ordering. Whilst I value their suggestions, I find it a bit suspect when they keep suggesting the most expensive dishes on the menu eg. Fish (Market price), Lobster noodles (again Market price), Loh hei (see first paragraph) etc. Once you get past the ordering, the dishes are pretty good.