Stroll through the City on any given weekday lunch and you will be spoilt for choice. The area is now saturated with quirky market stalls, food vans, cafe chains and luxurious restaurants for that all-important midday refuel. Be it for business or pleasure Yauatcha City, set in the heart of Broadgate Circle, is a must for any discerning city diner.
Serving all day dim sum, decadent cocktails, wok dishes, intricate pastries and fragrant teas Yauatcha City is the latest in a series of restaurants originally stemming from Alan Yau. The family of restaurants includes City's Michelin starred older sister - Yauatcha Soho, the internationally acclaimed Hakkasan and Yau's answer to Wagamama - Busaba Ethai.
Step into the restaurant and you will be welcomed with an air of calm and a tranquil atmosphere set by the chain's trademark series of aquariums, deep blue glass, exposed brick, white marble tops and iconic flashes of pink and blue. I am immediately transported back to trips to Beijing and Hong Kong's dim sum cafes.
The hyper efficient and extensive team of waiting staff is immaculately dressed in Diane von Furstenburg designs and eager to please.
Hungry after a busy morning we ordered a selection of dim sum dishes to share and a steaming pot of Jasmine tea, arriving in charming turquoise teacups and matching pot.
The crispy duck rolls arrived first. A classic of flaking and rich Peking duck, surrounded by crisp pastry and fresh cucumber shards, all to be coated and lavished in the deep and dark, velvety plum sauce.
Next came the spicy pork Szechuan wonton with peanuts. The wonton shell was soft, its curves soaked in the spicy broth and perfectly encasing the dense pork filling.
Venison puffs are one of my absolutely favourites at any dim sum joint, and these were amongst the best. The pastry was buttery and melting with a sweet lightly spiced glaze, flaking away to reveal the most incredible aromatic, sweet slow cooked venison filling.
The steamed wild mushroom dumplings were lovely and light, their flash of green reflecting the vibrant and fresh flavour within.
Unsure what to expect we chanced on the King crab Shanghai siew long bun with pork. The simply presented steamed buns burst at the touch of chopsticks, releasing a flow of spiced broth around the crab and pork centre. These were divine.
The pastry stall at Yauatcha encompasses traditional Chinese heritage and modern European gastronomy. It features a cabinet full of intricate gateaux, tarts, chocolates and macarons that are all every bit as good as they look.
So to accompany our second steaming pot of Jasmine tea we ordered a selection of macarons - salted caramel, matcha pistachio, rose, and coconut lychee. The balance of fragrant and sweet was perfected in the delicate pink rose macaron.
Even if you have no time or excuse to treat yourself to lunch at Yauatcha City be sure to visit their pastry counter and spoil yourself with a box of possibly the best and most beautiful macarons I have ever tasted.
I am an amateur cook blogging about the food I eat and cook, and my travels along the way.