Southam Street. All photos courtesy of NHYM apart from this one, courtesy of the internet. NHYM 2018.
I am always excited to hear about new restaurant openings in Notting Hill, because one easily gets bored (yawn) and tired by the same old stalwarts (ie. ‘Shall we go to Osteria/The Oak/e&o?’ etc…) So when Southam Street invited me to write a review of their new restaurant, I was more than happy to oblige since I love Pan Asian food and I love Notting Hill. So last Thursday, I took some friends along to try it out.
Southam Street is a Robata and Raw restaurant set over two floors with a top floor Tequila bar. That night we were seated on the ground floor, which has a scandi feel to it: white-painted exposed bricks, Danish-style chairs and industrial pipes coming out of a very cool ceiling.
Golborne Road is having something of a renaissance and this restaurant is just one of its recent openings. 108 Garage established itself as ‘the one to watch’ when it opened in 2017 and received brilliant reviews, quickly finding a spot in Bloomberg’s Best 100 restaurants in the UK: So it is unsurprising that the duo behind 108 Garage opened a new resto down the street called Southam Street (and that duo is a story in itself with Luca the Italian banker and Chris the Gumtree Chef.)
Double Salmon Roll. NHYM 2018.
Yellowtail Tartare. NYYM 2018
We started out our meal with some of the raw offerings: The Double Salmon Roll and the Yellowtail Tartare. The double salmon was fresh and succulent, just as any good sushi restaurant in Mayfair with triple the price. The yellowtail tartare was good, but perhaps less memorable.
Bao Bun. NHYM 2018.
But let’s cut right to the chase. The Korean fried chicken Bao Bun is really the piece de resistance in this restaurant and is – literally – everyone’s favourite. We all ordered one, but one of our friends liked it so much, he ordered two. Someone said they would come to Southam just for it and my husband still raves about it.
Thai Salad. NHYM 2018.
I personally also love the Thai salad with mi-cuit salmon and salmon roe mixed with grapefruit, shallots, and lots of herbs – it is delicious and after the salad and the Bao Bun, I could have gone home happy.
Iberico pork. NHYM 2018.
But instead, we kept ordering, and had the wagyu beef sliders, which were very tasty, and the Iberico pork pluma – also very good. As sides, we had asparagus grilled on a Robata a la Nobu style, which I really liked, and broccoli in sesame sauce. All quite delicious.
Rump Steak and Broccoli. NHYM 2018.
The rump steak was a bit on the fatty side and could have used a bit more sauce/marinade, but by this time we were so full that we didn’t really care.
Fondant. NHYM 2018.
For dessert, the chocolate moelleux hit the spot, which rivals Nobu’s as well and the panna cotta, which wasn’t panna cotta, but a chawan mushi (Ok, the Japanese version of a panna cotta) was equally delicious.
Strawberry Chawan Mushi. NHYM 2018.
It was all very beautifully decorated with edible flowers and pretty colours. The only – little – downside to the whole experience was the service…which was slightly inexperienced. Cocktails came at staggered intervals, and questions about the food were met with head-caught-in-headlights stares: ‘How are the sliders? Uhm. I don’t know, I haven’t tried them. How is the Iberico pork cooked? Uhm, I don’t know, let me ask’ which happened a few times, but having said that, they were very friendly, mostly attentive, and did try.
Southam Street is a great little addition to west London’s dining scene with some excellent dishes (crispy chicken Bao Bun and Salmon Roe Thai Salad) and some old Nobu-style favourites. The service could use some refining, but the food and the friendliness was enough of a distraction to keep us happy all night long.
Thank you Southam Street for a wonderful Thursday treat!
**Southam Street invited me and three friends but all views and opinions expressed are my own**