Fusing contemporary dining with classic Chinese cooking adds up to a unique and stylish experience
This review is taken from the current (2016) edition.
Exquisitely balanced honey chilli chicken? Check. Beef in wonderfully rich black bean sauce? Check. Monkfish hotpot in a secret recipe broth? Yes please. Ornamental dragons? Umm, decorative bamboo sticks in a stylish recess might have to do. Owner Jimmy Lee wants to bring metropolitan sophistication to Oriental dining and by big city he means Hong Kong – so anyone looking for lanterns might be disappointed. Everyone else can enjoy the thoughtful combination of minimalist contemporary style and Chinese dishes delivered with aplomb. Clean lines and dark wooden blinds partition an interior with an upmarket continental bistro feel and, as the menus arrive, only that bamboo artwork suggests the content. Open them and it’s hard to ignore the set menu – a range of smartly picked classics at a great price. Prawn wonton and chicken satay starters provide immediate reassurance that as much care is taken with the kitchen as the furnishings. Serving up traditional with a modern twist shouldn’t be rocket science, but if it is, the Chinese did invent gunpowder. Lychee Oriental's take on the cuisine is as refreshing on the senses as it is on the palate.
- High point: Dares to be be different
- Low point: Could have had more time between courses
- Notable dish: Monkfish hot pot
- Private dining: Up to 30 covers
- Provides: Halal options, Children's portions, Children's high chairs, Wheelchair access, Pre-theatre menu, Free wi-fi
- Music on stereo: Tinkly piano lounge music, easy listening crooners
- Capacity: 96
- Largest group: 96
- Open since: 2012
- Number of wines sold by the glass: 7
- House wine: £15.60 per bottle