By Patrice Sweeney
Throbbing immersive music and opulent decor usher in those who come to eat and drink at Buddha-Bar Knightsbridge.
Crystal dragon chandeliers hang like twinkling pendants in the interior’s seductive and calculated lighting, creating an unbridled sense of drama. They imbue their surroundings with a striking elegance that carries into the restaurant’s generous menu.
Before savouring the pan-Asian cuisine however, a stop at the bar reveals an inventive cocktail list. Of mention is the Rose Petal Martini, whose delicate floral nuances soften the commanding presence of its accompanying gin. For visitors that need a guiding hand, a courteous and knowledgeable bar staff provides insight into the sprawling selection of beverages at hand.
With culinary influences hailing from Thailand, China, and Japan, the palate is swept into a fusion of flavors that adorn each dish. The Buddha-Bar Rolls feature jade slivers of chilled cucumber encircling mixed sashimi. Each piece is topped with diminutive crowns of caviar, whose capricious bursts of saltiness interject the stately iron of the raw salmon, tuna, and prawn.
The Salt Crispy Baby Squid is a troika of golden batter, airy crunchiness, and measured heat from scattered chilli flakes. The squid is succulent without being moisture-laden, and the aromatic acidity from an Australian Riesling does well to cut through the mild greasiness of each bite. Also deep-fried, the Volcano Rolls’ crunchy exterior creates a firm yet pliable stronghold around a mixed fish and vegetable core.
Other warm options feature Grilled Black Cod in Sesame Sauce, and Teriyaki Goma Chicken with steamed jasmine rice. A medium-bodied Barolo can accompany either dish, as its sharp yet pleasant tannins moderate the sweet undertones of the proteins’ sauces.
No gastronomic adventure can end without dessert however, and Buddha-Bar London doesn’t disappoint.
For guests whose appetites aren’t entirely satiated, the Chocolate Salted Sesame Bar is unapologetically indulgent. Its decadence can be paired with plum sake, whose own ephemeral notes also feature chocolate. The picturesque arrangement of the Exotic Fruit Platter provides a more delicate option, and its light selection of fruit can be paired with the refreshing citrus hints of Yuzu sake.
Visit Buddha-Bar London’s dedicated site to discover more about its high-end cuisine and cocktails.