Mr Chow London, Knightsbridge

Mr Chow, situated in the heart of glitzy Knightsbridge, is definitely a place to see and be seen at. Frequented by the glitterati, the London branch has seen the likes of Simon Cowell, Beyonce, Lady Gaga and Justin Bieber walk through it's doors. But putting it's celebrity cult status behind, to me Mr Chow isn't what it seems to be.

Reminiscent of a high-end 1960s establishment, the interior was not as tacky as I thought it to be. Serving up what I'd call experimental-Chinese cuisine, items on the menu were more suited to the American palate. Think Chinese food in a white takeaway box, though slightly more elaborate than that.

We began our meal with Crispy Duck Rolls filled with shredded duck and vegetables. Though the rolls were a bit too crunchy and the sauce a bit too dull for my tastes, the duck and vegetables were tender and certainly made amends. Our expectations still remained high as we waited for our mains.

Our Glazed Prawns with Walnuts was a pleasure to eat. The prawns were cooked perfectly, and had a lovely crisp exterior. There was just enough of (what seemed to be) a mayo-based sauce to coat the shrimp, and together with the walnuts the dish proved to be a unusual but satisfying course.

If the dish 'Squid Ink Noodles with Squid' doesn't sound the least bit funky - then I don't know what does. Reminiscent of an insipid plate of Char Kwey Teow (a Chinese noodle dish from Malaysia), the only lasting thing I got out of eating this was a stained mouth. The dish was heavy, bland and one-dimensional. Strike one.

The Spicy Roasted Pork was not to my liking either. Apart from the disproportionate amount of pork to vegetables, the dish was too spicy for me to appreciate anything, not that there was anything worth appreciating at all. Also, did I forget to mention the strands of HAIR in it? Strike two

The Drunken Fish was a dish which tasted just as obscure as it sounded. The fish was abundant but lacked in quality and freshness - which was good, as the sauce had enough of rice-wine vinegar to overpower my entire taste-buds. Along with the pork and the noodles, this was horribly disappointing. Strike three.

Three strikes, and you're out

Our dishes were accompanied with some Fried Rice. The rice itself was delicate and filled aplenty with prawns and spring onions. It was a pity that we weren't able enjoy it, thanks to the overpowering mains that we personally felt obliged to finish (I mean, for the price that we were paying).

This serving of Peach Tart à la mode was given to me as a complementary dessert after having found strands of hair in my Spicy Roasted Pork. Cold and overly sweet, it wasn't enjoyable at all (the tart of course). And as for the ice cream? If ever Plane Jane were to be a scoop of ice-cream, she would've been just that.

Our bill came up to slightly over £200, and we left the restaurant full but sorely disappointed. To all of you who plan on visiting, you'd be better off ordering from a Chinese takeout than eating at - quite possibly - one of the worst excuses for a Chinese restaurant I've been to. Spare yourselves the pain and avoid it at all costs - because the least that one can expect from a restaurant constantly serving up the glitterati, are hair-free dishes.

Address: 151 Knightsbridge, London SW1X 7PA, United Kingdom

Presentation: 3/10

Ambiance: 8/10

Service: 7/10

Overall Taste: 3/10

General Impression: 2/10





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