After her recent visit to The Dorsett Shepherds Bush, our Lifestyle Writer, Helena, couldn’t help but have her eye on the enticing smell and polished entrance of Shikumen, we all know how hard it is to find an authentic Cantonese in London, steering away from China Town and we wanted to find out if they really do serve “London’s best Peking duck.”
Shikumen is the still-pretty-new Chinese restaurant situated cozily at the Ground Floor of The Dorsett Shepherds Bush that oozes class although you don’t have to worry whether you fit in or if you’re wearing the right outfit. With elegant but relaxed Asian hospitality, the restaurant serves high quality Cantonese dishes from carefully sourced ingredients and really transports you on an Oriental journey once inside.
You walk into a sudden ambiance of faint Oriental sounds and a little waterfall statue to set the scene, the deep earthy dark wood colour scheme certainly helped the vision and couldn’t help feel serene although the mid-week dinner bustle was setting in.
The staff are amazing, awfully traditional and helpful and navigated us patiently through the menu suggesting the favourites and the signature, the Bejing Peking Duck, which is carved at your table and served with handmade fresh pancakes and Chinese buns. The buns are a great touch, different from the usual.
You MUST order the duck, which is what Shikumen pride themselves on. The server cuts the meat off so delicately in front of you for your first serving, and the other half is sent back to the kitchen where you have a choice of fried rice with duck or duck soup for the second serving. They also give you a tiny dish with a few pieces of crispy skin which is traditionally dipped into icing sugar, not particularly for me, but the skin was deliciously crisp nonetheless.
The homemade pancakes and the buns undeniably deserve a mention as they both taste amazingly authentic and are teamed together perfectly with the Hoi-Sin sauce, spring onions and cucumber. Definitely one of my favourites!
We also tried the Crispy King Prawn Marinated in Wasabi, which was equally appetizing with the wasabi proving to be the perfect accompaniment.
We were additionally recommended to try the Scottish Beef Fillet in Red Wine Black Pepper Sauce and Roasted Chilean Sea Bass in Honey King Sauce which was the perfect accompaniment for the Duck Fried Rice and the suggestions certainly didn’t disappoint. The beef was extremely soft and tender with a slight spice and of course Oriental bite. Whilst the sea bass immensely light, the crisp honey glazed coating fusing perfectly. Be careful how much you order for your main course as the Duck starter can fill you up quite a bit, and their portions are generous, happily we left with a take away bag in tow. Unfortunately on this occasion, there was no room for dessert!
Shikumen has set high standards and looked after us well, with exceptional food and atmosphere it’s the ideal alternative to your boringly casual Friday night Chinese take-away. Furthermore the exceptional range of handmade Dim Sum is just an excuse for #TeamCoco’s swift return.
Shikumen are currently running a competition where they are giving away a Peking Duck every fortnight and an overnight stay at the Dorsett Shepherds Bush once a month!
Make sure you enter for your chance to win HERE!
Shikumen Shepherd’s Bush
Dorsett Hotel, 58 Shepherd’s Bush Green, London W12 8QE
020 8749 9978