500 g calamari
1/2 cup flour
1 egg
1/4 cup milk
lime juice
2 teaspoons sea salt
szechwan peppercorns
1/2 teaspoon cracked black pepper
vegetable oil, for deep-frying
- Preheat oven to 150 degrees Celsius.
Dip calamari into the combined egg and milk.
- Combine sea salt, limejuice, corianda and peppers in a shallow bowl, and coat calamari in this mixture.
- Transfer to a plate and place in the fridge for 20 minutes.
- Heat oil in saucepan and deep-fry calamari in batches until golden brown. Drain on paper towels.
Recipe for a busaba calamari dish (may not be authentic)
by Nic T July 10, 2008
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Review of busaba eathai in London.
I have just come back from this place.There were three of us,we ordered Thai green curry rice with chargrilled chicken: The rice was lovely, a good size portion bowl size with lots of the chicken-delicious, grilled sword fish bit too thin the piece I had not very filling but very tasty with a lovely ginger lime sort of sauce (not too sweetish like a lot of thai sauces) with more of a chilli kick to it. Plain jasmine rice presented in a china covered bowl fluffy and well cooked. padthai noodles, huge portion and lovely taste.

Three starters chargrilled chicken satay the 3 chicken pieces were big and could have been a small dinner for someone not too hungry with a side order rice, the sauce was a bit too sweet for me but my friend loved it,

Busaba calamari, both my friends loved this and again I was surprised at the portion for a starter calamari dish-both friends strongly recommend this dish bit again I wasnt into the sweetish thai flavour. spring rolls: crispy, light but average small size-nothing special but bog standard as you would get anywhere else.

We paid 52 pounds between us including a mango lassi ,guava juice (delicious) ,and lemongrasse and something presse .Not bad at all for 3 people...once you have eaten the waitress gives you the bill to move you along ,but then this is not the sort of place you go to for the entire evening to have a after dinner coffee and chat as it is busy, bustling, the queue is right out on the street to get in. Lively atmosphere and sharing the table with others gives you an opportunity to see what the dishes on offer look like before you order! Despite the sharing of tables we were still relaxed and had a great time. Great place to go to and more than reasonably priced
by Calvin K July 10, 2008
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Having created a winning formula, restaurateur Alan Yau has had little reason to tamper with Busaba's shared tables and bench seating, or the oriental mystique created by clever design, dark wood, incense and low lighting. The dishes are consistently interesting, as you might expect of a menu initially created by chef David Thompson of Nahm, though the menu does evolve and changes regularly. Current dishes worth seeking out are the rice served with a generous amount of crab meat, or the delicately textured tofu, lightly fried then served with a spicy yellow bean sauce. Salads, such as the pomelo with water chestnut and chilli, are a strong point; so are the hot drinks (lemongrass and honey). Occasionally the noodle dishes can disappoint: our vegetarian pad thai had flaccid noodles, and had a gloopy sauce coating the baby sweetcorn and shiitake mushrooms. But the disappointments are easily outnumbered by the hits at this popular joint, and the dishes are never dull in either flavour or ingredients.

Phoenix Equity Partners have recently invested in Yau's Busaba Eathai Holdings Limited, signalling a new era for this popular chain as plans for expansion go underway. 20-30 new branches across the UK will be rolled out over the next five years.
Lemongrass, chilli prawns, busaba calamari
by Time Out Eating July 10, 2008
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Staple dish of London eatery.
8-13 Bird Street, Marylebone, W1U 1BU
Tel: 020 7518 8080
Category: Thai
Travel: Bond Street tube
Times: Meals served noon-11pm Mon-Thur; noon-11.30pm Fri, Sat; noon-10pm Sun
Price: Main courses £5.50-£10.90
Credit cards: AmEx, MC, V
Child facilities: Babies and children admitted
Disabled: toilet
All reader reviews by SS
Busaba Eathai
I went to Busaba on a friend's recommendation. 3 of us went towards the end of the lunch rush. The atmosphere was buzzing although the down point of that is I had to shout to be heard. It didn't really bother me that we shared one big table with others. However it did get annoying that the guy sitting on the same bench as me persisted in treating it like a see-saw, rocking it back and forth.

The food on the whole was of a good quality. My friends enjoyed their Thai green curry and chicken curry. We ordered Thai fishcakes, Thai calamari and the not so Thai prawns in breadcrumbs. The calamari was good, tender and not over-cooked. The fishcakes I wasn't too keen on. They had a strange taste to them. I couldn't make it out. I had a pad see ew to follow, which had was tasty and generous with seafood, but the noodles looked and tasted like a 40p packet of instant noodles.

The guy who took our order was friendly and polite. However, the service from one particular guy was shocking. We had ordered all our drinks at the same time, my friends' lemonades arrived first. My bottle of water was no where to be seen. I remained patient, until I had seen another group sat down after us get their drinks. When I enquired to a different waiter, I got a very rude and stroppy, "the drinks come seperately", before he stomped off. Our food arrived and my water was still yet to make an appearance until our original waiter noticed and apologised.

Busaba is a bit hit and miss. It's ok but not sure I'd go back in a hurry

Tuesday, September 02, 2008
Overall rating
Food 6 | Service 3 | Atmosphere 7 | Value for money 6

Avoid at all costs! I know it's a place for a cheap eat, but that doesn't mean one should compromise on a decent dining experience. The staff looked miserable. The floor, table and chairs looked like they hadn't ever seen soap and water. There was a strong odour lingering in the restaurant which was really off-putting. The food was almost edible. However, the portions were very generous. But with many cheap little Japanese places in and around Soho I would rather spend my money elsewhere.

Friday, August 29, 2008
Overall rating
Food 1 | Service 0 | Atmosphere 0 | Value for money 1

Ran Restaurant
Having never tried Korean cuisine before, I was excited to try something new. I wasn't disappointed.

I went with a friend who had been to Ran on many occasions who was very familiar with the food. I got introduced to dishes like kimchi pancakes and beef sashimi and loved it!

The staff were polite and friendly. They were attentive when cooking our food on the bbq grill at our table.

It's not an intimate atmosphere nor a buzzy one. "Flat" is the only way I can describe it. However, don't let that put you off because the food is delicious although a bit pricey.

Be prepared to master Korean chopsticks. Something I was a bit rubbish at, even though I've used Chinese chopsticks all my life.

Tuesday, June 03, 2008
Overall rating
Food 9 | Service 9 | Atmosphere 5 | Value for money 6

Cha Cha Moon
After reading about Alan Yau's latest project some time ago, I'd been looking forward to going to Cha Cha Moon for a while.

From the outside, one wouldn't be able to tell it's a restaurant. It looks more like a club, with its discreet, dark entrance.

Although there were only three of us in our party, we ordered plenty to share. At £3.50 per dish, there's no need to be frugal. The staff are happy to provide bowls for you to share.

The ho fun was particularly good. But was a bit disappointed with the smoked chicken lao mein. I couldn't taste the smokey flavour of the chicken. Overall the food seemed a little overly salty.

The portions are a little small compared to other HK style diners, but for £3.50 it's a fair price.

Food didn't take too long to arrive, however, we did go about 6pm, just before it started to get busy.

A good place for a quick meal while shopping in and around Carnaby Street.

Monday, June 02, 2008
Overall rating
Food 8 | Service 8 | Atmosphere 8 | Value for money 8

Peninsula Chinese Restaurant
This is my favourite place for dim-sum. All made on the premises and not heated up from frozen packets like a lot of places that serve dim-sum. Great value for money too. I often come here with my family and we can eat for less than £30 for 5 adults, all with big appetites! The quality is not compromised at all. I'd even go as far as saying the dim-sum here is far better than the dim-sum you get in Hong Kong. The Peninsula offers a comfortable dining experience. The restaurant is spacious, so the tables aren't too close together. A good place to take big groups too because they have large round tables, which is much more sociable than long narrow tables offered in a lot of other restaurants. Forget going to Chinatown because there isn't a place that rivals the dim-sum here.

Thursday, March 20, 2008
Overall rating
Food 10 | Service 8 | Atmosphere 8 | Value for money 9

Kulu Kulu Sushi (Brewer Street)
An adequate place for a quick bite. Not a good place to take a group of friends beacuse the place is tiny and you're made to feel rushed. Plates off the conveyer belt are priced according to the pattern on the plate, which was sometimes confusing, rather than being colour coded like Yo Sushi. But the prices are cheap. Wouldn't recommend this place for first time sushi goers because the menu is only for food you order and doesn't describe what food is on the belt. So you often end up guessing at what you pick up off the belt. The decor is a bit tired looking. The waiting staff are friendly, however the manager wasn't too friendly or helpful when they made a mistake with our order. However that hasn't put me off going there again if I ever need a quick, cheap bite to eat.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008
Overall rating
Food 6 | Service 5 | Atmosphere 2 | Value for money 8

Zizzi (The O2)
Came here on a Sunday night. It wasn't particularly busy, quite a few empty tables, yet it took over 15 mins for someone to take our order. Throughout our time there it was difficult to get the attention of any staff as they were often seen standing around gossiping to each other. Yet, staff were friendly when we eventually got their attention. Pasta and pizza were good. Wasn't keen on the apple crumble. The crumble mixture was way too sweet with big grains of sugar. Brace yourself for the tropical temperature inside the restaurant. Most probably due to the wood oven, but other zizzi's don't seem to have the same problems.

Saturday, March 01, 2008
Overall rating
Food 7 | Service 5 | Atmosphere 5 | Value for money 6

Chiquito Mexican Grill & Bar
Went to Chiquito's last night with a group of friends. We started off with drinks in the bar before heading upstairs for dinner. Down to some bizarre policy, we were only allowed to get cocktails at Happy Hour prices from the downstairs bar, despite there being a bar upstairs. So we had to go downstairs and back up again a number of times for our drinks.

The food was medicore. I had the BBQ combo, the ribs and chicken were drowned in the overly salty BBQ sauce.

Our bill came to £96 for 6 people, not including drinks. They added a 10% service charge to our bill, which we were not happy paying, due to the fact that we had to get our own drinks and the service wasn't great. We rounded the bill up to £100, only for the waiter to come back and say we hadn't paid the whole bill and that he would have to substitute the rest of the service charge out of his own pocket.

We informed him that the service charge was optional and didn't have to pay it if we didn't want to. The manager was called out, who was friendly and said that it wasn't a problem if we didn't want to pay the whole service charge. I asked if the waiter had to pay the rest, to which she informed me this wouldn't be the case. All in all, a good place for a drink with friends in the bar because of the lively atmosphere, but wouldn't recommend the restaurant.

Friday, February 22, 2008
Overall rating
Food 5 | Service 4 | Atmosphere 7 | Value for money 6

Absolutely love this place. The decor oozes 1930's Shanghai glamour. Even the toilets have pretty sinks! The food is amazing and well presented. The emphasis is on quality rather than quantity and is superior to typical Chinese restaurants. I could happily eat the wasabi prawns and crystal noodles all day. The service is friendly and unobtrusive. The atmosphere is comfortable and relaxing. It's very difficult to find a good Chinese restaurant of this calibre without paying extortionate prices. Excellent quality food at good prices. Can't wait for my next visit!

Tuesday, February 19, 2008
Overall rating
Food 10 | Service 10 | Atmosphere 10 | Value for money 10

Bento Cafe
Great food at a good price. The sushi is really fresh and of excellent quality. It's really well made. Service could come with a smile but don't let that put you off because the food alone is worth the visit. The ebi-fry and calamari are particularly delicious. Give the home-made black sesame ice-cream a try too. This is the place to go if you're craving Japanese food.

Monday, February 18, 2008
Overall rating
Food 10 | Service 7 | Atmosphere 8 | Value for money 10

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Pad Thai
Busaba Calamari
Prawn fried rice
Coconut Juice
Sticky rice pudding
8-13 Bird Street, Marylebone, W1U 1BU
Tel: 020 7518 8080
Category: Thai
Travel: Bond Street tube
Times: Meals served noon-11pm Mon-Thur; noon-11.30pm Fri, Sat; noon-10pm Sun
Price: Main courses £5.50-£10.90
Credit cards: AmEx, MC, V
Child facilities: Babies and children admitted
Disabled: toilet
by SSCap September 17, 2008
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