As a first time diner at Ping Pong I found that the exciting deco, low lighting, busy atmosphere, and burst of colour shining from the dishes created the feel of an exotic resort far from busy London streets.
The warm welcoming atmosphere automatically makes you feel like you will be looked after for the evening. We were greeted and seated by our waiter Antonio and introduced to the lovely Jana, the newly appointed general manager of the Bow Bells House branch, which gave the visit a personal touch.
The evening began with Ping Pong’s longan baijiu firecracker cocktail inspired by the Chinese New Year, a refreshing flavoursome cocktail which was an absolutely stunning mix of flavours.
Antonio introduced us to Ping Pong’s new seasonal specials. Each dish beautifully presented, all were brought out as soon as they were ready and lined the table like a regal banquet. If you are visiting Ping Pong with a few friends I would recommend that everyone orders a few different dishes, as this is the perfect opportunity to try something new. This is exactly what we did by ordering the following:
Xo scallop and vegetable dumpling, with carrots, celery, chives, mushroom and tofu in spinach wheat pastry with chilli scallop dressing. One for the fish lovers, this perfectly cooked dumpling was bursting with the tastes of fresh vegetables.
We were also treated to a traditional Shanghainese soup dumpling, roast lamb spring roll with spicy sesame sauce, crab wanton, and griddled Portobello mushrooms in barbecue sauce.
A particular favourite was the soup dumpling, or Shanghai xiaolongbao, which featured pork in a wheat flour pastry with ginger and chinkiang vinegar. This was a succulent, elegant dish with beautiful textures. The soy barbecue-coated giant mushrooms were also an excellent addition.
That wasn’t all though! The other dishes we tried were the beef gyoza dumpling, monkfish and lime dumpling, beef fillet dumpling, and the old favourite, a duck spring roll. Served in fresh green spinach wheat pastry, the beef dumpling was another standout dish, with tender chunks of meat that melted in the mouth.
The monkfish and lime dumpling surprised with me with a texture I hadn’t come across before, with the soft translucent pastry coated in a light glaze.
During our courses we also indulged in Ping Pong’s exotic cocktails, all showcasing an incredible mix of well-balanced ingredients. And somehow we found room for dessert.
As a chocolate lover I chose the chocolate coolant, a chocolate pudding filled with dark chocolate, served with vanilla ice cream. This was more than a dessert, this was an incredible masterpiece of rich, smooth, creamy flavours and should have come with a warning! Definitely one of the best desserts I have ever had.
We also tried the baked ginger cake with sultanas, cinnamon and vanilla ice cream. This was a lot less rich, but still refreshing and full of festive flavours.
Ping Pong doesn’t hold back with their portions, they feed you more than enough to walk away feeling full but planning your next visit back. I’ll definitely be planning mine soon.
Ping Pong – Bow Bells House
Unit 7-9 Bow Bells House, 1 Bread Street, London, EC4M 9BE