Caramel - a new Chelsea staple
There‘s been a lot going on in Chelsea of late and Caramel is the newest restaurant to create a stir.
14 November 2018
Anyone who’s up on the NYC food scene will know that the queues at RedFarm are formidable, often lasting upwards of three hours. People are desperate to get a taste of a menu that splices classic Cantonese/Hunanese cuisine with red, white and blue American influences and a dash of Southeast Asia mixed in for good measure. Now, there’s a chance that you may still have to queue, but you won’t need to book a trip to Manhattan to experience RedFarm, as Ed Schoenfeld has opened an outpost in the heart of Covent Garden.
Situated next to another feted American import – Balthazar – on Russell Street, the dining room at Red Farm is stripped back and rustic. Light wooden floors, tables and chairs have an identical hue. Exposed brick walls are whitewashed and support iron gantries reminiscent of railway luggage racks and, most notably, there are elements of jacquard spread throughout. The laidback room sets the scene for a dining experience that is simultaneously playful and innovative.
A trip to RedFarm wouldn’t be complete without the Pac-Man dumplings – supple, springy shrimp har gau made to look like the arcade ghosts awaiting the gaping maw of a tempura sweet potato Pac-Man. They are as delicious as they are fun. A pastrami (from Monty’s Deli) egg roll and (perfectly medium rare) cheeseburger spring rolls mish-mash east and west to delirious, delicious effect. Oversized xiao long bao dumplings arrive with an abbreviated candystriped straw to sip up the soup. Crispy shrimp-stuff chicken overlaid with golden sheets of chicken crackling resembles pork belly in both form and texture, with a beguiling flavour. For dessert, order a pair of custard bao, brushed with a hint of lardo for crispness and flavour.
RedFarm delivers on its NYC legacy – offering a new and sometimes subversive take on Chinese cuisine.
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