TOKI is a member of the Leylaty Group of restaurants, this alone raises ones expectations. From the outside you would be forgiven to think the building was just another part of Leylaty’s Wedding Hall. There really isn’t a lot that makes the venue stand out. But the exterior subtlety is perhaps intentional and once you get inside, the interior is anything but understated. Lavish and elaborately decorated, you are confronted by fabric lined ceilings, classical chandeliers, arabesque pillars, and glass topped tables throughout the restaurant.
Ornate wood screens and plants divide the main entrance from the separate rooms which make up TOKI, while dozens of staff stand to attention waiting on your every need.
On arrival we were shown to our pre-booked table, and as a party of four we were taken to a perhaps all too large and round table that could have actually have seated up to six. The table was so big that I wondered how sharing dishes would actually be possible.
Before I had time to think, I noticed the large round disc in the center of the table, the waiter then brought over some prawn crackers and complimentary dips and proceeded to demonstrate the spinning table to the group. The disc could be spun fairly easily, allowing those ‘out of reach’ dishes on the other side of the table to almost instantly appear before you, a great idea, which worked effortlessly.
As our guests were actually from the Far East, we were keen to make sure that they enjoyed the meal, and interested to see whether what was served at TOKI would live up to the fare that they might find at home. They weren’t disappointed.
The waiter kindly provided us all with menus, and in addition to taking our orders he also made some helpful suggestions. We chose to start with some Chinese vegetarian spring rolls, prawn dumplings, dragon shrimp balls, and some chicken satay. To drink we ordered fresh orange and bottle of water.
While some of the party were a masters in the art of using chopsticks (not surprisingly) another who had not yet mastered their use chose to stick to the cutlery, which was also provided at the table.
The spring rolls were not that different from what I had tried elsewhere, however the dumplings were very good, not too soggy, and served steamed in a traditional Chinese bamboo basket which I hadn’t seen since my last trip to Hong Kong.
The dragon shrimp balls were deep fried, and perhaps a dish for the more adventurous, as they were flavored with a fair amount of chili. The chicken satay was excellent, and came with the usual accompaniment of peanut sauce, which went down well with the entire group.
After finishing off the last of the dumplings, our mains began to arrive; we had ordered half a crispy duck at the advice of our waiter. who suggested it was more than enough for four, this was true enough. The duck came to our table in one piece, but the waiters kindly took it to the side to shred it before serving. This came with wafer thin pancakes that were almost translucent, along with the usual spring onions and hoisin sauce.
The pancakes were followed by dishes of beef cooked in black bean sauce, a portion of chicken cashew nuts and two varieties of rice; steamed and egg fried rice. All were pretty good, I personally preferred the beef dish over the chicken, as it was slightly less sticky.
When it came time to look at the deserts menu we found our party was too full to eat any more, so we chose to end the evening with some green tea. All in all, TOKI is an excellent venue to entertain clients, beautiful atmosphere, great service, and most importantly good food.Toki,
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