LOTI Eats | Gouqi

This new high-end dim sum spot is giving our current favourites a run for their money

Yauatcha has always been our favourite spot for high-end dim sum in London – we’ve tried all the others but nothing has ever really come close to knocking it off top spot. But now we might just have a contender, the relatively new fine-dining Chinese restaurant Gouqi, which is located just off Trafalgar Square. 

Gouqi is the first solo restaurant from chef Tong Chee Hwee who spent a whopping 18 years running the Hakkasan group, which of course includes Yauatcha (and used to include the incredible HKK before it closed). So we were absolutely expecting good things from Gouqi, but we weren’t quite ready for just how good their dim sum is.

Unlike Yauatcha, the full dim sum menu at Gouqi is only available at lunchtimes (there’s a small platter in the evenings) so you’ll need to head there between 12pm and 2.30pm (3pm at weekends) for the full shebang. The dim sum is made in-house each day and you can really feel the freshness and quality of the ingredients with each one.

Highlights for us included the XO King Crab; the black truffle har gau; the pork and prawn wontons in chilli oil; the mushroom and truffle dumpling; and the charcoal venison puff. The absolute best, though, was the crispy eel cheung fun, a kind of deluxe successor to Yauatcha’s prawn and bean curd cheung fun, which is one of our all-time favourite dishes. The Xiao long bao tasted so good too but the only gripe there was that the skins were a little too thin – a remarkable feat of skill but they were just too thin to hold up to the weight of the liquid soup, so each of them burst upon picking up.

We went heavy on the dim sum, but there is of course a huge menu of other dishes to explore too, from lobster and king crab, to roast pork and chicken – we can’t wait to come back for the signature Peking duck (24 hours notice is required to order this). We did, however, try the excellent scallop fried rice, the braised Yu Xiang aubergine, and the super tender steak with black pepper sauce. Desserts are very decent too, including the yuzu, dragon fruit and cherry blossom roll; the mango, black sesame and passion fruit cake; and the dark chocolate, matcha and goji berry.

Service at Gouqi is slick and on point, and we loved the space too, which has some cosy curtained-off booths and a a great private dining room. With all apologies to our old flame Yauatcha, when it comes to high-end dim sum in London, Gouqi has to be our new number one. 

25-34 Cockspur Street, St. James’s, London SW1Y 5BN