I recently won a competition courtesy of Leicester Square Films which entitled myself and one other to a meal at Spice Market in London.This has always been a place that I’ve admired on my regular jaunts to the far less pricey Wong Kei’s in London’s Chinatown.
On a cold evening after a full day at work, I decided that this would be the perfect time to go, especially as I had just returned from Berlin.
On first appearances, Spice Market is located as part of the eye catching W Hotel, hard to miss but giving little away as to the fun lurking behind its doors. We were greeted by a doorman who was friendly and assisted with us checking in our coats before being shown upstairs to the restaurant.
As we made our way upstairs, you get a chance to take in the interior of Spice Market, quite dimly lit with a lengthy bar and even more tables to cater for the regular city-types that head here. It isn’t intimidating at all and some customers are quite casually dressed or seemed to be out with colleagues and friends.
After being shown to our booth, it was time to take in the menu and select our bento preferences. We opted for the Classic Bento and Gourmet Bento along with two cocktails, Lychee Raspberry Bellini and Ginger Margarita.
Our drinks were served and we chatted whilst observing the restaurant and soaking up the buzzing atmosphere – it was pretty busy for a weekday evening. Staff seemed attentive to all, topping up drinks, clearing tables and ensuring that customers were thoroughly catered to – all of which would be expected in this type of venue.
In addition to our bento boxes, we had ordered a starter platter ‘The Spice Plate’ which was served first. Consisting of Lobster Summer Roll, Spiced Chicken Samosas and Fragrant Mushroom Egg Rolls to name a few, the platter was sufficient for two.
The starter was followed by our bento boxes which to be honest, I found a little disappointing. I had opted to have brown rice served with the ‘Classic Bento’ yet it was the rest of the box that I wasn’t impressed by. Containing Cod with Malaysian sauce, in all honesty it was so overpowering that I tried to leave as much of the sauce behind as possible. It simply didn’t work. On the other hand, the Gourmet box was far nicer, offering a more complimentary range of dishes.
Overall, we both really enjoyed the experience of Spice Market – fresh food, creative ingredients and excellent service and presentation. It does get busy during the evenings, but the layout is suitable to manage the volume. The seating style allows you to still enjoy a personal dining experience in your couple/ group and whether you’re planning just a drink or a meal, they’re likely to have something to suit your visit. Would I go again? Definitely, but I’d try something else on the menu.
Have you tried Spice Market in London, or any others around the world? I’d love to hear your opinions.