Since making made its debut at the Dorsett Hotel in Shepherd’s Bush, Chinese-owned Shikumen followed up with branches in Ealing and Finchley – so the new venue will be its first in central London.
The Shepherd’s Bush original wins praise for “consistently delicious” cooking – particularly “fantastic dim sum” – from the new Harden’s Survey. But there are complaints about the “cavernous” and unattractive dining-room – so respondents will be pleased to learn that the Aldgate branch will be smaller, and have spectacular views over 18th-century St Botolph’s church.
The indications are that it will specialise in seafood. Unusually for a Chinese restaurant, it will also be open for breakfast, to meet the needs of jet-lagged travellers, early City networkers and weekend brunch fans.
The Dorsett Hotel, part of an Asian-owned group expanding its London presence, is scheduled to open at the same time as Shikumen in the contemporary Matrix building. It will also have a Vingt-Quatre (VQ) late-night diner.