Tucked away in the beautiful area of Notting Hill is where you’ll find ULI, an Asian-fusion restaurant that uses traditional techniques to create each dish from scratch. Blending together flavours from Singapore, China, Thai and Malaysia, ULI takes guests on a journey of tastes and scents.
Rain or shine, make sure you reserve a spot on the outdoor terrace. Made entirely from glass you can watch the world go by without being at the mercy of the unpredictable London weather. Once seated, a lychee martini or two won’t go astray while you peruse the menu.
Asian food is traditionally designed for sharing, so don’t be shy and pick a bunch of different items off the menu for you and your group to try. We started off with the Crispy Calamari, Salt and Pepper Crab and Spicy Scallops, all of which tasted super fresh. Our favourite would have to be the Spicy Scallops, fried in a crunchy batter, topped with a zingy sauce with a touch of heat and presented beautifully in the shell with slices of spring onion and chilli.
Being two girls who seriously miss Dumplings ‘R’ Us (sneaky Adelaide reference there), we’re on a mission to find good dumplings around London that compare. The Prawn and Chive Dumplings from ULI were traditional Chinese Har Gow dumplings, featuring a generous filling wrapped in a light outer and served with a rich sauce; a different style to the ones we were obsessed with back home but seriously tasty all the same.
We also couldn’t go past the Crispy Aromatic Duck, served with pancakes, scallions, cucumber and duck sauce for us to assemble and nibble away on. The duck came out on a large platter (we ordered a half duck) and was a delicious mix of soft and tender pulled meat and crispy bits that added some moreish texture.
For mains we picked one dish each to share, accompanied by some Egg Fried Rice. Black Bean Beef, ULI Coconut Curry with Chicken and Szechuan Chilli Prawns were ordered, which was probably too much for just the three of us! The serving sizes are quite generous and you get a good helping of seafood or meat, so there’s definitely plenty to go around for everyone. Our favourite was probably the prawn dish, coming with plenty of battered and saucy prawns in the dish for everyone to chow down on, as well as a mix of crunchy vegetables to balance out the richness of the sauce.
Kristen’s new obsession is currently Mochi Ice Cream. Taking the traditional Japanese rice cake sweet and filling the centre with ice cream, a satisfying textural contrast happens between the chewy outer and soft inner. Mel went for the Toffee Banana Fritter. Taking the tried and true fried banana dessert, ULI added their own signature touch by presenting them as four battered and fried banana balls coated in sticky toffee and rolled in sesame seeds. Extremely decadent, they were the perfect way to finish off the meal for any sweet tooth.
As well as seeing a steady flow of customers fill the restaurant throughout the night, ULI was also popular with food delivery drivers, meaning it must also be a favourite spot for the locals. If you’re keen to check out this culinary treat, you can make a reservation at their website here.