Tel: +44 (0)20 7589 6627
Address: 1st Floor, Paxtons Head, 153 Knightsbridge, London SW1X 7PA
Cuisine Type: Asian
Pan Asian Restaurant is situated above a pub that was heaving on a Friday night. It wasn’t busy when we walked in, but did begin to fill up with diners while we were there, many of them escaping from the pub downstairs. Décor is of eastern influence, lime green walls and lots of timber. The huge wooden windows give the place a feeling of space and airiness. Seating consists of three large square communal tables each accommodating twelve.
We began with a starter of chicken yakitori (£3.95) – three skewers of chicken, crisp on the outside and tender on the inside – perfect; and a starter of sweet garlic and aubergine (£3.35) that literally melted in your mouth, though a tad too oily for those watching their weight. Prawn crackers (£1.55) were suitably spicy and served with a sweet chilli sauce. Amongst the other diners, won ton wraps (£3.45) and Japanese king prawns (£6.25) seemed popular choices.
We shared pickled mustard chicken (£6.35) and a Thai beef salad (£6.35) as a main course and a couple of large bowls of jasmine rice (£1.35). The chicken was hot and tender although we struggled to find any traces of the mustard leaves mentioned on the menu. The beef salad consisted of slices of tender and juicy steak served over a concoction of peppers, red onions and chillies. Rice servings were very generous but it was slightly undercooked. Orders around us included red snapper and sambal (£7.55) and nasi goreng (£5.85). Both looked mouth watering.
Unfortunately we were too full up to sample any of the desserts. Choices included sorbet, banana fritters, pancakes and coconut pudding. All priced under £4.00.
The wine list consisted of three whites and three reds (as well as champagne), served by the glass and bottle, or a small choice of Japanese beer and sake. The menu did mention that a further selection of drinks was available on request, presumably from the pub below. My glass of red wine wasn’t spectacular, but then again it was the least expensive on offer at £2.70 for a small glass.
Pan Asian Restaurant is a little hidden gem and such good value considering its location. Service was fast, courteous and non-intrusive. The communal seating would suit both small and large groups; one of the tables at least was allocated to non-smokers. The place could do with a bit of sprucing up; the table legs and skirting boards looked in need of a fresh coat of paint and the paper menus had seen better days. However, such things can be overlooked considering most starters fell below the £4 mark and main courses below £7. Not bad for a Friday night in Knightsbridge!