After enjoying a simply delicious crispy pollock-filled hirata bun from YumBun last week, it’s safe to say I’ve been lured into the one of the biggest food trends to have appeared in London this year. Steam hirata buns continue to boom and are increasingly making an appearance on menus at restaurants such as Flesh & Buns.
I’d heard lots about Flesh & Buns as a trendy, fun place to dine with equally as enjoyable food, so I booked us girls in for dinner one weekday evening. After a slight misunderstanding with our booking (the waitress had no knowledge of squaremeal.co.uk which we used to book) we were found a table and ordered some small but tasty cocktails. I also ordered chips n’ dips while I was waiting for the others to arrive. I loved the poppadom-like style of the chips and the avocado dip was pretty tasty too. The menu was explained to us and it was suggested that we order a number of dishes to share. My friend KK isn’t a sharing kind of girl so we decided to each choose our own meat ‘flesh’ and buns and those who wanted to, could swap. I went for the sirloin steak with red onion pickle, which was a risk considering I’m extremely fussy when it comes to steak and hate even the slightest fatty chew. The steak wasn’t amazing and I ended up having more of Kate’s crispy piglet belly than my own, but the BBQ sauce that accompanied it was delicious and went well with the steak, pork and duck.
The crispy piglet belly was by far my favourite ‘flesh’ of the evening. I expected a little more crunch due to the word crispy in the name but it was so tender and juicy I didn’t mind. Each meat dish came with two lovely and fluffy hirata buns and it was good fun filling our own, especially as this allowed me to overload on sweet BBQ sauce and miss out the salad – far too healthy for a Wednesday night! Although we were warned, each dish came out at a different time which was quite frustrating. Now, I understand the menu is designed for sharing but surely if one of you doesn’t want to share it isn’t too much of an ask to have the dishes arrive around the same time. We had all finished our buns by the time KK’s arrived which meant she was left eating alone!
There was plenty of meat left over after we had each eaten our two buns and there is the opportunity to order more, but we felt that two buns were quite enough and any more would have been too heavy. I was pretty full by this stage I couldn’t leave without taking a look at the dessert menu as I had heard good things and also I’d never had a dessert at an Asian eatery before. I decided to share the kinako doughnuts with Kelly and KK which was a great choice as there were three of them and they were huge. This explained the slightly higher than average pudding price of £8. The doughnuts were incredibly fresh and generously filled with a gorgeous caramel-like black custard with a hint of vanilla. A dusting of sugar similar to the doughnuts I’m used to (namely these favourites from St John’s) would have made them too sweet.
Jill and Kate shared the s’mores which were great fun and looked equally as tasty as our doughnuts. The s’mores came with a fire stove to toast our own so we actually felt like we were back sitting round a camp fire at Girl Guides and I had to refrain from breaking out into “kum ba yah my lord“. The marshmallows were melted on the fire and placed in-between two biscuits and a slab of green tea chocolate, creating a sweet gooey sandwich – the ultimate comfort treat! The task of creating our own s’more made this £8 dessert worth while.
The bill came to around £37 each which I thought was fairly expensive for the food but not the experience. You could certainly dine here for cheaper, by sharing the meat dishes between two and ordering extra buns so visiting on a budget wouldn’t be a problem. Did Flesh & Buns live up to it’s hype? Enough for me to return but the food didn’t blow me away enough to rebook straight away. All in all, Flesh & Buns is a fun place to to eat with friends; it’s trendy, the foods good and it’s different than your normal sit-down restaurant.
Living life, loving cake,
*PS: I can only apologise for the quality of my photos. Seriously in need of a new (wifi enabled) camera – please let me know if you know of a good one!