I first saw Bobby on Sunday brunch and his colourful, likeable character immediately caught my attention. The way he cooks is so simple yet effective. He's full of passion and it's great to see him promote Asian food to a wider audience showing how fresh, simple and tasty the cuisine can be. Not only is he a fantastic cook, but he is also one hell of a funny guy, always having a joke here and there, not afraid to take the mick out of other chefs (obviously in a light hearted way).
|Food punk with Bobby Chinn (excuse the photo bomb from the guy at the back )|
When he first spoke of his restaurant I knew I immediately had to go and check it out for myself and it was definitely one of the best dining experiences I've had.
I went in thinking that his restaurant would reflect the kind of person he is, but boy was I wrong. I thought it would be a loud, hustle and bustle kind of environment. Instead it was cosy, sophisticated and had that high end look to it. You would definitely go to this restaurant if you wanted to impress your spouse. Not only that but his restaurant has history. It occupies the former site of The 2 i's coffee bar, otherwise known as the Birthplace of British Rock'n'Roll and the modern pop industry. The 'Rock'n'roll Wall' has been preserved and maintained inside The House of Ho.
So what about the food?
The House of Ho offers a wide range of Asian cuisine including rolls, salads, steamed, grilled, braised and wok tossed all inspired by Bobby's background in Vietnamese cooking. All of the dishes on the menu are great for sharing around which means its a great opportunity to sample a little bit of everything off the menu and that's exactly what I did. Click below to see the menu.
Here's what I had:
|Wok tossed grass fed angus fillet marinated in lemon grass|
|Pickled vegetables rolls (herbs & rice noodles served with a peanut sauce)|
|Crispy Vietnamese 7 spice marinated squid|
|Pork cheeks braised in Ho's spice blend (very sorry about the picture quality)|
|Smokey aubergine in a warm scallion vinaigrette, scallions and crispy shallots|
|Vegetable curry, cellophane noodles, paddy herbs and chopped peanuts|
|Jasmine steamed rice|
I thought all of the dishes were awesome. They were all perfectly balanced , light, clean and had bags of flavour.
If I had to pick a favourite dish it would have to be the pork cheeks. The meat was tender and just fell off with the slightest touch of the fork. Also the broth reminded me of a dish that I had in Malaysia called Bah kut teh. It was fragrant and flavoursome and it really gave the pork a different dimension.
The one dish that really surprised me was the smoked aubergine as it just melted in the mouth almost like a puree . The smokiness wasn't overpowering and I could definitely taste the natural flavour of the aubergine cutting through it.
The House of Ho is a restaurant that I will go to on a regular basis. The prices are affordable, the service is spot on, the food is bloody fantastic and Bobby himself is a top dude. His restaurant is a fantastic place to go if you're planning a date night or having a group night out. Its for everyone and I highly recommend it if you're looking for Asian food with an edge.