Old-school oriental glamor with a new-age take on Chinese fine dining
The sole dining establishment at newly opened Six Senses Duxton, Yellow Pot prides itself as a modern Chinese restaurant and bar that puts wellness and sustainability at all points of the food process, first. A focus on sustainably driven Chinese cuisine is well in line with the hotel’s Eat with Six Senses philosophy—avoiding the usual unhealthy additives of Chinese cooking in favor of fresh, natural ingredients; though with how the food tastes, you’d be none the wiser.
The hype: The sole dining establishment at newly opened Six Senses Duxton, Yellow Pot prides itself as a modern Chinese restaurant and bar that puts wellness and sustainability at all points of the food process, first. A focus on sustainably driven Chinese cuisine is well in line with the hotel’s Eat with Six Senses philosophy—avoiding the usual unhealthy additives of Chinese cooking in favor of fresh, natural ingredients; though with how the food tastes, you’d be none the wiser.
The vibe: After entering the hotel, the journey to the restaurant and bar is a labyrinth of black, gold and yellow; a breathtaking aesthetic marrying exquisite oriental trimmings (think large golden fans) and an 18th Century English air—the wallpaper all around is from British designer Anouska Hempel’s personal collection. Embellishing the space are the namesake yellow pots, while black lacquered wood screens carve out private nooks for more intimate dining. You can almost hear the Matchmaker’s stern call: “Now, pour the tea.”
The food: Heading up the kitchen is Chef Sebastian Goh, who deftly navigates the perils of oily Chinese food with indulgent plates that get away with flavor, even without relying on additives. The tart Chilled Organic Vine-ripened Tomatoes ($8) for example, sourced from a farm in Malaysia, are free from its natural sugary lectins; and instead infused with preserved Li Hing plum for a burst of sour citrus. If you’d rather a classic Chinese soup to start, get the Hot & Sour Soup ($12); ever belly-warming with its controlled dose of Sichuan chili oil.
Yellow Pot’s star dishes, though, are certainly its meats. The Seared Pork Cheek ($12) is an instant fave—partly for its juiciness, but also for its thorough marination in cumin, chili and mango. For best main, it’s a tie-up between the Wok-seared Organic Grass-Fed Beef Tenderloin ($36)—delicate cubes of beef in Himalayan salt, sweetened with honeyed Tellicherry peppercorn sauce—and the Roast Duck ($32 for half) in fermented bean curd marinade. Perfectly crisped skin gives way to soft moist flesh; it’s how every duck should be prepared.
Since the menu is intended for sharing, order the spicy, tangy Braised Sweet & Sour Eggplant or Braised White Cabbage ($12) for your obligatory veg; Chef Goh reinvents the latter with conpoy and wolfberries soaked in Shaoxing wine—and we’re delighted to report that Shaoxing wine does indeed save even the most boring of dishes. The Stir-fried Mee Sua ($18) is divine too—light, fragrant and further seasoned with a special secret Nanyang Sauce made locally.
The drinks: No self-respecting Chinese restaurant would be caught dead without a staggering selection of teas, and Yellow Pot’s, unsurprisingly, is large, in charge, and curated by Yixing Xuan Teahouse—a family-run teahouse just around the corner from the hotel. The Dian Hong Gold ($12) is a rejuvenating black tea of golden buds and dark tea leaves, but of course there are your standard Pu Ers, green teas and Oolongs too (from $12-$22 for a pot).
Tea aside, a diverse bar menu also showcases signature cocktails and top-shelf spirits, curated by Beverage Consultant Kamil Foltan. If you’re planning on drinking, try a cocktail—as they’re infused with herbal ingredients and traditional Chinese influences. We weren’t quite taken with the syrupy sweet Escape to Kaifeng ($22)—house-made chrysanthemum cordial and herbal Tanqueray Gin, inspired by the flower of the Kaifeng city—but we’re certainly intrigued to return for a second shot at it.
Why you’ll be back: Yellow Pot’s bold opening comes right smack in the middle of resurfacing interest in (reinventing) Chinese cuisine. It could easily get lost in the crowd, but the restaurant holds its own with intensely flavored plates and its commitment to making you feel good, not guilty, when you indulge. The ornate set-up within the converted shophouse is a major draw, but one thing’s for sure: we’ll be back for that duck.