Restaurant: BAO – Windmill Street, London

Beef Shortrib BAO – £5.75

The long awaited BAO experience! If you, like us, have walked passed the Soho branch just off Carnaby Street and watched people stand across the road waiting for the magical spot inside that small but apparently worth it BAO restaurant, wondered what delicious treat had got everyone willing to wait for ages outside. Of course we had to try, but over the cause of some attempts, we just couldn’t justify waiting in such a long queue.

We were tipped off from a friend of ours that they’ve heard they’re other branch in Fitzrovia was much quieter, we were sceptical but on this day we were in no rush and had decided to take a nerve-racking cycle into Central London, we thought we’d give it a try and treat ourselves to a little something.

Confit Pork BAO – £5

To our surprise, especially on a Saturday afternoon, there were exactly two spots for us upstairs on their bar-like seating area. No waiting, no queues outside, it was perfect and we were so excited!

Once we were seated, we were handed out menu, which you fill out yourself, marking with a pencil of which item and the quantity of how much you wanted of each. With it being our first time, we had no idea what was what or anything. We were never asked if we’d been here before (yet the 4 girls beside us who came in after got asked..) even with trying to get their attention, we gave up and decided to wing it.

I, Jessica, wasn’t too hungry, so we opted to just try and share a BAO each and share a rice bowl. All dishes arrived in good timing, the two BAO’s first, followed by the rice dish. Don’t let the picture fool you, they were smaller than we had expected, but nevertheless so tasty and we could see why they were so popular. The rice bowl was just as good, so much flavour in such a little bowl.

Mackerel, Dried Tomato, Celery Chi Shiang Rice Bowl – £6.75

If you’re looking for a quick bite to eat, nothing too much, we would recommend it but if you’re super hungry and on a budget, this wouldn’t be the place for you as we mentioned the portions are not as big as we thought and although one is decent price, if you were to get enough to fill you, we don’t imagine it would be a budget meal.

Overall, we’d love to come back and try more on the menu, especially of the BAO’s themselves, but as you know service if very important to us, we didn’t feel we had any attention at any point of our visit. Regardless, we’d love to visit the other branches in the future.

Food: ★★★★

Customer service: ★★

Atmosphere: ★★★

Toilets: ★★★★

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  1. Llinos Thomas
    April 24, 2017 / 9:22 am

    Wow, sounds like this place is popular! I love how you review the toilets, I think it is so important and a poor toilet experience can ruin a restaurant for me.

    • Food and Baker
      April 27, 2017 / 6:39 pm

      It started as a joke, but we do feel like it was important too!Thank you for reading and commenting☺💓

  2. Lifethrough Tsg
    April 24, 2017 / 7:47 pm

    Haha I love that you review toilets too, so important! Glad the food was good, even if the atmosphere and service did let it down a little! I'm not from London and have literally never heard of a BAO 🙈Hayley x

    • Food and Baker
      April 27, 2017 / 6:41 pm

      Service is so important to us! You should find one near you or one that sells them!Thank you for reading and commenting☺💓

  3. Bronagh Ready
    April 24, 2017 / 9:06 pm

    I'm so happy to know I'm not the only one who judges a place by their toilets. I've not went back to amazing places just because of their toilets.This places food looks amazing as well!Bronaghwww.BronaghLoves.com

    • Food and Baker
      April 27, 2017 / 6:42 pm

      Toilets tell us a lot about the place!Thank you for reading and commenting☺💓

  4. Just Joelle
    April 29, 2017 / 8:20 pm

    I love how all the comments are now about the toilets haha! Dying to try BAO though, they look so yummy!Joelle Xwww.justjoelle.co.uk

    • Food and Baker
      May 6, 2017 / 8:06 pm

      HAAHAHA I know right! But toilets are very important, and you should try it, it was really good!Thank you for reading and commenting☺💓

  5. Charlotte Clark
    April 30, 2017 / 6:42 pm

    I definitely judge a place by its service too – it sounds annoying that they didn't ask if you knew what you were doing! It's interesting though that you fill out the menu yourself. I find it annoying sometimes when someone comes back after 30 seconds to ask what you want, so it'd be nice to choose in my own time!

    • Food and Baker
      May 6, 2017 / 8:08 pm

      Oh my, I hate it when peope ask what I want to drink before I even sit down. Like jhezze!Thank you for reading and commenting☺💓

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