Monday, 31 October 2011

Red Chilli, Leeds (revisited)

On my last visit to Red Chilli it was a little below par. Things that should have been a full on assault on the senses were a little dull, a little mild. A return visit on Saturday found it right back on form, four of us had a corker of a meal.

I was dining with Red Chilli first-timers, attempting to persuade them that a few pints and a Sichuan feast was a fine alternative to a few pints and a curry. Friends duly persuaded. We'll be back.


Stir-fried french beans with chilli and minced pork is one of my all time favourite Chinese dishes. Heat-blistered beans, al dente, dripping in spicy, porky oil and covered in tender little nuggets of salty meat. Lush.


Gong bao diced chicken with peanuts and dried chilli comes doused in a sweet, spicy sauce. The peanuts and chicken provide a wonderful contrast in textures.


The only dish I'd never ordered before, stir fried frog's legs with big Grandma's chilli sauce. Sweet and spicy again, but this time with the inclusion of black beans which gave it a salty, slightly funky fermented edge. Impossible to eat with chopsticks this, fingers were a must. Messy, sticky fun.


The last, but very much not least of the big dishes, spicy hot poached mutton. A huge vat of broth packed with shards of meat, assorted greens, about a bulb of garlic and copious quantities of dried chillies and Sichuan peppercorns. Lip tingling, meaty, more-ish, sweat-inducing deliciousness.


And finally, a couple of plates of dumplings. They make these fresh so they actually turned up after everything else. The boiled ones were Beijing style minced pork and prawn, and were spot on. Perfectly cooked skins and a moist, fragrant filling.


The others were Guotie, Beijing style minced pork fried dumplings. Equally good skins and filling, and they got the crusty fried exterior just right too.

A fantastic meal all round, and great value. Prices on the menu may not look that cheap, but bear in mind everything is served in enormous portions. The mutton alone could probably have fed a family of four. We finished the lot, and stuffed to the gills toddled off to the next pub, where a bottle of wine was ordered due to lack of room for beer.

The bill came to £17 each including a beer apiece and plenty of boiled rice. We threw in £20 each and left it that, as the service was just as good as the food. It can be inconsistent, but on this form Red Chilli deserves all the accolades it gets. Brilliant.

9/10

6 Great George Street
Leeds
LS1 3DW

http://www.redchillirestaurant.co.uk/


Red Chilli on Urbanspoon

4 comments:

Leigh said...

I love those dumplings!!

Dave said...

Me too, could eat a plateful right now....

Bob Andrews said...

Those are on my top of all-time ultimate favorite Chinese food too! Especially the dumplings, which not only are delicious and nutritious, but also convenient. There is really a lot to love with Chinese food; most meals consist of complex carbs, protein and grain put together in one dish. Every penny you spent in this fantastic meal is truly worth it!

Bob Andrews @ Chili House SF

Anna said...

Not sure if you're into Moroccan food, but next time you're in Leeds go to Oranaise, LS6, Hyde Park Corner and order Royal CousCous! You can also take part in the burger challenge, but we both with my partner weren't able to eat the whole thing (one portion I mean). Bless

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