Ping Pong Restaurant – London Southbank

Following on from the Tate Modern post, Miss Pinky and I went to find food. We passed a few restaurants, Miss Pinky said her favourite food is Chinese food. I eat it all the time, so it’s second nature to me. I actually enjoy other Asian foods, Indian, Japanese, Korean… and even the odd Vietnamese or Thai food… So what to eat? We passed Feng Sushi, which I have never been into before, and then it was decision time… It was Ping Pong in the end, which wasn’t very busy… ¬,¬… Should’ve persuaded Miss Pinky to eat Japanese…
Outside Ping Pong in Southbank

I have dined at Ping Pong in Southbank a few times, and I never seem to learn my lesson when I’m there! The concept of Ping Pong’s dim sum dining is ok for those who have never tried out dim sum before, and they serve this all day long. But to be honest I actually dislike dining in Ping Pong. It is a very different style from an actual yum cha experience. So take away the Chinese waiters and waitresses but keep the Chinese chefs, and order food using the piece of paper that they give you…

So firstly, we had to wait for a seat. It was a little empty except for the outside dining area as it was very hot that day! Usually they would ask us if we have dined there before, but that didn’t happen on this occasion, and I had forgotten what to do. There was a big bamboo basket in front of us, and I took out the ordering paper and pencil. Then Miss Pinky and I had a long look for dumplings with no prawns. It’s hard. As most of the dumplings on the set menu have prawns in it! Anyway, it took quite a bit of time for someone to actually come and serve us. I had to eye one of the waiters to get their attention. It’s hard getting attention these days… only joking… get too much sometimes!!

I had ordered a set menu, the Super 8, which is served only on weekdays 12 – 5 pm. But unfortunately I was told they couldn’t serve it on that day (which was not stated on their menu)… Bank Holiday Monday is a weekday right, or would you consider it as part of the weekend? A bank holiday is actually a public holiday and not part of the weekend… Strange. I had a look at their website as well just to make sure… Not stated there either that I couldn’t order the Super 8 on a bank holiday!! Not happy at all…!! I had to order another set menu… The Healthy Selection… ¬,¬ But thankfully we ordered a few more items…

First was my drink (Miss Pinky had a Heineken beer). I had a lychee and ginger iced tea. It was a bit weak for my standards. Needed a bit more sugar. Jasmine tea was a bit too weak for me too. It was like tasting one of those new Ribena flavours. A very weak iced tea. 😦 I actually recommend their flower tea…
Lychee and Ginger iced tea

Miss Pinky ordered the Ping Pong Selection, and this is her food…

Miss Pinky ate one of the spring rolls before I could take a picture!!

Small selection of dim sum – I ate 3 of these!!

 Miss Pinky didn’t touch her rice pot! She was too full!!

Chicken and Mushroom rice pot

And as you know I ordered the Healthy Selection…. It was ok. There could have been more in the sticky rice parcel. I didn’t like the soup much, a little spicy for a Chinese soup, but drank it all because it was supposed to be healthy. The broccoli was actually quite nice!

My healthy selection of dim sum

It’s supposed to be wonton soup… really?!

Steamed broccoli

The additional items we ordered were:

Cha siu baau (BBQ pork bun). This was good.
Cha siu baau

Beef dumplings. Miss Pinky had these to replace the ones she couldn’t eat. She didn’t like the edameme beans added on top…

Nice looking beef dumplings

And this is the new seabass dumpling which I had. This was a bit too fishy for my liking. But I dipped into some soy sauce, which took away some of the fishy taste and smell…

New Seabass Dumpling

Overall the food was filling, but I’m afraid Ping Pong always disappoints me. It is a nice introduction to people wanting to try out dim sum without having to go to a real Chinese restaurant and having to order in Chinese. Their ideas of new dim sum is great, and I do like their concept of introducing new food items. Service, otherwise could be better. However, food here is genuinely expensive compared to the food you can find in China Town. The bill came to £44.39. Humph! That’s an average of £4.19 per dish minus the drinks.

My geeky rating: 3.5/5 (from all my experiences put together at this restaurant)

Good points:
– Food is filling
– Nice introduction to dim sum for those who haven’t got a clue about them

Bad points:
– Expensive compared to China Town (my main complaint really!)
– Service could be better

Address: Festival Terrace Southbank Centre Belvedere Road, London SE1 8XX

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2 thoughts on “Ping Pong Restaurant – London Southbank

  1. Heheh, I understand, a lot of my friends enjoy going to Ping Pong because they can get a variety of dimsum without having to choose. But it is expensive for a “Chinese” dining experience.


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