It’s a simple dining space, augmented by nice cornicing, and an eclectic array of artwork. It seats around twelve, with some space for the frequent customers popping in to order and/or collect takeout.
I’d picked a busy evening, so the kitchen was working at a furious pace. Even then, things were a little slow. They had a real plate-spinning task to keep both sit-in and takeaway customers pleased. At one point they ran out of rice. If ever there was an indicator of busy a night, that was it.
From their considerable range, I opted for hot and sour soup to start, then hakka beef with noodles to follow. It’s a BYO place, but I was very happy to go with tea as my liquid accompaniment.
After decent prawns crackers had been brought, my soup was soon with me. It was a restrained and measured hot and sour, with good flavour and a rich, dark colour. It had none of the blasting heat excesses of some hot and sours, which for my tastes this evening, was good news.
It took a while for the main course to emerge, but it was entirely worth the wait. The hakka beef was an outstanding dish. It was so soft, tender and delicate that it was a test for my chopstick work to pick up the chunks without them falling apart. The rich and meaty sauce was nicely spiced and expertly seasoned. The noodle accompaniment was appropriately simple, allowing the beef to take centre stage.
A plate of orange segments were brought, to conclude things. This wasn’t something I’d encountered since half-time in the last rugby match I played. They provided a nicely refreshing palette cleanser.
So overall, B & D’s was really good. The pace of service was a touch pedestrian, but it was always friendly and attentive. The quality of the dishes on offer was entirely pleasing, making it one of the best places I’ve visited for Chinese food, in the city. I’d recommend a visit, at your earliest convenience.
Blythe scores B & D’s
4/5 for food
3.5/5 for presentation
3.5/5 for setting
3.5/5 for service
giving an overall 14.5/20
I ate: hot and sour soup; hakka beef; noodles
I drank: tea
I wore: new black brogues
Total bill: £14.30