Thursday, October 20, 2011

Leluu Supper Club, London


Let me invite you to think back to the 31st December 2010 and if possible to the last few hours before midnight. What memories spring to mind? I am thinking hard but I can't even remember what I was doing on that day to celebrate. What I do remember were some of those resolutions that we make but which keeps getting recycled every year when we don’t fulfil them.

One of my resolutions was to attend Leluu supper club. Thankfully, I managed to keep this one resolution in 2011. Hurrah! It did take till the latter part of the year but at least I got there.
Picture 242

So on a cool evening with a slight chill in the air, I made my way to the location with my regular foodies-in-crime in tow. We were seated at a warm white wooden table with dips and cracks belying its age. I love wooden furniture like this, hardy things that have witnessed many a meal times. Seated already were another couple D&D at the table and together, I think we had the most FUN!

I guess that is enough ramblings and I should go back to the food offered from Leluu supper club. We were all looking forward to what was in store, especially as I brought along a Viet friend who loves his food and cooking.

viet fish cakes with dill and chilli wrap with a bitter viet water lettuce

First course were Dill Fish Cakes with sides of water lettuce and chilli sauce.

Savoury with a slight bouncy texture, the fish cakes were a delightful way of starting the dinner.

fresh summer rolls with pork belly and prawns and garden grown vegetables

Next were Fresh Summer Rolls with Pork Belly and Prawns and garden grown vegetables.

Beef pho

The Beef Pho was next. I love a good rich-depth broth while this was much lighter. The table was divided and the “light vs. rich” broth was intensely debated during the pho course. D from the table mentioned that as we are being served a 7 to 8 course, the intention of our hostess might be to gradually intensify the flavour with each course so as not to destroy our taste buds. This does make sense as we are only into the third course.

With the broth discussion settled to a general consensus, it was onto the beef slices. T raved about the beef slices which were 'lip-smackingly' delicious, hitting the mark with both its taste and texture.


Now we are reaching halfway through and a Chicken, Carrot & Banana Blossom Salad helped to lighten and refresh our taste buds and tummies. I really like this, especially with the banana blossom.

Beef in betel leaves

Time for some protein again with the Lemongrass Beef Sirloin & Peanuts in Betel Leaf. I have grown to love this dish after being introduced to it many years ago and could not resist ordering it at any opportunity when I was in Vietnam last year. The taste of lemongrass really hits you and was quite overpowering. D and I preferred a milder lemongrass taste so that the smokiness from the beef being grilled could shine through more.

Crispy pancake


The Banh Xeo which is a crispy pancake arrived next. Ah, how could you not have Banh Xeo?

My foodie-in-crime K was really looking forward to this. While it may not have passed her ‘Is it as good as back home test’, this was by far the most authentic and appealing execution she had tasted in London. The Banh Xeo was also hotly debated at our table, what else could I be expecting coming with friends who really love and know their Vietnamese cuisine? Not to mention the awesome couple at our table, D&D who joined in with glee!

A chat with Uyen later revealed that she is still experimenting with the Banh Xeo. Banh Xeo is difficult to make just right and having to make dozens to serve to a large group of diners at the same time only adds to the complication.


We were beginning to feel the weight of all that food in our bellies and conversation went to what could be served as a Vietnamese dessert?

The night ended with a banana & coconut bread and butter pudding served. Quite unexpected and while I definitely would have preferred something more authentic, it can be tricky serving authentic dessert as it may not sit well with the palates of those who have never tried it before.

Asian desserts operate in a whole new sphere of taste, texture, colours and designs.

Unpretentious home cooking is how I would describe the food. It does take a lot of effort and care to cook for strangers and Uyen does a great job. A lot of these dishes are made separately for important occasions as I was told.

If you're looking for an introduction to Vietnamese cuisine, you won't go wrong with Leluu supper club. The wide range of Southern Vietnamese dishes that you get here at a suggested donation of £35 is something that you can’t find anywhere else in London.

Supper clubs are a whole different experience to the restaurant scene. You are literally dining in someone's home and every supper club is different. Keep an open mind, don't expect 5 star formal service and mix around meeting new people as you are going to someone's home.

Highlights for me were the genuine home cooking in a warmth atmosphere, the range of dishes I got to eat, meeting D&D who catapulted the experience to new heights (were we the loudest table, I don’t know!) and lingering at the end to hang out with Uyen when she was finally able to lay down her chef/hostess hat at the end of the night. In fact, I didn’t even realise that it was past midnight when she finally had to politely usher us on our way.

It's definitely a great experience and we diners at our table have already planned our next adventure together before the night ended. I DID say that we HAD the most fun!

For details of Leluu supper club, please go here.

Edible Experiences


  1. Sounds like something I need to put on my resolution list. Looks fabulous.

  2. Leluu's supperclub ALWAYS looks awesome. Shame I never got a chance to go visit! :(

  3. Tori and Catty - Supperclubs are usually always fun and exciting. Just finding the time to go is the problem. =)


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