Taiwanese bao buns at Ribot pop-up
For the months of June, July and August, Polygon takes over the terrace of Ribot on the seven dials roundabout.
This was the first event I have been to; the events seem to be gaining momentum on the advertising front and as the weeks go on, I imagine each event will be even more packed out than it was on Friday for the opening night.
Baby Bao offer Taiwanese street food, who you can follow on Twitter @adegeddes to keep up to date with their whereabouts.
This was the menu for the evening – I literally wanted it all (apart from the matcha ice cream) but the boyfriend and I decided to share the tempura fish bao, pork belly bao, fried chicken bao and pork ribs. I also ordered the green beans but sadly, just two hours into service, they had sold out.
The ribs were our least favourite, they were a touch overcooked and the coriander was very strong. They were Korean style bbq and the sauce was lovely and sticky and the meat was evidently good quality. They were not bad but they just weren’t as good as the the buns.
Onto the bao…
Pork belly with sweet peanuts, hoisin, cucumber
The bun was light, fluffy and lightly flavoured – everything you want from a bao. The pork belly actually melted in the mouth. I don’t like peanuts but they didn’t overpower the bun so I can deal. Again, a bit heavy on the coriander but it worked better with these flavours than with the ribs.
Fried chicken, Korean style, with cabbage slaw, sriracha, pineapple ketchup
This was delicious. The peppery fried chicken was cooked perfectly and good quality meat, the cabbage slaw was dressed with sriracha giving the bun a good kick of spice. I can’t say that I tasted the pineapple in th ketchup, I actually forgot that it was pineapple until I came back to write this. It didn’t matter because the rest of it was so yummy it wasn’t lacking another element.
This was the one. The fish was plaice and it was cooked to order, the batter was so light it was barely there and the fish was cooked impeccably. Cabbage slaw and sriracha the same as the other dishes, lovely and spicy.
If you’ve not been up, this pop-up is a small patch of terrace on Buckingham Place with a temporary kitchen at one end and the Polygon bar at the other.
The queue was out the entrance when we arrived at 7pm-ish, but we managed to bag a table – sit down, have a drink then jump in the queue when you’re ready. I queued for approximately 20 minutes for the food; it was worth the wait.
The three guys behind the counter were rushed off their feet and service was interrupted by trips to the local shop to re-stock, I don’t think they were quite prepared for how busy it was going to be. I commented afterwards that I didn’t mind queuing because you could see the effort going into each dish – it wasn’t just slapped together, care was taken with each one to cook it to order and then present it as it should be. You don’t mind a bit of a wait when you can see the passion going into it.
I can find very little info on Baby Bao so I can’t tell you much more about them. (They don’t even appear to have Instagram, quelle horreure)
But I will say this: they’re one to watch. I’m definitely keeping my eyes and ears peeled on where they’re going to be popping up.
And I’m keeping a close eye on the line up from Polygon to see what other delights they’re going to be having up at Ribot over the coming months.
💛 the wee food blogger