Yi Jing review: Mumbai’s newest Chinese restaurant will make you rethink spices, staples and more


Spice can be sneaky, sophisticated and sensational. I don’t just make this statement to create a tantalizing alliteration. My recent dining experience at Yi Jing, Mumbai was a delicious three-hour demonstration of the same. Yi Jing is ITC’s flagship Chinese restaurant which was first incubated at ITC Kohenur in HITEC City, Hyderabad. ITC Maratha, Mumbai marks its fourth outpost (after Delhi and Ahmedabad) in the country. In my opinion, the city is more than ready for it. In a region full of pan-Asian opportunities, a specialized approach on this scale is sure to attract interest. The audience here is informed, open to experience and hungry for “authentic” taste experiences. Can Yi Jing not only impress them, but lure them back? We will find out ourselves.

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Photo credit: Yi Jing, ITC Maratha, Mumbai

Our reservation is for dinner and we walk in to find a room with beautiful red, black and beige accents. The striking contrast and floral motifs remind us of scarlet Cheongsam dresses. In addition to regular tables, the restaurant has seating at the bar as well as live counters where guests can immerse themselves in the magic of wok, noodle making, dim sum shaping and much more. Chinese cuisine has natural theatrical elements and the restaurant invites you to make the most of it.

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Photo credit: Yi Jing, ITC Maratha, Mumbai

At the helm of Yi Jing is Liang Xiao Qing, who is nothing short of a legend when it comes to this particular cuisine. Armed with more than four decades of experience, Chef Liang has received several prestigious awards and has impressed dignitaries around the world with his culinary prowess. He has also served as a host and judge in various cooking shows and competitions. With Yi Jing, he shows Mumbai what it has been missing when it comes to something as popular as Chinese food. Throughout our conversation, his emphasis on quality ingredients and finesse of technique stands out. The dishes here are mainly centered around Sichuan and Hunan – and Chef Liang is determined to transport you there.

Let’s dive into our recommendations. If you like to start your meal with a comforting soup, you can’t go wrong with it Vegetable coriander soup. Give us this simple, heart-warming broth every monsoon and winter evening, and we won’t refuse. That Sichuan Style Chicken and Mushroom Soup proved to be a markedly potent counterpart. While we enjoyed it, prepare for heat after ordering it.

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Photo credit: Yi Jing, ITC Maratha, Mumbai

The initial part of the menu will leave dim sum lovers spoiled for choice. We don’t mean just in terms of filling. Dim sums at Yi Jing are miniature masterpieces in terms of taste and aesthetics. In their own way, they redefine what we expect these crowd-favorite appetizers to be. Take for example Chicken Char Sui Dumplings in the form of elegant swans. We’re in the habit of photographing well-plated food from different angles, and let us tell you, this one kept us busy for a few minutes. Note the attention to detail: the crispy exterior shaped like wavy feathers, the white sesame on both ends, the eyes and the beak. After admiring their beauty, we had to steel ourselves before disturbing and then devouring their form. But in doing so, we polished off each satisfyingly crunchy bite.

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Photo credit: Yi Jing, ITC Maratha, Mumbai

Among the vegetarian options, don’t miss out Sake and Edamame Dumplings, shaped like Edamame pods. These melt-in-your-mouth bites have a touch of truffle that provides a sure balance of flavor. We’ve tried several edamame dishes with truffle before, but this one carried a certain sophistication. The heart-shaped one Spicy carrot and wasabi buns was also an instant favourite. The texture was the master here – we loved how the heat from the wasabi seemed almost hidden between strands of the grated carrot. Another texture treat was BBQ Pork Buns: cloud-like soft buns encasing a sweet and spicy meat filling. While this particular order was quite difficult to navigate with cutlery, taste prevailed over everything else.

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Photo credit: Yi Jing, ITC Maratha, Mumbai

We’re not done with the appetizers. In addition to dimsums and dumplings, Yi Jing boasts several other options for indulgence before you reach the main course. For an exquisite crunch, join Fried water chestnuts Wok tossed with crispy chili. If you want to play it safe, you can choose comfort from classic Cantonese style lotus stem. These aren’t tiny chip-sized bites, but almost thin and crispy slices that would span an average palm. The restaurant sources them from Thailand and tosses them in their version of a sweet chili sauce. Seafood aficionados, don’t hesitate to order King prawns in two flavours. Size is king here, but so is the texture of the perfectly cooked fish and the robustness of flavor.

Yi Jing prides itself on its duck offerings and features in almost every category on the menu. We liked it Crispy Cantonese duck cigar roll served with plum sauce. But in retrospect we felt the other starters left more of an impression. Nevertheless, the most memorable part of our meal was digging in Beijing Duck from the Chinese grill department. This dish is an experience in itself and Chef Liang guided us through the different stages. The other is served with several sides: One trio consists of hoisin sauce, garlic paste and fine sugar. The second consists of rice pancakes, spring onions and cucumber. As directed, we first dipped the crispy skin in the sugar. Our palette was then ready for the next experience: the combination of the other pieces with the sides in the form of a wrap. This medley was a hit: we loved the freshness of the greens, the tenderness of the meat and the salty-sweetness of the hoisins.

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Photo credit: Yi Jing, ITC Maratha, Mumbai

Before we move on to the main course, a brief about the cocktails at Yi Jing. The refreshing concoctions from the bar menu are inspired by the four seasons in China: spring, summer, winter and autumn. We highly recommend Shanghai Rose (a gin-based cocktail with lavender, rose syrup, elderflower and a touch of cranberry juice). If you’re a fan of the pineapple and passion fruit duo, go for it Ocha Sour, made using Roku gin. You can also ask the mixologist to tailor a drink especially for you with a base of any spirit of your choice. By choosing vodka we were treated Sea breezealso with blue curacao, grapefruit juice, cranberry juice and soda.

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Photo credit: Yi Jing, ITC Maratha, Mumbai

After the delights of Beijing Duck, our expectations reached a notch higher. That Chengdu-style sliced ​​lamb with house special cool powder was one of the treats we had been waiting to try all evening. We had learned that it is one of the menu’s key dishes that features Chef Liang’s favorite Sichuan pepper. He picks them up by hand during his frequent trips to China. The fiery sauce was served with sticky jasmine rice. In most other restaurants, a popular pairing would be fried rice or hakka noodles. But what we appreciated about choosing jasmine rice was that it allowed the characteristic aroma of the peppers to stand out. The dish as a whole was thus a symphony, not a cacophony, of spice and heat. The lamb, sourced from New Zealand, was succulent and juicy.

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Photo credit: Yi Jing, ITC Maratha, Mumbai

If you are looking for a chicken option, go with it Fried fried chicken with preserved chili Sauce. This is also a spicy sauce that packs a flavorful punch. We recommend enjoying it with another Yi Jing specialty: hand-pulled la-mian noodles. Don’t forget to grab a seat at the live counter and watch the chefs create this delicacy from scratch – based on culinary techniques dating back 4000 years. The noodles themselves are so wonderfully healthy: they made us rethink the ones we had been eating to date.

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Photo credit: Yi Jing, ITC Maratha, Mumbai

To end our party, we tried first Yuzu Mascarpone Cheesecake, Hibiscus Fragrant Fresh Seasonal Fruit Compote. It didn’t quite hit the mark: the cheesecake wasn’t as creamy as the mascarpone in its name suggests, and the tartness of the sorbet was quite overwhelming. What we liked better was Peanut Marquise, ginger pineapple ice cream and five spice caramel. This is a decadent delight perfect for those who have reserved room for dessert. But if you can’t handle anything too heavy, just order the homemade Ginger-pineapple sorbet separately. This was expertly balanced: you are first hit by the earthy flavor of ginger; Just as you expect the sharpness to kick in, the tart sweetness of the pineapple comes to your rescue. We would return for this.

Yi Jing shone a different light on Chinese staples, as well as the kind of spiciness and aromas we expect from them. We were impressed by the balance between subtlety and robustness in every dish we tasted. Whether you enjoy Chinese food, like to explore Asian flavors or want to enjoy a sumptuous gastronomic feast, Yi Jing promises an incredible experience not to be missed.

Where: Yi Jing, Lobby Level, ITC Maratha, A Luxury Collection Hotel, Mumbai, Sahar, Andheri East
When: Lunch – 12:00pm to 2:45pm; Dinner – 19:00 to 23:30; All days of the week
Price for two (approx): INR.5000 plus taxes


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