Forced to close down a few days after its initial opening in December 2020——the Covid-19 pandemic gracing us with a Christmas we’ll never forget——Café BAO once again opens its doors, the new King’s Cross location serving some of the small chain’s greatest hits, alongside new dishes with innovative twists and a selection of sweet treats from the dedicated BAO Bakery Goods counter.
Adding to ventures that include BAO Soho and BAO Fitzrovia, the King’s Cross restaurant is set over two floors with interiors by Macaulay Sinclair in collaboration with BAO; the space drawing influence from the Western style cafes in Asia with mid-century wood panelling, curved lines, Bauhaus red flooring and Noguchi paper lampshades. Devilishly retro and Instagram-ready, it’s the perfect setting to enjoy Shing Tat Chung, Erchen Chang and Wai Ting Chung’s Yōshoku cuisine.
Open from breakfast Café BAO King’s Cross serves up plates such as the BAO Loaf with syrup and butter, baked ham hock congee pie and bacon, egg, cheese spring onion pancake. Come lunch and dinner, hungry diners can choose from delights that include the hamburger BAO, lobster BAO and Taiwanese fried chicken Kiev; although it’s strongly advised to leave space for dessert, with those new baked goods showcased on the counter immediately upon entering.
Large floor to ceiling windows let in an abundance of natural light, whilst upstairs (reached via a white accented staircase), a workshop space teaches all about BAOs and the process of creating them, and overlooks the hustle and bustle of the café below.
Whether devouring an all-time favourite, sipping on bubble tea or cocktails, enjoying a lingering lunch or popping in to pick up something from the baked goods counter (the salted egg custard ‘Sad Face’ BAO, molten chocolate and cherry ‘Polo’ BAO, or salted caramel BAO cookie all sounding particularly indulgent), Café BAO fuses authenticity with playful contemporary touches, and is a welcome addition to the ever-evolving neighbourhood.