Bango Kitchen employs Pan-Asian panache in order to capitalise on Cornwall’s abundant natural larder.
Words by Dan Warden
Located on the fast-evolving Commercial Road in Penryn, Bango Kitchen provides guests with a Pan-Asian style dining experience right next to the river. With its layout and aesthetics designed with the Japanese concept of wabi-sabi in mind, the 300-year-old warehouse-turned-restaurant features a large open kitchen, partly surrounded by a mix of small and large communal tables and seating.
The restaurant is fully licensed, serving a great range of wines, beers, cider and soft drinks from Cornish suppliers. Nick and Howard have also teamed up with Black and Gold Organic Distillery to produce their very own gin – distilled just up the road in Ponsanooth – which includes ingredients that feature regularly on the food menu, like yuzu and coriander. “We firmly believe we have one of the best gins in the Cornish market,” says Howard, “and it’s available to buy from us by the glass or bottle!”
As you might expect, the drinks list is not the only menu here with a nod to locality, and whilst the food has that distinct, Pan-Asian panache, the meat and produce that informs the menu is proudly Cornish. “We champion incredible local producers such as Primrose Herd, Duchy Game, Flying Fish, West Country and Soul Farm,” says Nick, “and we try to use the best possible Cornish produce, alongside authentic imported ingredients to produce our dishes. Our focus is on consistency and attention to detail; our goal is to ensure our dishes look vibrant and beautiful, and that each brings a depth of flavour that lives up to their visuality.
“Our food menu is based on our own take on ramen, bao buns and a nice array of sides, alongside our talented chefs’ ever-evolving daily specials including fresh sushi and sashimi. We use a lot of traditional techniques, including making our Tonkutso Broth, which takes over 72 hours every week! We then give them a bit of extra ‘Bango’ punch and finesse.”
If you’re more in the mood for a takeaway than dining in, the handy Bango Kitchen App allows you to view and book from the full menu. And for anybody organising an event, Nick, Howard and the team are able to prepare their show-stopping Bango Sushi Platters.
As well as Bango Kitchen, you can also experience Nick and Howard’s foodie finesse via The Shellfish Pig. Catering for outside events, from private parties to stable Cornish diary dates that include Rock Oyster Festival and Paul Ainsworth’s Travelling Feast, this mobile venture serves a crowd-pleasing menu inspired by Cornish pork and seafood. And whilst it offers up something different to Bango Kitchen, both have in common a flair for the unusual and a knack for full-on flavour that is really not to be missed for those seeking to sample the best of epicurean Cornwall.
Bango Kitchen opens 11.30am to 3pm on Tuesdays and Wednesdays, and 11.30am to 8pm from Thursday to Saturday. No bookings required – simply walk in and grab a table. For event information, email email@example.com.