Food & Drink

13th December 2019

Where East Meets (North) West: An Interview with ‘Dash’- Liverpool’s Latest Pan-Asian Hotspot

Launched this time last year, Dash is Liverpool’s glamourous answer to all things Pan-Asian; from vibrant sushi rolls, to sizzling fillet steak and insta-worthy cocktails.

In the light of their one-year anniversary in the city, we chatted to Lili Chin, Business Development Manager for Dash, to discuss their success and exciting plans for the year ahead.

Firstly, how would you describe Dash to people who might not have visited before?

Dash is a Pan-Asian restaurant with a New York attitude. Dash itself was borne from the travels of our four founders, inspired by their trips over the Atlantic.

We’ve worked really hard on developing the brand. We invested a lot of energy in ensuring the restaurant looks as beautiful as it can be, making the most of the traditional architecture found in this area of Liverpool- transforming this space into a place people want to come and spend time, meet friends and socialise.

It was so essential for us to ensure the food and drink came up to these standards and we work every day to ensure our service is perfect so that people have the best experience possible whilst dining with us. 

What made you decide to set up in Liverpool? 

It was the four local lads from Liverpool that had the vision, and we also have Mansion as our sister venue, a nightclub across the road, so this was an area that we were keen to stay in and develop as a growing hub for good food and fab nightlife. This is such a beautiful Victorian building, it seemed like the perfect place to set up, and we just wanted to go for it. 

For us, there’s nowhere in the city at the moment who offers this kind of dining experience in terms of the theatricality and the style of menu and we’re really keen to take it further to bring the Dash experience to as wider group of people as possible.  

What’s changed since you first launched last year? 

We opened in December 2018, with the aim to provide the perfect night out all in one building because we have both upstairs and downstairs, which is our exclusive club, XOXO. Underneath this again, we have the lower level, which is being developed at the moment, so we’ll have all three levels of the building available for people to dine, drink and dance– essentially so that our guests can spend the whole night with us. We launched straight into the Christmas rush last year which was a bit crazy, but we loved being at the heart of the festivities, especially given how beautiful our building is- particularly at Christmas. We even had a giant red bow wrapping the building in true festive style! 

Essentially, we wanted to take guests on a culinary journey, through the senses- visually and through the taste buds in a true theatrical experience. This is at the heart of the Dash experience, and something that we want to continue for each guest. The brand itself has established so much more in who we are and we’re really excited with what the new year holds for us and what we can offer our guests. 

What can guests expect when they visit Dash?

Big flavours and bold ideas. Classic-French trained Lee Evans is now executive head chef, who previously worked with the Neighbourhood group, now in charge of operations creating all of our menus and he’s taking us to the next level with the food we have on offer. He also works alongside Tom, our bar executive, who have both curated a perfect balance between food and drink: our menus complement eachother so well.

One of our most popular dishes is our signature steak, which catches everyone’s attention when it comes sizzling out the kitchen. We also find the seared king scallops are a hit with the seafood fans, served in the shell on a bed of seaweed complete with smoking dry ice for an extra bit of theatre. The lamb skewers are also really popular and super tasty, so they always go down well. 

Image Credit: Lewis and Helen Calder @ gingerhead – Short Ribs at Dash

The restaurant itself is ridiculously Insta-worthy. What inspired the décor of the restaurant? 

We’ve created a light, romantic setting which is perfect for so many occasions, whether its dinner with friends, date nights or a weekend celebration. In the early evenings, the restaurant comes alive with fairy lights draping over each of the sweeping Georgian windows, giving a soft glow inside the restaurants which our guests love. We also have a private dining room, perfect for birthdays, celebrations and meetings which is decorated in a Parisian style, complete with chandeliers from Paris. Our owners worked together with an interior design company called Style Matters who saw our vision for a setting in the city that people would love and come to recognise as Dash’s signature style. 

We’re an independent restaurant started up by four local lads from Liverpool, who’ve had a vision of this and made it their own. It’s so beneficial for us being independent, yet people tend to assume were a big brand because of our branding which is amazing to know that we can stand up and hold our own against the big competitors in town, which I think people like. This is the only Dash that exists at the moment, and I think people are really proud that it started up here and are keen to support a local business. 

One of your key strengths lies in being an independent business; do you have any plans to expand in the future?

Yes, definitely. Our owners were looking at a Manchester location, but weren’t sure about how close it would be to Dash here in Liverpool.

At the moment, we’re looking at various different places around the UK, but we don’t want to rush into anything as we’re still only in our second year in town and we want to make sure everything is right before we expand. We want to complete all our finishing touches to the event space downstairs first as a priority. It’s a really exciting time for the brand.

Image Credit: Lewis and Helen Calder @ gingerhead18oz Prime cut Chateaubriand – served with truffled bone marrow and red wine jus

How has social media played a part in the business?

Lewis is a fantastic photographer, and he brings our food to life. His photos are used throughout our website and social media which showcase what we’re about and the kind of thing our guests can expect from us.

Social media is such a big part of our business, building our image and reputation as a hub of delicious food and nightlife. Our online presence has been such a big part in capturing what Dash is about and we hope to carry on working as hard as we can to give everyone the best experience possible into the new year. 

For some serious food envy, check out their Instagram at: https://www.instagram.com/dashrestaurants/

For all booking enquiries visit their website at: https://www.dashrestaurants.co.uk or call: 0151 236 2265

Check out some more LGSM Food & Drink articles here

Feature Image Credit: Helen Calder @ gingerhead