September 18, 2017

Long-awaited catch-up

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It has been quite a few months since Hairy Legs settled into his new role at Caprice, and we've been meaning to catch up for a while.  After months of waiting, Bilbaobab was finally back in town, and we agreed to meet up for lunch today.  I suggested we check out Arcane, as I have fond memories of my dinner there from some time ago and it's a place the others haven't been to before.

By the time I arrived, it was clear from Stefano's demeanor that Hairy Legs had been recognized, as we were offered complimentary Champagne.  Not wanting to go back to the office while red in the face, I politely declined.  I also declined to have Chef Shane Osborn create a special menu of signature dishes for us, as I'm dining out four consecutive nights this week and really didn't need the extra calories.  So set lunch for me it was.

Spinach and Parmesan tortellini with onion consommé and bellota ham - this was very nicely done.  The textures of the wrappers were pleasing, and the flavors of the fillings worked very well with the strong flavors of the consommé and jamón.  In fact, the consommé seemed to have been seasoned with something akin to Chinese five spice (五香)... and delivered a lovely and comforting familiarity.

September 11, 2017

Why I don't go to brand new restaurants

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Last week Chaxiubao pinged me, asking if I wanted to join him for dinner at Terroir Parisien - Yannick Alleno's first foray into Hong Kong.  I knew that the restaurant is brand new, and as most of my friends know, I have a habit of not going to brand new restaurants.  I was hesitant, as the chance of stepping on landmines is high.  I was then told that a few of our other friends are coming along.  I relented and agreed to go along, against my better judgement.

The address indicated that it is on the Mezzanine Floor of the Prince's Building, so I figured they had taken over the space previous occupied by can.teen.  But when I rode up the escalators from the front entrance of the building, I found that there was no access to the space.  The old entrance had been boarded up.  So I went around the floor.  No other entrance.  Nothing remotely that tells you there's a restaurant around.

I wasn't the only one.  I saw others looking lost, and I bet they, too, were looking for the restaurant.  I decided to go up to the Second Floor, as I remembered that the space used to have two entrances - one accessible from the walkway between Prince's Building and Alexandra House.  Sure enough, the restaurant's only entrance is from that side, and is best accessed by coming in from another building.  That's just plain stupid.

September 6, 2017

Les Créations de Krug en 2004

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I was privileged to have been invited to the launch of a few cuvées from the house of Krug.  These bottlings all have their origins in the year 2004, so it makes sense that they were showcased side-by-side in the same tasting.

The function room at the Mandarin Oriental Hong Kong was set up to handle a couple of different sessions, and the first thing I noticed was this spread of nibbles... Bite-size canapés which were both savory and sweet - and pretty to look at, too.

I was feeling surprisingly peckish, so I grabbed a few of these.  In retrospect, I probably should have had 3 plates at least...

September 5, 2017

Krug x Mushroom burger

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Last month when I was invited to an evening showcasing this year's Krug x Mushroom pairing, one of the things I tasted was the mushroom burger at Beef and Liberty.  At the time we were given a list of promotional dishes, pricing, and schedule.  The program for Beef and Liberty wasn't due to start for another month, so I had to patiently wait until I returned from Korea.

The promotion actually started last night, but since I was out for a wine dinner I couldn't reschedule, tonight was the earliest opportunity for me to take advantage of the offer.  And since Uwe is an old friend, I was gonna do what I can to support him.  So Hello Kitty and I booked ourselves a table, and pre-booked the Champagne and burger combo.

We start with some padron peppers first.  These are always fun to eat, since it's kinda like playing Russian roulette but with less severe consequences.  None of these were spicy tonight...

September 4, 2017

Great French wines, not-so-great American steaks

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It's been a couple of months since I last hosted a dinner for the MNSC boys, and now it was Curry Jayer's turn.  After a couple of years at Seventh Son (家全七福), this year the venue was changed to the American Club in Hong Kong.  There would be steak on the menu.

Our host decided to order a few simple dishes, which was just fine by me!  My stomach could use a little break from eating...

Caesar salad - actually pretty good.  Each of us took a chunk of romaine lettuce, and the croûtons were pretty nice.

Grilled Alaskan king crab legs - these were VERY tasty, with melted, seasoned butter dripping from the shells.

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