December 3, 2007

Another Wonderful Dinner at Caprice

Pin It

Last night my friend Julian hosted his "birthday MNSC" dinner at Caprice. It was, needless to say, a wonderful experience at one of the top restaurants in Hong Kong. In fact, this dinner almost made me change the #10 position of my top 10 restaurants!

We started with the amuse bouche, some sort of beef terrine topped with a light mash.
Then moved onto the lobster carpaccio florid with Aquitaine caviar, yuzu mousse and nori seaweed. This was certainly delicious as the lobster was very fresh, and the combination of the caviar, yuzu and nori teased our tastebuds. However this was a course that was designed to screw up our palate for wine...

Next we had the black truffle ravioli with Jerusalem artichoke salad in merlot vinegar. We had a discussion about the curious fact that many French restaurants insist on serving ravioli, which isn't actually French in origin. In any case, the ravioli was delicious and the black truffle stuffing was yummy.

The third course was line-caught sea bass with oxtail ravioles in braised jus, bamboo leeks and tropical coconut infusion. Ravioli again! This time it was actually a bit crunchy and interesting. The sea bass had perfectly crunchy skin and the flesh was just the right balance between being too dry or too juicy.

Our main course was Challans duck fillet with buttered Savoy cabbage and Parmentier in braised sauce. This was one of the best duck courses I have had in Hong Kong. The flesh was tender, a good balance with the fatty skin of the duck. The skin was seasoned with finely ground black pepper and Chinese five spice, not dissimilar to the recipe I have for duck breast at home actually...wonderful! I couldn't finish the buttered cabbage fast enough! It was sooo good.

The ladies did not wish to have duck so they ordered up a roasted Bresse chicken. It looked very, very good and should rival San San Trois. Being very full by this point, I only took 2 tiny slivers of breast meat when offered and did not taste the skin. 

Interestingly, the ladies felt unsatiated and ordered up a couple of orders of Hainan chicken rice from the cafe. We joked about doing a chicken pairing between the Bresse and the Hainan chickens...Needless to say I did not partake in this.

We were served a sample of 5 types of cheese. The aged Comté was particularly salty today so it was difficult to finish even one small piece, since I didn't want to consume any more bread.

Now onto the first of the desserts - Valencia floating island with chestnut Mont-Blanc and blood orange granite. Interesting time of year to serve granité...since it's normally done in the summer. However the chestnut was delicious, and the blood orange granité was a welcome refreshment.

I did not seem to have difficulty lapping up the other dessert - chocolate liegeois with iced tonka bean and hazelnut in warm coca coulis. This was chocolate all the way with a dab of gold foil on top.

Now onto the wines...this turned out to be a very high-scoring evening for the MNSC as a couple of people identified one of the wines relatively easily. The wines were served in 3 flights, with a bottle of Chateau Rayas and Chateau Mouton Rothschild from the same vintage in each flight.

1983 Mouton Rothschild - classic left bank Bordeaux from the get go. I actually guessed it was Lynch Bages, another Pauillac. 95 points.

1983 Rayas - I detected the perfumed nose, and given my very limited experience with Rayas, decided it was a muted bottle of Guigal La Mouline. 96 points.

1989 Rayas - I was the only one who did not like the "funky" nose of this wine, and gave it a relatively low score. But I did think it was a Rayas. 92 points.

1989 La Conseillante - again a classic Bordeaux from a seemingly ripe vintage, and definitely my wine of the evening. I was led astray by someone else's guess earlier and thought this could be a Margaux, even though the host gave me a very big hint by initially refusing to accept my guess. 98 points.

1996 Mouton Rothschild - I initially guessed it was Margaux (to be consistent with the last flight) but finally changed to Pichon Lalande due to the smoky tobacco in the nose (should have been a tell tale sign that it was Mouton!) But at least I thought it was a Pauillac, which was better than most people...95 points.

1996 Rayas - the nose was incredibly perfumed, which strengthened my conviction that this was the Guigal La Mouline. Oops...I think I should drink more Rayas. 97 points. 

We also had the 1983 Salon pre-dinner, and even though many others had pooh-poohed it as being "acidic, mushroom piss", I actually thought that was just classic old Champagne, though it was a bit on the acidic side for my taste.

No comments:


Related Posts with Thumbnails

TripAdvisor Travel Map