February 21, 2023


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I ping NC Chung today wanting to pick his brain on something, and in a flash I got myself a lunch date. It ain't easy finding a place so last-minute, so he chose SOMM. As I have never dined there, I was more than happy to check it out.

So there I was, stepping up to the station on the 7th floor of the Landmark Mandarin Oriental, like I have time and again. I was finally going to head straight in, without turning left or right. I was waiting for the usual greeting, asking me which restaurant I was heading to... except no one greeted me. The staff behind the station turned their attention to the lady on my left, who was ahead of me, and the gentleman on my right - who actually came up behind me. In that instant I realized that I had just been blanked.

Fortunately NC Chung was already seated by the semicircular bar, so I just walked over and sat down next to him.

I had wanted to keep things casual today, as I'm headed home to Taipei for a round of feasting. This was not exactly the place to do "casual", but I made do by ordering very little food.

Aka uni "French toast" - when you're in Richard Ekkebus' house, ordering up something with Japanese pink sea urchin seemed the thing to do. I didn't need to "elevate" this with caviar, though...

Wild duck and foie gras pâté en croute with kumquat and pineapple relish - interesting that they added the accents to "pate" but not "croute"... Anyway, this was OK la... The relish on the side was nice and fragrant thanks to the kumquat (金桔).

I decided to take advantage of the nice bread here to keep my meal "light".

Canelés - I was surprised to see these at the end of our meal. Not many restaurants do canelés in this size, at least not in Hong Kong. I was really happy about this.

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