Last Saturday we said goodbye to Butterfield’s, the private social club at Taikoo Place own by its landlord Swire, which we have been going since we moved into the neighborhood. Over the years we came here often enough that it’s almost like the "cafeteria" for us, whether for meeting up with friends over something more proper or just for a casual home-style bites, so we were a bit sad when we got the news that it's closing down to make way for a different, soon-to-be-revealed concept as part of Swire's remodel plan of this office complex.
It's interesting that even though the place has been around since forever, many people – including those working in the area – didn't know its existence. But for those who are familiar with the place, Butterfield's was known for its colonial-style classic decor and a vast art collection spread around the clubhouse, connected by a grand horseshoe staircase which reminded me of that famous scene from the movie Titanic.
Tables for their last weekend of service were booked out well in advance, but we were lucky to get our confirmed reservation for dinner at Soong Room, their Chinese restaurant on the lower level. Compared to a regular restaurant, their menu is relatively simple, geared towards mainstream, classic Chinese dishes one would see more often in a hotel, but there were occasional seasonal dishes that the chef offered, which was more creative and contemporary.
We figure it's our farewell meal to this place so we ordered a few of our favorite dishes, including the lettuce with dried shrimps served in a sizzling casserole, the soy sauce chicken, and the noodles with fish broth and thousand-year-eggs. The fresh yellow pomfret was the special dish of the evening, and the fish size was just perfect for the two of us. We ordered it steamed with black bean sauce and tofu, and it was nicely done with rich flavor and cooked just right.
I wouldn't go as far as saying their dishes were the best in town, but the service was what made a huge difference and made us return often. We always felt like right at home whenever we were here, well served by the fine team of staff, most of whom have been around since forever. That's probably something we would miss most about this place.
When? October 8 2016
Where? Butterfield's, Level 2, Dorset House, Taikoo Place, Quarry Bay, Hong Kong