Sunday, June 9, 2013

Night Out at Socialito

It's probably my prejudice (or more from past experience), but I always have this impression that places that are more for drinking don't serve decent food. So I didn't come with particularly high expectation before I set foot at Socialito - just another gimmicky place in LKF for people foolish enough to dine at a "to see and be seen" hip place, I thought.

Cuba Mojo Ceviche - Hamachi, Garlic Chimichurri, Spiced Plantains, Frisees
But I started to like the place the moment I walked into the restaurant through the door next to the bar area (taqueria - I think that's what they called it). Decor is classy and cozy - reminded me of some exclusive clubs that I would come across in LA or something. And this is not the only thing I love - I can easily name a few dishes that I can call my favorite from the dinner I went at the tasting event organized by the restaurant and its owner Buzz Concepts on a Monday evening in June. The Cuban Mojo Ceviche - which we had as appetizer and part of their new summer menu - was light, refreshing, yet rich in flavor, thanks to the garlic chimichurri, spiced plantains and frisee sitting on top of the mildly marinated, firm textured, freshly tasted hamachi ceviche.

USDA Prime Bone-in Ribeye with Kumquat Mojo
The steak - a USDA Prime Bone-in Ribeye - was roasted to the perfect doneness and served with a refreshing kumquat mojo sauce. I love this unique, exotic combination of a sweet citrus flavor to the tasty meat. The side dish of bravas potatoes were cut into small pieces, mixed with chili tomato aioli and cilantro and deep-fried. It's extra crispy with good layers of different tastes infused to it. We just keep on having more of those. I also like the fig crepes dessert, especially the cajeta icecream that came with it. It's so soft and creamy and sweet.

Fig Crepas - Fresh Figs, Caramel Sauce, Almond Crumble, Cajeta Ice Cream
Every Monday evening they have a Latin American Wine Night, featuring wines from the region - mainly Chile and Argentina. If you are into wines of the region I am sure you would enjoy it - for me, I am a bigger fan of their red than the white - in general I found their white wines too much of a mineral taste. And their cocktails were gorgeous. My only worry was I may have drunk too much for my work conference call after the dinner!

Baby Corn Esquites - Grilled Baby Corn, Aioli, Queso Anejo, Lime, Cilantro
Okay, Socialito proved me wrong - after all, it is possible to have a place that's hip enough to hang out, have a few drinks and chill, yet with great food to satisfy the hungry souls in Hong Kong and something of an unique experience with an exotic style of cooking. So, a good place to start and to end your night out at LKF perhaps?

When? June 3 2013
Where? Socialito, G/F, The Centrium, 60 Whyndham Street, Central
Menu Highlights? Cuban Mojo Ceviche - Hamachi, Garlic Chimichurri, Spiced Plantains, Frisee

Note: Dinner by invitation of the restaurant and courtesy of Buzz Concepts

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