Friday, February 21, 2020

New Year Tradition

We were at Caprice during the Chinese New Year long weekend, same as we did for the last few years as part of our new "family tradition". It’s always good for a change when we had way too many traditional Chinese dishes during the festive period at a place we would like to visit every now and then.

Knowing that they have introduced a few new dishes since our last visit just last month, we left it to their sous chef Suveg to decide what we were going to eat. We started with an elaborate amuse-bouche of a piece of baked Gillardeau oyster, done au gratin with melted mont d’or cheese on top, with mushroom espuma and finely cut black truffle strips. It’s served in a glass surrounded by burnt straw, giving it a bit of smoky aroma. Thought the smoke was a bit too strong but other than that, it’s a brilliant first dish.

Our next course featured pan-seared duck foie gras with mandarin wedges, candied chestnuts and duck-jus reduction sauce. It’s well-executed with nice, soft texture, and sweet and mildly citrus flavor – with mandarin having the same pronunciation as “gold” in Cantonese, I thought it’s well suited for the Chinese New Year season too.

Two more seafood dishes were served before our main. First was pan-seared scallop with potato confit, caviar and champagne cream sauce. The dish was similar to something we had before but last time it’s with a fish not scallop, and this time, the sauce was infused with a light hint of seaweed. Everything was perfectly prepared – particularly the right touch of acidity in the sauce working well with the rich umami flavor. Next one was poached turbot fillet with razor clams and golden turnip, served with a mushroom and lapsang souchong sauce done consommé style, with winter black truffles shaved on top in front of us. I thought the smoky tea flavor worked well with the mushroom consommé for the fish fillet, and the black truffles just made this extra special.

I couldn’t recall having a pork dish at Caprice before, but our main course of porchetta was remarkable. The fatty meat was rolled with lard on the outside then slow-cooked and served in the form of a thinly sliced disc. On top was bits of croutons, bacons and chives, and on the side, swiss chard, crispy ginger shreds and a smear of quince puree. The meat has the consistency of a pulled-pork but even fattier, and that along with the thickened meat jus made this a rich and heavy dish with slightly gamey flavor. I thought this is perfect for a cold winter day.

We passed up cheese and went straight to dessert. It’s a classic combination chocolate, caramel and peanut with a sable cookie sandwiched in between and topped with a quenelle of vanilla icecream – just the right portion to finish our meal with. Went dry this time for a change – because it’s supposed to be Dry January.

More photos here:

When? January 27 2020
Where? Caprice, Level 6, Four Seasons Hong Kong, 8 Finance Street, Hong Kong
Menu Highlights? Porchetta, Swiss Chard, Quince and Pork Ginger Sauce

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