Monday, April 5, 2021

More Wines Than Food

While we were still waiting for our turn to check out Batard in Sai Ying Pun, with their waiting list now extended to 3 months plus, we went to visit the wine bar by the same group on the other side of the harbor at K11 Musea a few Fridays ago.

The bar/lounge is located at an obscure corner near the top floor of the shopping mall, and though we thought it was new, we were told that they actually soft-opened a few months ago in the midst of the fourth wave of pandemic. The space was definitely incomparable to their 7000 square feet shop in Sai Ying Pun completed with a retail area, cellar and a proper restaurant, but it’s still comfortable with a long bar, a few tables and a terrace for outdoor dining, drinking, and smoking. 

I am pretty sure they have a much smaller range of wines available at their K11 store, but we are still talking about a 10-page long wine menu listed on their iPad app. We started with a bottle of Krug (partly because our friend J was "complaining" that she hasn't had a Krug for a long time - I don't blame her for having that sentiment). The multi-vintage 168th Edition Grande Cuvee Brut was creamy with lots of ripe lemon, apple pie and brioche on the palate. Can’t go wrong with that especially on a Friday when we just wanted to wind down. Meanwhile we reached out for the food menu, wanting something to go with our fine glasses of bubbly. In comparison, their food selection was simple, probably a little bit too simple to my liking. Constrained by the size of the shop and the lack of proper kitchen facility, all they got was cold-cuts, cheese and a few hot dishes pre-made and can be re-heated by air-fryer, I suspect, or simple equipment. 

Nonetheless, their charcuterie platter came in generous portion and variety, with black truffle ham and 3 kinds of cheese – Brie, Tete de Moine and Mimolette. Other than the fact that I wish they served the Tete de Moine in pencil shaving size rather than as a whole chunk which was too hard and mild, everything was just great for our wine. It’s probably one of the more expensive plate of fries we have ordered, but it came in two flavors (the normal ones and the sweet potato ones) and two different sauces (Harissa and Truffle Mayonnaise), and the sauces were actually very tasty especially the Harissa with a good kick. 

We went for a bottle of Burgundy next. I thought the 15-year-old bottle was approaching its prime and slowly develop over the course of the evening. Light ruby color, round, medium-bodied, bouquet of violet and red fruits on the nose, with more red fruits (strawberries and plums) on the palate. Later the secondary taste of earth, sweet tobacco and cedar wood came to life midway through the bottle (30 minutes or so after opening) I was secretly glad that we didn’t eat much so we could concentrate on sip such beautiful drink on the table. 

That said, we did order more food. We were warned that the Wagyu Beef Tartare portion was tiny – but we still didn’t expect it to be THAT tiny like those canapes that went around at a cocktail reception. They were better off serve it on a small plate rather than in a tumbler to spread out the ingredients (beef, toasts and sliced mini radishes) to make it look bigger. Nonetheless it was pretty tasty from the couple bites I tried. The pork croquette was much more generous, with 3 pieces per serving portion, and I like the Fuyu (fermented tofu) aioli that served alongside. Not as pungent as I feared so it wouldn’t overwhelm any of the wine we were having.  

Probably not the place I would go with an empty stomach, but we sure will come back when we were looking for some serious liquid diet. Or come to think of that, maybe next time we buy the wine for takeaway and drink it upstairs with roast goose? Just an idea. 

When? March 19 2021
Where? The Fine Wine Experience, Shop 606, K11 Musea, 18 Salisbury Road, Tsimshatsui, Kowloon
Food Highlights? The charcuterie platter
Champagne Krug Grande Cuvee Brut 168eme Edition MV
2006 Domaine Daniel Moine-Hudelot Bonnes Mares Grand Cru

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