Thursday, February 9, 2023

Same Same But Different

I went back to Aulis for a second time in a month, this time on an invited dinner tasting session and hosted by Chef Charlie Tayler from Aulis London who’s visiting while the Soho restaurant is undergoing renovation. I enjoyed the dinner here in early January and I was promised some of the dishes would be different this time, so didn’t mind a return visit this quick. 

And yes, I enjoyed the meal as much as I did last time, and also yes, some of the dishes have already changed. About half of those, to be exact. And I swapped a little by going for the wine pairing option rather than the non-alcoholic drink pairing that I went for last time. 

We began with the beautiful beetroot leaf and truffle pudding with grated berkswell cheese, like I did the last time. Love the rich and firm “pudding” in banana cake consistency. The pig and eel doughnut was one of my favorite courses last time so I didn’t mind a repeat at all, with the whole bite-sized piece loaded with all sort of lovely flavor chucked in my mouth in no time. 

The venison tartare was served in a small marble bowl with hint of crunchy pickles and the acidic caper jam on top. The scallop with smoked pike perch was again outstanding, with the piece of Hokkaido scallop sliced and poached and served with a rich buttermilk sauce mixed with smoked pike perch roes – creamy and briny but in a good way. The crab with fermented potato was slightly different than the one I had, with the potatoes served in slices and slightly burnt for the smoky hint and with more distinct flavor of horseradish infused in the sauce. That’s followed by the bowl of warm egg custard topped with mussel foam and roasted shrimps. 

The turbot fillet was lovely, served with whipped mousse made with the fish trimmings and the bright cougette puree on the side, and the sauce was prepared with the fish bones and roes. The second main course was wagyu beef, with caramelized onions slow-cooked in whey for the rich flavor, then the Parker House rolls made using some of the fat from that piece of wagyu. 

Cheese and desserts were the same as last time. The stout ice-cream with coffee molasses and burnt milk is still my favorite but I felt like all three courses were good in their own way. Some interesting selection re the wine pairing. Like the South African chenin-blanc blend for the seafood dishes, and the cab franc from Bourgueil for the beef. At the end for the cheese and dessert, the sweet Ratafia from Champagne was an unique choice made with 100% pinot noir and aged in barrels. Got a concentrated aroma with hint of cherry and almond. 

A good encore this time.

More photos here: 

When? January 31 2023
Where? Aulis, Shop UG08, Sino Plaza, 255 Gloucester Road, Causeway Bay, Hong Kong
Menu Highlights? Pig and eel doughnut topped with caviar
2021 Etienne Mangier 'Contrefort' Tempranillo, Macedon Ranges, Australia
2018 Albamar Albarino, Rias Baixas, Spain
2019 Alheit Vineyards "Cartology", Western Cape, South Africa
2020 Sexton Vineyard "Giant Steps" Chardonnay, Adelaide Hills, Australia
2005 Domaine de la Chevalerie "Chevalerie", Bourgueil, France 
Vilmart & Cie Ratafia NV, Champagne, France

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