If the warm weather has you dreaming of a summer tour around the sun-dappled vineyards and ocean-hugging coastal roads of the Mediterranean, you’re in luck: short of hopping on a plane, you can still savour the gastronomic gems of the region as Hong Kong’s finest restaurants transport diners to France and Italy with seasonal summer menus. From a new chef at one of Hong Kong’s oldest Gallic institutions to fresh Sardinian-style seafood — these new menus offer an authentically Euro-centric taste of summer’s bounty.
Ringing in a new era at Gaddi’s
Executive Chef Xavier Boyer has handed over the reigns at fine dining institution Gaddi’s to chef Albin Gobil, marking an exciting new era for the landmark restaurant at The Peninsula Hong Kong. A rising star of the culinary world who cut his teeth at L’Atelier de Joel Robuchon, Gobil is set to breathe new life into the Peninsula’s flagship fine diner, injecting a bit of theatre and creativity while maintaining the core DNA and ethos of the kitchen: namely, classic and timeless French cuisine executed with the utmost care.
Gobil’s debut menu at Gaddi’s brims with an infectious energy — a result of both the fresh youthful presence in the kitchen and a new willingness for experimentation. Diners will find dishes that adhere to classical French traditions, from pan-seared duck foie gras (main image above) to a buttery Dover sole meunière; while other dishes veer off the map with delightful results, from beef and oyster tartare peppered with shisho to grilled Hokkaido scallops splashed with Noilly Prat. Together with sommelier Bojan Radulovic, the two have dreamed up a new “Le Weekend du Vin à Gaddi’s” experience which whisks oenophiles off to the vineyards of France, diving deep into the 620-label cellar paired with exceptional cuisine. Priced at HK$1,088 with wine pairing, the weekend menu is available during lunch Sat–Sun.
A trip down the Côte d’Azur
It’s easy to imagine you’re basking in the warm sun and gazing out at the azure waters of the French Riviera at La Petite Maison, the Gallic import that brought a slew of Mediterranean, Southern French and Niçoise dishes to Hong Kong late last year. The start of the summer in Provence coincides with a list of new dishes at the stylish H Queen’s restaurant, as well as cocktails and wines (including the city’s most extensive collection of rosés) to complete the charming feel of the Côte d’Azur.
Mediterranean-style produce shines in a new seasonal menu crafted around fresh seafood, meat and pasta, with dishes served ‘à la minute’ and made for sharing. Kick off with the warm prawns with olive oil, generously portioned and infused with the flavours of lemon and basil; then move on to the crisp Niçoise Salad, the classic plate of greens gussied up with triple A-grade tuna, olives, fresh anchovies and a soft-boiled egg. For sharing, the French bean salad with foie gras is a substantial main, while the vegetarian ratatouille sees a medley of Mediterranean vegetables perfumed with olive oil and contrasted with tangy Greek feta. Go with a group and round out your French Riviera feast with the linguini pasta with Venetian clams, whole sea bream baked in papillote (pictured above) and rack of lamb with spiced couscous.
La Petite Maison, Shop 1, 1/F, H Queen’s, 23-29 Stanley Street, Central, Hong Kong, +852 2887 1113
Trattoria Del Pescatore’s 1st Anniversary
Before Trattoria Del Pescatore opened in land-locked Milan in 1976, there were very few places to eat seafood in town. But once it did, founder Giuliano Ardu and his family made a name for themselves by serving comforting seafood dishes and traditional Sardinian recipes from their hometown. The family-owned restaurant has remarkably chosen Hong Kong for their first outpost abroad. Tucked away on Sheung Wan’s tranquil Po Yan Street, the trattoria celebrates its first anniversary this month with a special degustation menu, created by head chef Andrea Bortolotti, newly joined from Milan.
The five courses run from Venetian salted cod on chickpea cream to a stunning seared Hokkaido scallop on truffle mash, Sardinian-style stuffed whole squid, and your choice of rustic homemade pasta. As tradition goes, right after the main course, a plate of fresh Pecorino is slipped in front of you, perfectly pairing with a sipping glass of sweet Mirto, a berry-flavoured Sardinian digestif. We wouldn’t say no to dessert, either, with choices of a luxurious chocolate tartlet or baked apple flan with caramel gelato and more. The special menu is priced at HK$1,400 for two persons, plus an additional HK$100 supplement per dessert.
Trattoria del Pescatore, 11 Po Yan Street, Sheung Wan, Hong Kong, +852 2559 3339