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New Eats: ‘Ode to Forest’ with Tate Dining Room, Roganic’s sustainability series and more

Here’s our weekly roundup of New Eats that’ll hopefully take you some place a little more inspirational than your usual joint. Go a little further than your neighbourhood block. Venture out to new districts. Cross over to the Kowloon side, even. Make the most of the renewed selection below and a distinct autumn breeze in the air.

‘Ode to Forest’ at Tate Dining Room

Each course of chef Vicky Lau’s ingredient-focused menu is a stunning, artistic showcase. Expert innovation and ideation of a single element of produce come together in beautiful platings that are so photogenically pleasing. In its latest evolution, Tate Dining Room presents ‘Ode to Forest’, a mushroom-focused menu that adapts to the distinct French-Chinese twist the venue is known and loved for.

With the delicate, pastel space now transformed into a lush, verdant forest, this is where this menu begins. It spotlights a selection of mushroom varietals foraged from Europe and Asia, including local King Oyster and Swanson mushroom to the Japanese Shiitake and reputed Matsutake. The beloved Morels also makes an appearance as a sweet dessert with coffee mascarpone cream, banana compote, puff pastry and caramel soy sauce infused with the mushroom. ‘Ode to Ganba Fungus’ is a notable dish, a creamy seaweed risotto stirred in with mussels and Chinese wild ganba fungus, similarly compared to ‘ried beef mushroom for its savoury, chewy bite. As is ‘Ode to Mushroom Farm’, a celebratory course for local grown produce, served with local yellow chicken roulade, Swanson mushroom, salted radish and foie gras. The menu closes with a beautiful Magic Mushroom Mignardises; miniature chocolate presented upon log stumps scattered amongst a mossy bed.

Tate Dining Room’s ‘Ode to Forest’ 6-course menu (HK$1,080) is available at lunch from Fridays to Saturdays only. Reservations can be made via +852 2555 2171 or info@tate.com.hk.

Tate Dining Room, 210 Hollywood Road, Sheung Wan, Central, Hong Kong, +852 2555 2172

Sustainability Series at Roganic this October

For the month of October, Roganic, as the recipient of a Michelin Green star, honours its accolade and continues its efforts to spread more sustainable habits within the hospitality industry. The ‘Roganic & Friends of Sustainability’ gathers chefs and notable figures from F&B for a month-long series of pop-ups and collaborations. You may have seen the Climate Action Luncheon on your Instagram feed this past Sunday, a lunch menu ideated by Roganic along with Whey, Ando and Grassroots, using only produce that’s been sourced with 150 kilometres of Hong Kong.

Fast-forward to 21 October for a ‘Waste Not Want Not’ zero waste cocktail dinner hosted with Rosewood Hong Kong’s Darkside, where a tasting menu has been specially designed to complement three newly launched ecoCOCKTAILS shaken up with ecoSPIRITS, a closed-loop technology that reduces the carbon impact of premium spirits by 80 percent. The Eco Negroni, made with leftover orange peels and Lemon Dry Buddha Hand liqueur; Eco Aloes Margarita, with low-waste Arquitecto 100% blue agave spirit and home made aloes liqueur made with aloe grown by local farmers; and Eco Berries Cooler, a kombucha-based mocktail designed to reuse all red berries left from Rosewood’s kitchens.

Wrapping up the thoughtful initiative is the ‘Celebration of Local Heroes’ dinner (HK$1,380) on 28 October. The menu will spotlight some notable local suppliers –– New Age Organic Farm, Zen Organic Farm along with some of Roganic’s favourite ingredients –– seafood from Peter’s Seafood, organic rice crop from Yi O Rice Farm and a selection of micro greens and edible flowers from Common Farms.

Roganic, UG/F, Shop 08, Sino Plaza, 255 Gloucester Road, Causeway Bay, Hong Kong, +852 2817 8383

Breakfast at Boy n Burger

If you’ve been relying on a cup of pre-brewed batch of coffee from the corner-shop every morning, it’s time to do better. Eat better! Boy n Burger has luckily just added a new breakfast menu to their range of quality-first burgers. Served until 11am daily, there are crowd-favourite classics like the hash-brown and egg muffin or sausage and egg muffin, both made with locally sourced eggs and sandwiched between a butter-toasted muffin, and other deliciously fragrant serves bound to make any morning a very good one –– toasted cheese sandwich and, a nostalgic local favourite, luncheon meat and egg sandwich made with crustless white Hong Kong bread.

Boy n Burger, G/F, Shop 3, 208 Johnston, 206 Johnston Road, Wan Chai, Hong Kong, +852 3686 0928

Happy Paradise new seasonal dishes

I’d argue that it’s always a missed opportunity whenever a visit to Happy Paradise doesn’t include an order of the notable Szechuan fried chicken. Now, it’s also another missed opportunity if you don’t get a reservation at the modern Chinese eatery for a sampling of the venue’s new seasonal menu. It’s an innovative blend of local flavours with global profiles, much like many of the permanent serves, and includes dishes that reach towards chef May’s roots. The Impossible Pork Dan Dan noodles and pork belly and octopus are both nods to the chef’s Shanghainese heritage, while the dim sum-style scallop taro puff and midnight ‘claypot’ rice made with Cantonese dried seafood (hoi mei; 海昧) stock and topped with fresh market catch –– anything from uni to red prawn and blue lobster –– play into local favourites. Also on the menu: A Rubia Gallega steak that mimics Sichuan flavours with a Turkish Urfa chilli vinaigrette and a whole roasted turbot finished with a drizzle of scallion vinaigrette and yuzu soy glaze. Whatever you do end up trying though, don’t skip out of the chicken. It’s delicious.

Happy Paradise, UG/F, 52-56 Staunton Street, Central, Hong Kong, +852 2816 2118

Chapter 6 ‘Legume Complexion’ of Cobo House’s The Knife and Spoon

The sixth edition of Cobo House’s The Knife and Spoon series gestures towards the everyday legume; small, unassuming and most likely ones left behind on a plate. But for this time, it’s the centre of executive head chefs Ray and Devon’s original menu. Coincidentally, the ingredient is also an autumn season favourite, said to combat dryness and alleviate heat, and once recreated in Cobo House’s signature dainty dishes, will no longer be relegated to just another ordinary produce.

Inspired by the ancient Chinese saying, “Five-grains nourishes. Amongst, legume is the inevitable nutrient.” (五穀宜為養,失豆則不良。), the menu is designed to showcase the legume under different lenses through drawing from various cuisines. The menu opens with a sugar snap peas served with Shine Muscat gram foam appetiser; toothfish marinated in Korean soy bean paste and red lentils, then pan-fried and served with a tangy daikon broth; Japanese tempura soft-shell crab folded between a thin Mexican blue-corn taco, flavoured with snow peas and chick peas fried with beef cecina. And finally, the sweet finish of a Yuba mille-feuille garnished with soy sauce powder and served with a soy sauce caramelised ice cream –– a dedicated showcase of the soybean.

Cobo House’s ‘Chapter 6 – Legume Complexion’ is available from now through 30 November. The menu is available in three seatings: Silhouette Experience (four courses at HK$680), Abstract Experience (six courses at HK$1,180) and Full Experience (eight courses at HK$1,480). Reservations can be made here.

Cobo House, Shop 602, 6/F, K11 Musea, 18 Salisbury Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon, Hong Kong, +852 2656 3088

A Spark of Madness’ ‘Spark’ sauces

You might recognise ‘A Spark of Madness’. They hosted their first pop-up dinner at Hatch back in August. Now, founder and Le Cordon Bleu-trained chef Simran Savlani is launching her own cookbook, A Spark of Madness, filled with over 100 Asian Vegetarian recipes. Some, as Savlani describes, are classics, while others have been flourished with a flavourful, eponymous ‘spark of madness’ themselves. Also are releases of a trio of Asian sauces, ‘Spark’, all handmade by Savlani in Hong Kong. It features a classic Crispy Chili Oil made with seven spices and five types of chillis; Caramelized Spring Onion, slow-cooked spring onions soaked in a ginger and sesame marinade; and lastly, an intriguing Crack Sauce, which Savlani cryptically describes only as “The Palate Awakener’. Guess that means you’ve got to try it for yourself.

Should you be tempted by a taste of Savlani’s tasty dishes, she’s hosting a second series at the Test Kitchen from 20 to 22 October.

Follow for more A Spark of Madness updates here.

Header and Featured image courtesy of Happy Paradise.

Lorria Sahmet
Editor
After two years of covering luxury retail, Lorria is thrilled to be writing in fashion, food and lifestyle here at Lifestyle Asia. When not roaming around garden centres hauling back new plants for her indoor jungle, find her hunting down the best fries in the city. She's happiest by the ocean with a fishbowl glass of ice-cold Aperol spritz.