Sunday, October 6, 2013

Hong Kong - Lunching at the Ritz Carlton

One of the biggest pluses about eating or drinking atop the 100+ storey Ritz Carlton is that the views are never the same.  And it is a stunning one no matter where you sit, no matter the weather and no matter the time of day.

Even when the clouds are so low that you can hardly see anything, it is but a different drama but dramatic nonetheless.

And on 102, there is a choice of Italian or Chinese.

Good breads on offer at Tosca are a welcome start especially the squid ink roll.

Bufala beef carpaccio, ricotta cheese cream, spring sprouts and homemade tomato jam

Grilled Octopus
Appetizers are decent enough although the centimeter thick beef carpaccio was a surprise.  Presentations were just short of stunning when compared with the view.  Produce used was superior so no real complaints there.  Pastas were only a so-so and my trio of spaghetti mounds with scampi and tomatoes were a just a tad underwhelming compared with the first course.  

Lemon tart with meringue
A citrusy sweet finish let us off with a happy enough ending and the meringue cigarettes were highly addictive.  So much so it stole the show from the tart itself.

If I could choose however, lunching at Tin Lung Heen is a little more exciting for the variety of dim sums that you can get.  Well, this is Hong Kong after all.

Baked Abalone Puffs with Minced Chicken
I haven't exhausted the menu yet but this is my favorite so far.  The abalone has a nice bite but isn't chewy and is a nice contrast to the crust which is firm but breaks down easily when in the mouth.

Baked Barbequed Buns
These are a nice alternative to traditional steamed BBQ pork buns.  A milky fragrant exterior that is fluffy with a good pork filling which was just a tad sweet for me.

Crispy roasted pork belly
Well, you can't really go wrong with this Cantonese roast staple.  TLH's version is a squatter piece which means the ratio of perfect crispy crackling to meat and fat is well, perfect.

Crispy noodle with Abalone and Chicken
This was a souped up version of the usual with the addition of abalone.  Crispy noodles well done and not greasy and abalones used were fresh and crunchy.  Lots of action on the palate with the different textures.  The fermented bean paste based sauce was surprisingly mild.

Poached Kailan with Conpoy
The use of good vegetables and conpoy came through in this really simple dish and it was a pleasure to enjoy the natural but diverse sweetness of both together.

Petit fours
The osmanthus jelly with wolfberries is a cool and light way to finish lunch without feeling like a tank before heading back to the office.  The floral scent may not be welcome by some but I love it and am usually sold to any dessert where it is represented.  Cashew cookies in the background were pretty decent too.

If you are looking to decompress and have a nice lunch where you can enjoy the views, decent food and actually converse without straining and still be heard, but don't mind paying for the experience, the Ritz actually isn't a bad choice.

Tin Lung Heen 天龍軒 | Tosca
Level 102, International Commerce Ctr.
1 Austin Road West
Kowloon, Hong Kong

Tel: +852-2263 2270

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