Sunday, 17 November 2013

ABC Spells Delicious

The menu placed on the place setting at ABC Kitchen
I'd heard about a western restaurant called ABC Kitchen in Sheung Wan that was very good but had yet to try it. It's run by ex-M on the Fringe staff who lost their jobs after the restaurant had to close in 2009 after it was pushed out due to new government regulations.

The lamb shank was one of the highlights of the evening
Some of the staff wanted to continue doing similar fine dining but not have to give in to landlords and pay exorbitant rents, so they found a spot in a dai pai dong. Why not?

It's not in the Sheung Wan wet market, but a bit further west at Queen's Terrace, next to Hotel Ibis. On the first floor is a cooked food centre where ABC Kitchen rubs shoulders with restaurants serving Cantonese, Indian and Nepalese, and northern Chinese-style dumplings.

The atmosphere is noisy, with kids running around and the decor isn't much to look at, the area is relatively clean. What sets ABC apart from the others is the red and white checkered table clothes, printed menus at eat place setting and wine glasses.

So was the lobster thermidor, a special dish offered tonight
I finally got to try it out tonight as a pre-birthday dinner with my cousins and it was quite a treat.

For starters the soup of the day was chestnut soup and it was a bit thin with some croutons and a dash of olive oil on top, though it had the chestnut flavour mixed in with a few other ingredients we couldn't quite decipher.

We ordered three mains and as the staff knew we were sharing, each dish came to the table one at a time. First off was the lamb shank with beans and mashed potato. The meat literally fell off the bone and went perfectly with the dry French red wine we were drinking -- with no corkage.

A signature dish here is the roast suckling pig and rightly so
Next came the special of the day, lobster thermidor -- two halves cooked with onions, a light curry sauce and baked with cheese on top. Even better the meat had been extracted, sliced up and then placed back in the shell for easy access. The lobster was cooked perfectly and wasn't too heavy with the cheese. My cousin even mopped up the sauce with some bread.  

Our final main was another favourite -- roast suckling pig. Served with mashed potatoes and red cabbage, it was also a succulent dish, the meat very tender contrasting with the crispy skin and we made sure we finished the plate practically clean.

Perfectly executed souffle
To finish off the meal we had two desserts and the cheese platter. The latter featured three cheeses with some dried apricots, nuts, grapes and crackers. The cheeses were relatively mild and not as interesting as the desserts.

Most impressive was the Grand Marnier souffle. It was quite large and tall, while the inside was cooked through with hardly any wetness. The taste was light and airy with a bit of crunchiness from the sugar at the bottom of the ramekin.

We also loved the pavlova, meringue with a mango sorbet topped with fruits like nectarine, strawberry, blueberry, raspberry, peach and kiwi with passionfruit sauce drizzled on top. The meringue itself was quite good, though a tad too sweet, but a refreshing combination with the fresh fruits and tart passionfruit sauce.

The bill came to HK$934 ($120) for the three of us not including the wine.

Sweet and tart pavlova with fresh fruit and passionfruit sauce
I also enjoyed watching a little boy, one of the owners' son, thoroughly enjoying his pavlova. He sat on his own quietly with his small spoon and digging into his dessert, savouring it and then taking another bite. So cute.

A little boy enjoying each bite of his pavlova
ABC Kitchen
Shop 7, Food Market
1 Queen Street
Sheung Wan
9278 8227

No comments:

Post a Comment