Hong Kong's best gourmet restaurant

Hong Kong's best gourmet restaurant

Big budgets, big expectations. Both are happily met at these big-time establishments

Recommended: Amber

best gourmet restaurant in hong kongGilded caviar on a bed of sea urchin -- this is what culinary obsession looks like.

The consistently superb modern French dishes and trendy presentation at Amber makes foodies like WOM guide co-founder Samanta Pong commend it as one of Hong Kong's best gourmet restaurants.

This is a place that serves foie gras lollipops made to look like Chupa Chups for amuse-bouche. Foams, molecular caviar and gelatins are all over the menu.

Dishes do venture into international waters, such as the popular Hokkaido sea urchin served in a lobster Jell-O with cauliflower, caviar and a crispy seaweed waffle. The gold flakes were inspired by the Japanese belief that a little ingested gold is good for health. It's a great gimmick that moves a lot of urchin.

The Amber staff is faultless. Servers, in particular, are relentlessly patient and knowledgeable, with that welcome Asian touch of slight over-attentiveness.

Breakfast: Monday-Sunday, 7-10:30 a.m. Lunch daily, 11:30 p.m.-2:30 p.m. Dinner: Monday-Saturday 6-10:30 p.m. Amber, 15 Queens Rd., Seventh Floor, The Landmark, Central, tel. +852 2132 0066. www.amberhongkong.com

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Recommended: 8 1/2 Otto e Mezzo BOMBANA

best gourmet restaurant in hong kongEven the most discerning gourmets can't resist the lure of the fryer.

Here's gourmet food done in a jovial, unfussy Italian way. People don't come to 8 1/2 Otto e Mezzo BOMBANA to dine. They come to eat.

Chef Umberto Bombana, formerly of the highly regarded Toscana at the old Ritz Carlton, has a zest for great food that translates perfectly to the dinner table.

Deceptively tricky to prepare, Bombana's robust comfort food shares table space with well-executed truffle dishes, for which he is justly famous.  

The classic veal Milanese is an eyebrow-raiser -- rich, sweet, tender, the organic Dutch veal is sliced and dressed at the table.

Desserts are contemporary and fun. Coffee is incarnated into surprising forms, such as chocolate and a creamy tiramisu.

Open daily, noon-10 p.m. 8 1/2 Otto e Mezzo BOMBANA, Shop 202, 2/F, Alexandra House, 5-17 Des Voeux Rd., Central, tel. +852 2537 8859

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Winner: Gaddi's

best gourmet restaurant in hong kongSuckling pig at Gaddi's.

Inside The Peninsula hotel, Gaddi's is one of Hong Kong's grandest dining rooms.

Everything is Euro posh: silver candelabras at the table, live, unobtrusive band, strict dress code, service with the right amount of snoot. 

The food matches -- and is what keeps food writer-blogger KC coming back.

Chef David Goodridge's classic modern French is consistently high quality, satisfying the great expectations of high rollers.

The suckling pig is steamed then crisped -- a spiced sausage made from the pig's head and a slow-cooked loin all cohabit under a sage foam, arranged within painstakingly detailed garnishes.

This includes a spectacular brown calvados jus is made with gravy trimmings and distilled apples brandy from Brittany, a warm and creamy cauliflower puree, lightly battered miniature cauliflower florets and crisp Romaine lettuce.

This is European pride you can taste.

Open daily, noon-2:30 p.m., 7-10:30 p.m. Gaddi's, 1/F, The Peninsula Hong Kong, 19-21 Salisbury Rd., Tsim Sha Tsui, tel. +852 2315 3171, www.peninsula.com

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