Sunday, March 24, 2013

Tales From The Topographic Ocean

The first time when I was in Hong Kong; back in January – I manage to eat a number of Hong Kong’s must-have, must-try, must-eat signature dishes. However this time around, I get to try a lot of the upmarket gourmet food :) Actually, there are many international expatriates who are working in Hong Kong, thus like KL, there are also quite a number of specialize restaurants around. There's so much to be had. A very good balance.

Wooloomooloo Bar & Grill – I know, what a funny name isn’t it? :) It immediately reminds me of Woolies (Woolworths; a retail chain in Australia) or a restaurant that serves good lamb dishes (wool is from lamb after all). Wooloomooloo (what a mouthful) is an Australian Steak House. It is situated on 29 Wyndham Street Central. The bright lighting and well-spaced tables provide intimacy, while an open kitchen allows the diners to share the drama from nearly all vantage points in the large room. The diners can also enjoy the spectacular city waterfront view while enjoying their meal. The ambience is contemporary, stylish, sophisticated, and definitely relaxing. There were many expatriates in their smart casual attire around too. I enjoy my three-course lunch very much; my mouth quivers, my eyes roll back and my chest sighs with pleasure of the taste & texture :) But I find it to be a bit too oily for my liking though.

ARUN THAI – it is an upscale Thai restaurant specializing in modern, yet classic Royal Thai cuisine that boasts an array of exquisite Thai dishes and an extensive wine list. It's located in the newest mall in Tsim Shat Sui, K11. Apparently it is co-owned by the multi-award-winning Australian Celebrity Chef and restaurateur Chef Kham Signavong. It is the sister restaurant of Arun Thai in Sydney, Australia. The décor of Arun Thai, is like the concept for the menu, is modern with a traditional twist. The restaurant uses a dark colored palate with various textures to create a contemporary vibe. The color scheme matches very well with the red bar stools and red light fixtures on the ceiling. However, I find that their lighting is too dim, thus it is a bit hard to read the menu in the dark. I practically have to squint my eyes to read it. The seating area is not really that spacious, we keep on bumping into each other hands & elbows, thus creating quite an uncomfortable environment for fine-dining. Their menu is extensive, including dishes made with various kinds of fresh seafoods, meats and vegetables. We had their green curry, tom yam soup, pandan chicken, fried fish cake…all are very fresh and are perfect meals for dinner. The flavors of all of the dishes are very well balanced too.

Now, I love street food and occasionally I don’t mind some luxury food indulgence too. The difference between the two (where ever you are, which ever the country you are in) is the food preparation itself. The most significant is the meticulous attention to every step of the selection, preparation, cooking, and presentation of the food. This means that meats and seafoods are deboned, thoroughly cleaned and neatly cut before cooking, and vegetables are finely sliced and cut into perfectly bit-sized pieces. This attention to detail is carried through in the arrangement and presentation of the food on the plate. That’s why we always pay more :) There is a belief that dining like royalty, one benefits from all of the harmony and blessings that comes from consuming such regal treats.

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