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Oct 3, 2007 05:33 AM

Where to splurge in Hong Kong?

Hi, it's my parents' birthday at the end of this month and I want to treat them to an excellent meal in Hong Kong. They love to eat any cuisine but they don't enjoy overly stuffy and quiet types of restaurants.

Any thoughts?


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  1. Aqua - Choice of Japanese or Italian, with great view

    1. Most any place where you would like to spend money or "splurge" would be automatically deemed stuffy in most peoples head (i.e. places like SPOON, Petrus, or Gaddi's are the first places I thought of when you say splurge - but these can be overly stuffy and quiet).

      They love to eat everything which is great - but what are you looking for to impress them.

      What are your initial thoughts - do you want to dine on any cuisine you think they would prefer over something else - also where - Kowloon, HK, or anywhere else you might want to go to.

      HK has a tonne of restaurants that you can splurge at - Aqua is a decent choice for a nice drink and the view but I have not enjoyed the food there the 2 times I have dined there (both times on someone else's dime) but who am I to complain about a free meal albeit a strange fusion menu - but that is just me.

      If you can provide some more info - I would be more than happy to give some more suggestions.

      2 Replies
      1. re: FoodCad

        I would go for Hutong over Aqua, it has the same great view and I LOVE the food! It's sort of high-end contemporary Northern Chinese. The lamb ribs and spicy crabs are an absolute must. I have heard mixed reviews of the food at Aqua.


        1. re: FoodCad

          Thanks FoodCad for your probing questions! In terms of location, staying in HK island would be better. It's really difficult to pinpoint a cuisine they like more because they'll eat anything.

          I hope this helps!

        2. Rainbow Seafood on Lamma Island. I posted about it below. You can definitely spend some bucks there ordering live fish from the tank. Lobsters, crabs, etc. You dine outdoors and look out into the Lamma Island harbour. It's definitely not stuffy nor quiet.

          1 Reply
          1. re: PeterL

            Rainbow is very touristy and while the seafood is good, the decor/atmosphere is non-existent. You may also come to realize why Hong Kong is the "fragrant" harbor when the breeze comes through.

          2. I just got back from Hong Kong this week. My vote would be for Agnes B Le Pain Grille in Causeway Bay. French food with great ingredient sourcing, nice execution and good service. They even make lovely non-alcoholic drinks. Its a very small restaurant & is certainly popular so you won't find it quiet. Fabulous desserts too.

            In terms of places to avoid, don't go to Opia (in the JIA boutique hotel). Lovely setting and service but the food is extremely hit and miss (mostly miss sadly). Australian chef doing Thai fusion and failing to fuse the strong Thai spices and flavours.

            Hope you've a great night!

            6 Replies
            1. re: WhiskeyGirl

              Can you provide more detail on Agnes B Le Pain Grille? What dishes did you have? Is it a bistro that serves Steak frites, skate wing and Coq au vin etc or is it more 'haute cuisine'? Is it inside a hotel or a stand alone establishment? The full address would be greatly appreciated. My brother happens to work in Causeway Bay, so, if it is a great eating destination, I can conveniently meet him there for lunch or dinner.Thx in advance!

              1. re: Charles Yu

                This is the address: Shop 1, G/F, 111 Leighton Road, Causeway Bay, Hong Kong
                2577 2718
                I haven't been personally, but have heard good things, and I think it's more of the bistro variety.


                1. re: alexthepink

                  Agnes B - some more is located on the corner by the traffic lights on Leighton (not in a hotel) and is located under the Agnes B designer clothing store - apparently same ownership.

                  The menu is in French and contains some of the traditional French bistro items (moules marniere etc) but isn't confined to them and has a more haute spin on other items e.g. Moules Toulouse Lautrec which uses absinthe as the cooking liquid. What I appreciated most about the food was;

                  1. Traditional French cooking methods (lots of slow-cooking, on the bone etc).
                  2. Quality of ingredients - organic, well-sourced, much of it imported from France.

                  We ordered mussels (marniere - lovely), a beef tenderloin with black truffles (a special that night), and a chicken dish (slow cooked onion and wine reduction). Normally, I wouldn't order chicken but I had a feeling they'd do it right and they did. The portions are not huge but you'll have room for dessert. They make a nice tarte aux pommes. It is not particularly sweet, which is how I prefer it, but the caramel ice-cream makes up for that.

                  The wine list is well-thought out. I was tempted by the non-alcholic drinks too and had La Douceur which (I hope I'm getting this right) was a puree of strawberry, peach and Badoit sparkling water with a fresh apple ring on the side. I think it tells you something when even the apple garnish tasted like a proper, non-waxed, fresh, orchard apple.

                  I think it would be a perfect spot for a lunch. One thing which I did not personally get to try but did get to observe the face of the diner was the chocolate souffle. A woman on a date had been completely enrapt by her handsome companion and their conversation throughout the meal. UNTIL she started eating the souffle dessert. She was enjoying it so much that she didn't lift her head and just nodded idly while employing her spoon to get at every last bite.

                  1. re: WhiskeyGirl

                    Thanks a lot for your detailed response. Will defimitely give it a try during my next trip. Last question, How much was the meal? Average price of appertizers and entrees...etc. Thanks again!

                    1. re: Charles Yu

                      I don't have the breakdown (can't find the receipt) but the total for one app, two mains, one dessert, a bottle of crozes hermitage wine and a juice puree drink was 1300HKD including a tip. I hope that helps. :)

            2. Splurge but not stuffy eh:

              Man Wah for fine Cantonese with a twist, top of Mandarin Oriental
              China Club: colonial classic, great experience
              Amber: fashionable interior with smart food at Landmark MOriental
              Atelier Robuchon: 3 star Michelin Chef in Landmark building (also Pierre in MO)
              Frog Face Fish on Wyndham serves excellent fish
              La Terrasse top of Old Bailey has a lovely sedate ambience about it, it's very intimate with friendly service, loved the experience
              Just for fun? Take 'em to one of the amazing sea food restaurants at the Lamma Island pier