Petrus, Caprice or Amber?
Posted 15 July 2011 - 03:23 PM
Posted 15 July 2011 - 07:54 PM
Of the others, I'd go for Caprice or Amber - both are excellent. You might also want to consider Cepage.
Posted 17 July 2011 - 06:48 PM
Caprice is also great, lovely view, very good service and solid classical cooking. Compared to Robuchon and Amber perhaps a tad less interesting in terms of food. However, what makes Caprice stand out are the cheeses and the desserts. The former are perhaps the best there are in the world (not only me thinking that!) and the latte delicious.
Petrus is a perfectly decent restaurant, but simply not on the same level. THe menu reads like that of the LOuis XV in Monte Carlo, but doesn't deliver on product quality or flavour.
There you have it, if you can do two: Robuchon and Amber!
Posted 23 March 2012 - 03:12 PM
From the kitchen to the dining room, from the ingredients to the plate, from amuse bouches to petits fours, everything flows seamlessly.
Full meal here:
Posted 22 May 2013 - 09:40 PM
Amber, the signature restaurant of the Landmark Oriental, actually has been in my radar since 07-08 but somehow it failed to persuade me. I read some mixed reviews discussing about inconsistent performances at Amber; instead at that time I opted for dinners at Caprice and Pierre – when both restaurants just opened. Recently, Amber has become the talks among Asian’ critics and bloggers alike, in the positive way of course. 2-michelin star, HK top restaurant (according to Tatler and Restaurant magazine ‘Asia version’) and Miele’s top 10 are some accolades that the restaurant has received. Hence, I really cannot help it that Amber became a “must try” place when I visited to Hong Kong last month.
Amber has been lead by the hotel’s Executive Chef, Richard Ekkebus – a Holland-born man who has been trained in France under some nouvelle cuisines genius such as Chef Passard, Gagnaire and Savoy. I usually like the cooking of L’Arpege alumni chefs. Chef Ekkebus shared that Alain Passard was a demanding chef but he learned a lot from the vegetable master during his stint there. In the past 2 years or so, the day to day kitchen operation has actually been managed and executed by Paul Froggat, the chef de cuisine who used to work at Saint Pierre Singapore. Nowadays, Chef Ekkebus role is more like Yannick Alleno or Franck Cerutti; most of the time, they will focus on the hotel’s kitchen overall performances. I went for lunch and decided to savor the degustation menu since many have said that the portions at Amber are relatively small.
From the total of 8 dishes, I enjoyed very much nearly half of them.
- The famous Hokkaido uni was decadent and always worked well with caviar. There was a smooth cauliflower ‘cream’ underneath to bring additional depth for this dish; the seaweed waffle added texture contrast as well as balance the rich cauliflower & lobster gelee. The only problem for me: there’re too much cauliflower and not enough sea urchin. Also, I cannot help to compare this dish with Waku Ghin’s botan ebi, uni and caviar dish .. I would say Wakuda-san’s dish is slightly more superior due to the fresh and sweei of Japanese shrimp
- The New Zealand seared langoustine was well executed; it's tender and slightly sweet. The puree and bergamot enhanced the overall experience of the dish. As long as you have high quality langoustine, the side dishes are secondary
- The A4 wagyu was cooked medium rare; the beef was buttery, tender and succulent as expected. The short ribs was rich and decadent, nicely complemented by mustard onion. However, I found that the caramelized shallot (black 'puree') was too intense. Japanese wagyu is generally a safe choice for main course at any Asian fine dining place; more adventurous foodies should try lamb, duck or pigeon – the kinds of meats that French cooking usually does fantastic job
The sayori dish as the opening course was alright, teasing your palate. Somehow, I wasn’t too impressed by Chef Ekkebus singnature smoked salmon confit probably due to the squid ink bread crumb that covered the fish was too salty. Moreover, its side dishes (avocado mousse and a couple forms of green apple) were ordinary. I usually avoid cheese course unless when I dine in Europe for ‘strange’ reasoning: Asian generally dislike (farmer) cheese so I often wonder how long those cheeses have been around in the restaurant untouched. Though I could be mistaken ... Whenever you have multiple desserts in any degustation menu, the pattern is almost always: one will be fruit-based and the other will chocolate-based.
-The fruity dessert (william pear with dried fruits, yoghurt and biscuit) features sweet and sour taste with soft and crunchy texture – OK; I prefer my cheese replacement: Amaho strawberry - sweet and refreshing, served in earthy hibiscus with pepperand soft cold granite.
-Chocolate souffle: a common French dessert that's perfectly executed with high quality ingredients (Abinao 85% chocolate). The souffle was sweet and smooth in contrast to the bitter sorbet; a very comforting dessert towards the end of the meal
Verdict for food: 93 pts (about 2 ½* by Michelin standard). If the degustation menu represents the best items Amber can offer, it has a long way to go for the Red guide 3rd star. I hope it may not be the case
Amber is not only famous for its food, but also its decor. The dining room is grand and elegant; nobody could not help but notice the suspended chandelier consisting of more than 4000 bronze rods designed by Adam Tihany, a renowned interior designer. The distance between tables are spacious while the couch & booths are comfortable. The center piece is filled with floral arrangements inside slender black vases. It’s essential for the restaurant to have a beautiful dining room since it has no views of Victoria harbour/Kowloon peninsula
The service in Amber is generally good with some contrast between local and foreign “waiters”. Like in Singapore, the local waiters tend to be (or tried to be) more formal and rather stiff; they’re knowledgable about the dishes though it looked robotic when they described the food. Luckily, I was also often servd and entertained by Hector Lugo, a Mexican assistant manager – he’s easy going and has vast knowledge about hospitality in general. Towards the end, I got a chance to have a chat with Monsieur Noyelle, the restaurant manager who had been trained for almost a decade as maitre d’ under Denis Courtiade (Ducasse Paris); no wonder his service was smooth. I don’t know how, but I wish Asian maitre d’ could have “more interesting” personality so that they can ‘connect’ with their guests better
Overall experience: 93/100 and I agree with Michelin’s assesment thus far
Here are the pictures of the dishes: https://picasaweb.go...erHongKongChina
Edited by Bu Pun Su, 22 May 2013 - 09:42 PM.