Bacchanalia's latest omakase menu is proof that fine dining isn't all that complicated
Stark white table cloths, service staff armed with perfectly-pressed blazers, and a visible Michelin sign framed up on the walls. These are the makings of a fine dining establishment; or in this case, Bacchanalia. The French restaurant at HongKong street has held on to their star for the past two years now, even through the transition of their new head chef, Luke Armstrong, replacing Chef Ivan Brehm, who stepped down last year to open Nouri.
And while we'd love to speculate about this year's Michelin grand reveal, we'll save that for another story. Under the steady, successful helm of Chef Luke, Bacchanalia has unveiled their latest Carte Blanche menu, which basically means omakase in European slang. It's strictly seasonal — boasting premium ingredients imported from Japan, Australia and France.
This also means the dishes switch up from time to time, depending on the day's shipment. In our case, we kicked off the experience with an amuse bouche — a lightly poached Ireland oyster served atop a bavarois of whole oyster, champagne, shallot and cream. It was fresh and succulent, complete with a dollop of glistening caviar. Not a shabby start at all.
A bowl of ravioli shows up next. And it's a pretty sizeable one — stuffed with Girolles mushrooms and a heady burst of black truffle. Mind you, this was just the first course, which made a delectable impression. This followed with a generous pan-roasted Hokkaido scallop, plated above an indulgent king crab salad (which had more crab flesh than greens) as well as sweet peas. To cut through the rich flavours, red pepper sauce and a sublime touch of lemon juice was drizzled over.
Our main dish already had irresistible smells wafting down the corridors as it made its way to the table. A lamb chop roasted medium rare and plated with a crisp Noirmoutier potatoes and artichoke. To top it off, there was the added visual of on-the-spot black truffle shavings, which we demolished within seconds alongside the other elements.
There was no way else around it — the decadent meal finished well with a beautiful dessert. A caramelised white chocolate and cognac tart, featuring a buttery custard encased in an addictive crust, paired with the tartness of a French strawberry and a winning glaze of champagne sabayon. It turned out to be the surprise saved best for last.
The underlying perk of Chef Luke's Carte Blanche menu? It obliterates any woes of a first-time diner by leaving it to the hands of the maestro to serve up the best choice. It's fine dining without the fuss.
39 HongKong Street, Tel: 6909 6360
Opening hours: (Tues-Sat) 12pm-2.30pm, 6pm-10.30pm