Saturday, June 10, 2017

Caprice (Hong Kong, CHINA) ★★★★☆

The swapping of chef de cuisine at Caprice and The Tasting Room has officially completed last month with chef Fabrice Vulin, formerly of Caprice, taking over the reign at The Tasting Room in Macau while chef Guillaume Galliot going the other way. This is something that is extremely rare and unusual in the fine dining business but as someone who is less curious about what has happened behind the scene, all I care about is how it would translate to the new menus on both sides.



Amid much anticipation, chef Galliot finally launched his new menu in mid June, his first since arriving at Caprice (And good to know that the prices remain unchanged).



Like most foodies in Hong Kong, I was really looking forward to this but before we got into the thick of things, a small amuse bouche helped to set the tone. The foie gras crème brûlée came with some crushed hazelnut on top. Not bad.



Lunch officially started with a seafood tartare that was served with lobster jelly and flying fish roe. When I got the first glimpse of this, I couldn't help but think of another similar dish - the lovely starter of lobster jelly, creamy avocado and prawns that I grew to like so much at Seasons by Olivier E.

Funny how this is also reminiscent of our traditional Chinese steamed meat pie (蒸肉餅). Sitting on top were diced lobster and crystal prawn mixed with little cucumber cubes while topped with dabs of flying fish roes and avocado cream. This whole thing was placed on top of a thin layer of lobster jelly which was surprisingly light and mild in flavor. Pretty good start but it could have been even better if they made the jelly a little stronger.



Second course was an exuberant pairing of poached lobster, green pea fricassé and oyster emulsion.



This was very delicious. I never like lobster with heavy seasoning so this was just perfect. The oyster emulsion was obviously the catalyst here providing a nice finishing touch to the elegant dish.



My meat course was Racan pigeon served with shallot purée, popcorn, stuffed confit legs and jus.



The pigeon was really nicely done while the shallot and popcorn provided different textures to the mix.



Ever since the arrival of pastry chef Nicholas Lambert, desserts have become a very memorable part of our meals at Caprice. While chef Lambert's signature Fraisier Gariguette was not on the menu today, there were 3 pretty exciting options for us to choose from.

The first was a combination of almond sablé, cherry cream, roasted cherry and Kirsch chantilly which I thought was pretty refreshing. Never hurt to have a bit of wine there to spice things up too.



But I was even more impressed with the second dessert, crispy hazelnut, chocolate biscuit, Macae cream and hazelnut praline.



My love affair with hazelnut praline goes way back and this was a good-looking dessert that used hazelnut praline brilliantly along with chocolate and Macae cream. A very nice exclamation point to this wonderful meal.



Mignardises were the usual suspects of profiteroles (coffee flavor?), macaron (raspberry) and dark chocolate.



Despite just hitting the ground running, chef Galliot showed us a glimpse of what we could expect from his kitchen which is a very elegant interpretation of modern French cuisine. I will definitely come back in a few months to check on their progress once again.

Food Rating: 7/10
Price: $$$$
Address: 6/F, 8 Finance Street, Four Seasons Hotel, Central, Hong Kong
Closest Metro Station: Hong Kong Station
Tel: +852 3196-8860
Website: www.fourseasons.com/hongkong/dining/restaurants/caprice


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