Saturday, March 10, 2018

ON Dining Kitchen & Lounge (Hong Kong, CHINA) ★★★☆☆

Saturday marked the first of my two Restaurant Week bookings in their Spring 2018 edition. It also happened to be my first visit to ON Dining Kitchen and Lounge since their first week of operation back in 2014. It's been a long time coming.

Most Restaurant Week participating restaurants fall under one of two categories - Category A ($118) and Category B ($198) but ON Dining Kitchen & Lounge is in a bit of a different league, a small group of elite restaurants ($298) thanks to these hardware.

Service started off pretty slowly with just one server on the 29th floor dining room (taking care of 6-7 tables). I don't think I want to be in her shoes for this lunch service.

Scallop ceviche, radish, red onion, chili, oyster dressing - Something refreshing to start the meal? Why not? I thought this was just okay. The oyster dressing was expected to be rich and dominating but instead it was almost missing in action.

Eggs ravioli, lobster, pilaf rice, lobster bisque, curry - Much better than the previous scallop dish. The "eggs ravioli" was in fact, poached egg served with an open raviolo on top along with pieces of pineapple, raisins, pilaf rice and shallots. So, there's a bit of Mediterranean twist in there.

I thought the poached egg complemented the raviolo pretty nicely, with the lobster bisque and a hint of curry doing good work behind the scene. 

Hake, mash potato, spicy squid, tomatoes, black olives - A pretty simple dish. The surprising key here was the spicy squid providing the steamed hake with an extra kick.

French yellow chicken, pearl barley, morel sauce - Fairly decent. the morels were nice but didn't really enjoy the pearl barley.

Cheesecake, apricot jam, raspberry - We finally got our first wow of the meal but it's already dessert time. There's a major difference between this dessert and the previous dishes - the plating (At least they spent time doing something with the presentation).

The citrusy cheesecake with Grand Marnier sorbet, apricot jam and freeze-dried raspberry was very tasty. But too little too late.

As the meal progressed, it looked more and more like we were dining at Upper Modern Bistro, ON Dining's casual sister. None of the dishes displayed enough flair and creativity expected from a restaurant with a Michelin star. They were all good bistro-caliber food. That's all. On the service side, it was even more disappointing. While I could sympathize with the lone staff entrusted with the daunting task of servicing everyone on the 29th floor, her performance was not really up to the usual high standard of casual fine dining restaurant.

Strike one (Second Restaurant Week booking coming up next week).

Food Rating: 5.5/10
Price: $$$$
Address: 29/F, 18 On Lan Street, Central, Hong Kong
Closest Metro Station: Central
Tel: +852 2174-8100

ON Dining Kitchen & Lounge Hong Kong Michelin star French restaurant chef Philippe Orrico Restaurant Week Spring 2018 edition

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