I’ve been lucky enough to have reviewed three of The Peninsula Hong Kong’s glamorous restaurants so far, and I was wowed by every single one. Last but by no means least on my list was Gaddi’s, the hotel’s almost 60-year-old French restaurant.
Gaddi’s is an institution in Hong Kong, enticing customers both with its delicious French cuisine and stunning décor, consisting of a rich blue and gold carpet, beautiful chandeliers and silver candelabras; it gives off elegance, sophistication and charm from the moment you step into the private lift to the first floor.
A live band set the scene, playing soft jazz as well as other classics, while we sipped on a glass of The Peninsula’s own brand champagne and gorged on the delicious amuse bouche of salmon tartare with cucumber foam.
The meal proper, prepared by Chef Remi van Peteghem, began with a gorgeous duck liver terrine made with apple cider and served with chunks of red and green apple and apple purée, plus the softest and fluffiest of brioches. I have always had foie gras paired with citrus fruits, yet this combination worked perfectly; the sweet and sharp chunks of apple cut through the terrine, creating a rich, buttery starter that I could not resist polishing off.
To follow this came scampi in two ways – fresh raw scampi wrapped in rice paper, and tender roasted scampi garnished with blood orange and coriander purée, lime peel and grated lime and orange zest. I loved the differing textures of the two components and how the touches of citrus brought out even deeper flavours in the dish.
Next, a fillet of John Dory poached in milk was absolutely divine, topped with a black truffle crust and thin slivers of celery, served with black truffle foam and celery purée. Whilst celery and black truffle are normally very strong flavours, here they were lovely and delicate, serving to enhance the flavour of the fish as opposed to overpowering it.
The last of the main courses was a wonderfully autumnal dish of roasted venison with a juniper crust, served alongside roasted pumpkin, Brussels sprouts leaves, sweet potato crisps, and chestnut and cranberry purées. Everything from the perfectly cooked venison to the delicious accompanying vegetables was absolutely faultless! Each of our dishes throughout was also paired with a brilliantly selected wine that complemented and enhanced each course.
I had had my eye on the cheese trolley from the moment we arrived, so it would have been rude not to sample some cheese to finish off our wine with! A plate of Bleu d’Auvergne, Beaufort, Mont d’Or, Morbier and Pont-l’Evêque was laid before us, each morsel just as good as the next – although my favourite would have to be the smooth, creamy Pont-l’Evêque.
After a brief interlude dancing with the Filipina singer to some Latino classics, we returned to our seats for the final act of the night: whisky parfait with chestnut soup and a chocolate mousse-filled doughnut. This deliciously sweet dessert was paired not with wine, but with a glass of 12-year Macallan whisky. I’m not normally a whisky drinker, but if it’s part of the experience then who can deny it?!
Simply because there is always room for chocolate, we chose a small selection from the chocolate trolley (why doesn’t every restaurant have a chocolate trolley?!) to round off our meal, leaving us wishing we could spend every Friday night here!
Although the other Peninsula restaurants were each incredible, Gaddi’s is most definitely my favourite. The fact that 60 years on it still exudes the class and sophistication that has long since been forgotten in most corners of the city is bound to fill you with happiness and nostalgia for that glamorous Hong Kong of old. A meal such as ours including a wine pairing will set you back around $2400 per head, but I can guarantee it will be worth every cent!
Gaddi’s 1/F, The Peninsula Hong Kong, 19-21 Salisbury Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Hong Kong
2696 6763 www.peninsula.com/…
Check out more from Ale on her fab blog, The Dim Sum Diaries!