Found in the heart of Causeway Bay, and helmed by Michelin-star chef Simon Rogan, Roganic offers diners a forward-thinking and elegant approach to seasonal farm-to-table dining.
District: Causeway Bay, Hong Kong
Cuisine: Farm-to-table, seasonal British
How much: $980 for 10-course Roganic Long Tasting Menu; $680 for eight-course Roganic Short Tasting Menu; $280 for Roganic Three-Course Set Lunch Menu
Must order: Roganic Long Tasting Menu for the full experience, or the Roganic Three-Course Set Lunch Menu for a value for money taster
The best for: Impressing out of town visitors, a special occasion dinner or a high-end lunch
Since opening in February this year, Roganic Hong Kong has already impressed diners with its elevated farm-to-table cuisine. For those in the know, this will come as no surprise, as the restaurant was brought to Hong Kong by Michelin-starred chef, Simon Rogan. With two Michelin stars under his belt for L’Enclume in England’s Lake District, and another one star for Roganic London, Simon Rogan knows how to “fancify” simple ingredients, and that’s what Roganic is all about. Its philosophy is centred on celebrating the best quality ingredients, and has a strong focus on all things seasonal – even going so far as sourcing many of its produce from farms in the New Territories.
But does this approach to dining equate to an enjoyable experience? With no a la carte option available (Roganic offers a long tasting menu, short tasting menu and a three-course set lunch), diners here are in it for the long haul. But although some tasting menus can feel somewhat tired, we found our experience at Roganic to be neither drawn out or overly fussy. We opted for the 10-course Long Tasting Menu, and were surprised at the pace the dishes came out of the kitchen. Refreshingly, each course is also presented to the table by a member of the kitchen team, meaning that even with some of the more intricate dishes, you can be sure that you’ll know exactly what you’re tucking into. Plus the chef’s obvious enthusiasm for the dishes helps to lessen what could become a more formal dining experience.
A 10-course tasting menu is a subjective experience, and diners may expect to encounter culinary highs and lows, but this wasn’t the case for us at Roganic. We had standout dishes for sure, but each course that was presented to us was met with eager anticipation and plenty of genuine noises of approval. Beginning with a highlight, we loved the pea, cod roe, caviar – a one-bite-wonder of crisp pastry, fresh peas and just a hint of the sea. To my surprise, I also loved the truffle pudding – an indulgent croissant pastry rectangle, flavoured with truffle puree. I find that truffle can be overused in our fair city, but the flavour here was in no way overwhelming, allowing the buttery croissant to speak for itself.
We also enjoyed the delicate dish of mackerel, apple, oyster, which was a burst of freshness after the heavy truffle pudding. Making everything fresh daily in house, it comes as no surprise that the soda bread and cultured butter was a standout for us. Dense, muffin-like, and topped with oats and a sprinkle of brown sugar to create a sweet crust, it was heavenly paired with the softened butter. From the main dishes, the star for us was the beautiful codfish, broccoli, roast bone. Delicately roasted and served with a broccoli purée and a creamy, rich foam made from fish bones, the dish may have been our favourite of the entire meal.
Desserts are in no short supply at Roganic, with two dishes included in the 10-course menu to sate any sweet cravings. But before we enjoyed the earl grey, beetroot (earl grey ice cream with a beetroot reduction and shards of French meringue) and the stout, molasses, burnt milk (stout ice cream served with molasses sauce and burnt milk wafers), we tucked into the tunworth cheese, hazelnut, cranberry (additional $130). Rounding up the trio of ice creams, the unique savoury dessert may divide the crowds, but we savoured the strong tunworth cheese ice cream, which was married with a sweet and sticky cranberry jam and topped with crunchy hazelnuts, making for a non-traditional take on the classic cheese plate. For those looking for something a little more substantial than ice cream, have no fear, as Roganic also offers an extra surprise sweet ending in the form of bite size pieces of cherry cake, coupled with light and airy sugar-crusted ring doughnuts.
To complete your experience, both the short and the long tasting menus offer wine pairings ($680 for full, or $580 for short), along with a non-alcoholic juice and tea pairing for an additional $280. With refreshing drinks on offer such as fresh ginger and lime soda and a still chamomile tea cocktail, those who aren’t drinking needn’t feel left out.
Our verdict: Roganic is perfect for those who want a special occasion dining experience without any of the pomp that fine dining can entail. The dishes are unique and undoubtedly technical, but still tick all the boxes when it comes to flavour, value for money and leaving you satisfied.
Roganic is open Tuesday to Sunday for lunch from 12pm to 2pm; and for dinner from 6pm to 9pm (closed on Mondays). Book online here.
Roganic, Sino Plaza, UG/F 08, 255 Gloucester Road, Causeway Bay, Hong Kong, www.roganic.com.hk
Featured image courtesy of Roganic Hong Kong, all further images courtesy of Annie Simpson and property of Sassy Media Group.