Review: Bistro du Vin
1D Davis Street, Kennedy Town
Tel: 2824 3010
Open: noon-2pm (closed for lunch on Tuesdays), 6pm-10pm
Price: about HK$400 for a three-course meal without drinks or the service charge.
Ambience: the space is long and narrow but it doesn't feel claustrophobic because of the high ceiling. Tables are close together so don't come here if you want a private conversation. The walls are covered with vintage-looking French signs, posters and knick-knacks.
Pros: we liked most of our dishes, and portion sizes are generous. There are hooks under the table for handbags. The menu is brief, listing many classic French dishes such as escargots, duck confit and bouillabaisse for two.
Cons: the only real complaint is that my guest, who asked for a kir that was "not too pink", was served one that was very pink - it had too much cassis.
Recommended dishes: the brandade (HK$95) with house-made salted cod was piled high on a slice of bread. The potato and salted cod mixture, flecked with chopped parsley, was nicely balanced and didn't need the runny-yolk egg or the hollandaise served with it. The charcuterie platter of house-made rillettes, thinly sliced sausage and a thick slice of pâté were varied and delicious, although crunchy crusted plain white bread to eat with the meats would have been better than the sliced bread served to every table. The suckling pig confit (HK$230 for a leg, HK$210 for the belly) had been poached in fat before being baked to crisp the skin. The meat was wonderfully succulent. Some people might have an issue with the thin layer of fat under the skin, but they probably shouldn't order this dish anyway. The skin looked undercooked, but when it was cut, it was delicately crisp.
What else? Bistro du Vin is operated by the Singapore-based Les Amis group, which also has Cepage in Wan Chai and the Piccolo pizzerias.