Newly opened: Shoreditch, gastropub in Kennedy Town, and Ta Vie, Central
Shoreditch (tel: 2242 3777) is a newly opened gastropub in Kennedy Town, a short walk from the MTR station. It has a laid-back feel, with large windows, hanging lights and lots of wood. But beware of the mosquitoes - they loved our legs.
The menu sounds delicious: crab cakes, ham hock terrine, grilled meats, treacle tart and Taywell British ice creams. But the execution needs some work.
For starters, the flash-fried scallops (HK$138) were bland, but the bits of bacon and black pudding were more interesting. The grilled ox tongue salad (HK$118) - three uneven slices of meat - fared better.
We had high hopes for the St Mungo battered cod (HK$188). The portion was large enough - two decent-sized fillets that were well cooked but under-seasoned. It came with double-fried hand-cut chips that were not crisp enough, either because they were cut too thick, or the oil wasn't hot enough.
We liked the braised ox cheek (HK$198, above) with its rich sauce served with celeriac mash and baby carrots. Another highlight was the moist sticky toffee pudding (HK$98) with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.
Fans of Tenku RyuGin will know that chef de cuisine Hideaki Sato has opened Ta Vie (tel: 2668 6488) in The Pottinger in Central, where he uses a variety of culinary techniques to prepare Asian ingredients.
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