SPANISH WOK Upper G/F, Hilton Tower, 96 Granville Road, Tsim Sha Tsui East. Phone 321-2013.

ALL IS not lost in Hong Kong: there is a place where you can sample traditional regional Spanish fare and it is called the Spanish Wok. But be prepared to suffer slightly for the privilege. Seated on rock-hard chairs and surrounded by a poor man's version of the inside-out architecture that has made the Pompidou Centre in Paris famous, one wonders if this is the answer to Hong Kong's space problem.

Put all the fittings on the inside and you would have more room for tower blocks. If that isn't feast enough for the eyes then the mock-cubist wall hangings certainly leave food for thought as does giving your order to a camp Chinese waiter, complete with moustache, in Spanish dress. The service is, however, excellent. Attentive and polite without being overeager, our waiter was at our side when anything was required.

Spanish Wok does, as the name suggests, suffer slightly from a personality disorder. The food is predominantly influenced by the Catalan region of Spain but the menu contains a smattering of most things European, plus steaks from the good old US of A and, of course, Chinese.

Living in Hong Kong does not provide many opportunities to sample Spanish food and having fallen in love with it in another life there was never really any choice about the type of fare we would choose. We started with tapas, the small plates of usually heavily marinated morsels in oil. The champinones rellenos (mushrooms stuffed with spicy sausage), sweet red peppers in a mildly spicy sauce and prawns in chilli and garlic were excellent, leavened with a constant supply of garlic bread.

For a main course I opted for the Mar Y Montana, fresh prawns and stuffed chicken pieces on a sofregit sauce, typical of the Catalan region. Although the portions were generous the whole ensemble was a bit dull.

But my partner's fish and seafood, brimming with mussels, scallops, crab, fish in a rich piquant tomato sauce - with yet more garlic bread - was superb.

Desserts were the flan de naranja (custard with caramel topping and a hint of orange) and deep-crusted apple pie.

All in all the food was extremely good value for money. The Spanish Wok has been described as one of the best European restaurants in its price range in the territory. We would have no argument with that.

And the wine? The list is small but well-balanced and the choice was easy: Rioja, of course.