Like Blue Butcher, another restaurant by Maximal Concepts, it is difficult to get a table in Fish and Meat even months after its opening. With the success of Blue Butcher and the Brickhouse in mind, I surely expected a lot from Fish and Meat. My experience at F&M confirms that this restaurant group is among the best in Hong Kong.
The decor of Fish and Meat followed the simple but cozy industrial style of Blue Butcher – this kind of style is getting more popular in Hong Kong. The biggest difference is probably the semi-open kitchen where the dinners (mostly with camera) can have a glimpse of the cooking process.
To start with, we had roasted bone marrow crostini and sea urchin with lardo bruschetta. Roasted bone marrow was sinfully good. Who could resist the crunchy crostini soaked with some melted bone marrow. The sea urchin was very fresh; its sweetness was brought to another level of complexity by the saltiness of the lardo. It was indeed a lovely combination!
After that, I was nearly filled up by the rosemary hand-ground Dutch veal and pork meatballs. More tomato sauce and melted cheese for the meatballs would make it a remarkable dish.
I then had a rather light and refreshing Pepperoncini cocktail to clean my palate. It contained Ice Fox vodka, Lillet blanc, jalapeño and cucumber. The apricot and cucumber smelled and tasted strong, while the expected spiciness from jalapeño went nearly unnoticed. It was a perfect substitute to the lemonade.
For the main dish, we first had fresh tagliatelle in fontina and pepperoni sauce with chicken skin & truffle emulsion. The tagliatelle was a little soft; the chicken skin was very crispy. A simple truffle cream sauce was good enough for a decent homemade pasta.
The cocktail here was really a trap for women. I finished it amazingly quickly! I had another signature cocktail, Pesto martini. Pesto was my favourite companion of bread and pasta, and it turned out to be great with cocktail. Compared to the previous one, this cocktail tasted stronger and had a distinctly creamy texture and a hint of basil aroma. Again, the cocktails of the restaurants under Maximal Concepts did not disappoint.
You can hardly miss fish and meat in a restaurant that is named after them. Of what was offered, the roasted French turbot with carrot puree, brown shrimp, and smoked prawn was my favourite. The turbot was perfectly seared. Its slightly crispy edges and the tender and flaky meat were pretty enjoyable. Even the shrimp was full of the taste of seawater. Fish lovers must not miss this dish.
Another main dish, Peter’s Farm Dutch veal chop 'Milanese' was heavily seasoned on the skin, but it was a bit overcooked, at least to me.
Although I had had a lot of carbo, I could hardly resist the sweet corn polenta. It was very sweet and light. A little less watery would perfect it.
By then, I was pretty satisfied with the whole meal, but the best had yet to come. The country clotted cream whipped mascarpone "cheesecake" with raspberry and shortbread crumble forcefully challenged the idea that cheesecakes are always heavy. The one I had was silky and light.
Dark chocolate fondant with salted caramel and homemade Tahitian vanilla ice cream was quite nice too; would be better if the chocolate was more bitter and richer.
The best was the last to come. The Sicilian lemon tart was definitely worth fighting for. The tangyness and sweetness, and the proportion of the tart base and the lemon curd was perfectly balanced. I would be the first one to join if the pastry chef of F&M offers a baking class.
Like her sister restaurants, F&M offers great food; but it is the fabulous dessert that makes her stand out. There are several dishes that I would like to try, such as the duck egg ravioli and the chocolate pot. I shall arrange with my husband...
Fish & Meat
2/F., 32 Wyndham street, Central Food: wwwwwwww