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Cuisine Molecular, Plus Ovaries

I have been eating exceptionally well in Hong Kong. Access to the Hong Kong Club is access to excellent F&B of high quality and I have visited a number of times, not least of which was a dinner in the Jackson Room the other evening that was very jolly.

It seems ages ago - but in reality is but a few days - that I went with a client to Bo Innovation. I haven't been here since they relocated from next to the Foreign Correspondents' Club and it now occupies a much bigger venue just off Johnston Road near The Pawn. They maxed out at two Michelin stars and, with the latest round of rating, were docked to one, so perhaps the talk of the town is true: that they can produce superb food one visit, but let you down the next.

I met a client there who had kindly brought along a couple of bottles of red for me to choose between and such is the hoo-ha surrounding Chateau Lafite at present that I nearly selected the bottle of 1997 that was sitting on the bar. Sense prevailed, however, and I elected its neighbour. Thank goodness I did. To miss out on Aldo Conterno's 2000 Gran Bussia Riserva Barolo would have been a tragedy. It was quite superb.

The food here is proper molecular weirdness, but wow were they were on form the other evening. We sat at the kitchen table and had the tasting menu, a list of 17 or 18 dishes that stalked among my taste buds and provided a gustatory experience so far from the norm as to offer a quite alien, yet profound, oddness.

First up was a dish called Dead Garden. From what looks like a bowl of bare soil emerges withered-looking tiny mushrooms. Break through that earth's crust and beneath was a bright green puree. Stunning to look at, it was perhaps the least successful dish, taste-wise. But from there things became increasingly electric. If you haven't been here, go. The wine list is very good. The food can be inspirational.

A lunch at Nadaman, the Japanese restaurant in the Island Shangri-La, proved delicious and excellent value. The tepenyaki was light and perfectly cooked and presented.

A grand dinner at Amuse Bouche in Wan Chai was very grand indeed. The first time I have eaten a deep fried egg! Wine was excellent and included a very classically claretty bottle of 1998 Branaire Ducru.

Lunch at Cepage was very welcome, as I have been hearing that this is the best eatery in the portfolio of the Singaporean Les Amis group. Starter was stuffed tortelloni with a veal jus and I had line-caught (and brilliantly cooked) snapper as a main. Perfectly kept and ripe cheeses followed and we drank a bottle of 2004 Gigondas Hominis Fides of Chateau Saint Cosme, proving that the coolness of that harvest produced stunningly burgundian, unusually elegant Grenache.

And I have just been out for Saturday lunch to a little Japanese restaurant in Jardine's Bazaar: a place called Ko Shu. Delightfully fresh sushi, yakatori, tempura and, irresistable, Arctic crab ovaries. Misunderstanding, we thought the small bowl of orange goop was a sauce with which to eat the crustaceans' reproductive organs, but said goop turned out to be the organs themselves. Very good too: a touch slimy and wonderfully salty.

So, feeling rather replete again. My last meal having been Japanese, however, I am hopeful that I will be hungry again my suppertime!
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