Posted by - 18 May 2010 - No comments

Bo select this

The UK has Heston Blumenthal, Spain Ferran Adria and Hong Kong? Alvin Leung, of course.   The talented chef and owner of one of the first Chinese restaurants to be awarded a Michelin star in the Hong Kong guide, Leung joins a league of celebrated chefs who have been credited with pushing the boundaries of gastronomy with inventive creations designed to appease all the senses, not just taste, with his own style of cooking he calls "Xtreme Chinese".  Leung has been nicknamed the "Demon chef" and the "rock n roll" chef, so it's no wonder Bo Innovation was at the top of our list for our stopover in Hong Kong.

Lap Mei Fan
So, here the AB and I are at Bo Innovation ready to spend half our holiday fund on day two of our trip, and we look at the menu and we gasp not at the astronomical prices but how good value for money the menu is.    Firstly, there's the set lunch menu which offers the choice of either two dim sum dishes or a classic "Bo" dish, starch du jour (rice)  plus dessert for a mere HK$198 (around £17.50) and the a la carte menu with selection of dim sum and classic "Bo" dishes priced at HK$40 (£3.55) a dish - bargain!  It's cheaper than Royal China in London.

24 hours cooked pork lasagne in Chinese vinegar & egg

We survey the menu with a mixture of intrigue and excitement.   On the set menu the palate teasing "24 hrs. cooked pork lasagna in Chinese vinegar, egg"- a dish comprising of layers of finely sliced slow cooked pork served with a quail egg on top, immediately catches the AB's attention.  The meat is tender and  the sauce, tangy and ever so sweet - thank god, for the starch du jour.

Cheung fan sprinkeld with black truffle
I however, have my sights sets on a selection of  the smaller delights on the a la carte. The "lap mei fun" - the traditional Chinese dish clay pot rice normally served with some sort of preserved meat, has been reduced to two ceramic spoons filled with puffed rice infused with a "lap mei" sauce topped with sprinkles of pork floss.  This is one of Bo's signature dishes and it's an interesting interpretation, but the AB is not sure what to make of the dish and neither am I.   The dish is not unpleasant but it's unlike anything I've ever eaten before.

Deep fried scallop balls in kaffir lime sauce
The "black truffle cheung fun" arrive next.  Rolled in one of the world's most expensive ingredients, Leung elevates this traditional Chinese snack to a delicately flavoured dish to savour and enjoy, but I can't help feeling slightly disappointed.   The black truflle flavour is so delicate you have to concentrate, just so your taste buds can register that distinctive taste.

The Thai inspired "deep fried scallop balls, kaffir lime sauce" follow next are deliciously light, like a round fish cake, but it is the next two dishes the "cauliflower risotto, black truffle, duck juice" and "pan fried foie gras, white miso, lettuce wrap" which leave us speechless.

Cauliflower risotto in black truffle and duck juice
 The risotto is tremendously earthy and fresh.  It left us wondering how pureed cauliflower can taste so good, when combined with some of the finest ingredients in the world.  

Pan fried foie gras
The foie gras is given an Asian twist - white miso, sauternes and wine sauce is drizzled over a sizable piece of foie, and served in an iceberg lettuce leaf filled with dried vermicelli, and diced mushrooms and carrots.  It's like a fancy taco, with the combination of fresh ingredients from the East perfectly off setting the rich and buttery liver.  It's ever so indulgent, and easily finished with two mouthfuls.

Comfortably full we did manage to muster room to share a dessert.   I'd tell you about it but we were too busy discussing our main courses, and how much fun we'd  had, and all for under £100.

Verdict:  Don't expect to come here for your take away favourites as you won't find them.  What you will find are dishes which challenge the taste buds and your perceptions of Chinese cooking.  It's not for everyone, but at these prices it's worth a try.

Shop 13, 2/f, J Residence 60 Johnston Road Wan Chai
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