Saturday, February 07, 2009
This is Government House, the official residence of Donald Tsang, the Chief Executive of Hong Kong. (Wow, aren't we sounding a little like a corporation?) I didn't go there to eat; I took this photo from Club Lusitano, the Portuguese club in Hong Kong. My Uncle Tony (Shirley's husband) is of Portuguese and Chinese descent (both his parents are too, so I can't say what percentage), so he has a membership there that my aunt can use too. They only serve lunch on weekdays, so my aunt made me take a day off work (Rebel!!!) just to join her in their quiet dining room that overlooks Central, Hong Kong's bustling financial district.
It was worth it.
The food looked and tasted as good as the view. Each day features a different lunch set, but you can also order à la carte. Because the club membership is so exclusive (because really, how many Portuguese people are there in Hong Kong?), the kitchen is small and the food is reminiscent of home cooking (though of the upscale kind). Some members of the club lunch there every day and the President came by every table to say hi before sitting down to his own lunch.
Monday's menu consisted of salad, lamb stew, and apple tart. The salad was a colourful assortment of peppers and tomatoes dressed with a light vinaigrette in a shell made out of a spring roll wrapper.
I enjoyed the fact that the salad was iceberg-free, and of course, I have a weakness for any chip-like food.
The lamb stew was really starchy, making it very filling, especially since it was served with a plate of rice and cooked cabbage. I didn't take a photo of the latter because who wants to look at that? The lamb was very tender, but I felt that the stew was missing a certain punch. Perhaps I've had too many Irish-pub renditions of lamb stew.
Though I had to force myself to finish the stew, I still had room for dessert. The apple tart was beautiful, but the crust separated from the filling and no matter how hard I tried I couldn't separate it into bite-sized pieces with my fork. It was really interesting though; different from apple pie in that it tasted like there were ground almonds in it. And of course, who can complain about a lunch that comes with dessert?
Though the meal wasn't perfect, I enjoyed having the opportunity to eat non-Chinese food in such a leisurely environment. Would I go again? Of course - but maybe not on a Monday.
16 Ice House Street
Central, Hong Kong