L'Atelier de Joël Robuchon, Hong Kong
Hong Kong is one of those cities in Asia where a number of Michelin-starred chefs from Europe have opened up branches, so we took advantage of this to hit up L'Atelier de Joël Robuchon tonight (fourth floor of The Landmark, 2166-9000). Most of the seating was counterside where one could watch the chefs working from a distance. Aside from a few dishes that we picked, we more or less put ourselves in the hands of the maitre d', who artfully suggested and assembled a course of small plates for us to try out from start to finish.
It totally blew past my expectations, be it the tiny foie gras ravioli, the crunchy salt crystals in the amuse bouche, or the rich pork on toast topped with truffles. Even the little wad of marzipan that was used to secure a porcelain cup of fries to the plate of steak tartare was playfully impressive. Fresh high-quality ingredients were the key, and the maitre d' was warmly engaging.
I'm not a huge fan of fancy food as it oftentimes becomes too dependent on truffles, and I usually question whether it's worth the high prices. This place changed my mind about that (although that was easy for me to say given that our friend picked up the tab tonight). Michelin gave this place two stars; combine that with Yung Kee, the one-starred Cantonese goose place from this morning, and I guess we had a three Michelin star day today.