Monday, June 16, 2014

Armani Prive – Salt Pairing Dinner

  The 3 Course Salt pairing experience starts from $698 at Armani Prive.  The 6 Course Menu for dinner is $1288,  it’s a bit more pricy but it is definitely ok fun and engaging but it is pushing into Michelin starred territory for comfort for myself.     I was Invited over to experience this salt-journey experience,  it was thoughtful enough as a food concept,  but somehow I wished it was cheaper affordable as the concept was sound,  but the pricing point can be a little alienating...


A Really lovely area -
With thoughtful and almost Asiatic design.




Salt-based Cocktails to start off with -
The Grapefruit based cocktail was better than the Blue Margarita for me.    But both are tuned well.




Bread Rolls and a slightly Smoky Salted Butter -
The breads were infused with herbs and most people loved them.   It’s softish in general so I am probably biased,  as I love the textures but it’s a bit Hong Kongers preference I believe..  ~  8/10




A Variety of Salt Rocks -
Some of these are really rare.   Including a Sahara Dessert salt which cannot be found anywhere else in the world,  as it is not Lake or Sea based.    This was already here since the Atlantis period!


Botan Ebi Prawns served on Pink Himalayan Salt slab -
With Italian Amalfi Lemon mayonnaise,  Clementine orange granite,  and dusting of Licorice yellow Cypriot Saffron salt…   The prawns were slightly cured by the salt slab itself,  and were quite salty.   The combination of prawns with the exotic salt mix and the citrusy sauces was refreshing.   I still think the prawns were more saltier than I expected but it was a good concept in theory.   ~  7/10


Pan fried French Duck Foie Gras and Home Cured Duck Ham with Viking Java Pepper Mixed Salt,  Cider and Sherry vinegar Caramelised Green Apple,  Truffle molecular caviars and Rosemary Caviars -
I really liked this recipe.   The long Java Peppers lent it a distinct fragrant and slightly spicy note.   The salt-cured duck ham was done in-house here using well Salt,  the theme tonight.  It reminds me of the ones available at Madam 68 and La Cabane de Vin Bistro,  although tonight’s version was caramelized and with that peppery note.   The truffle caviars were strong in taste and so were the rosemary molecular caviars.  I think this tasted so good but if only the French Foie Gras can be cooked to a pinker state,  as it was non-galvaged and quite meaty itslef.   Otherwise this would be faultless.   ~  7/10


Duck Foie Gras slightly Over-cooked -
It is meant to be less greasy and not galvage fed,  the colour deliberately more yellow to indicate it’s freshness.   



Italian Wine -
From Puglia




Sicilian Red Prawn risotto,  Maltese scampi,  Malossol Caviar,  served with Persian Blue Salt grated on the table -
Whilst I liked this,  I think it could have more red prawn taste on top of the Saffron influence.   On the other hand I really liked the raw Maltese scampi sashimi on top and also the caviar freshness taste.   The Persian Blue salt brought out more a sweetness umami in the end.   I think the base risotto was quite cheesy though for a seafood rice. ~ 7/10 


California Black Angus Tagliata -
Served with warm Rocket jelly,  Saharan Hoarfrost Salt,  24 months Parmesan Chips  and Vintage Balsamic Reduction sauce.    The Hoarfrost salt flakes really brought out the flavour potential,  but unfortunately the beef base itself was a bit too cold when served as it is cooked to only 48C but the plate wasn’t warm enough,  and it also didn’t carry enough beefiness to me.   It was a bit too chewy and lacking character in taste for most of us,  the only fail dish for today!   I must allow myself to speak freely and to judge freely sorry to say,  this is after all  my space,  I say what I really feel as long as it is fair enough.   I didn’t like this beef much but I liked the salt pairing though and the parmesan crust.   And why is the Tagliata not sliced up already or served with arugula leaves?    ~  5/10  




Black & Blue – $118
Criollo Dark Chocolate from Venezuela,  South Equatorial pepper mixed berries,  smoky Havana and Vanilla foam with Blue Persian salt.   This was really good as a package.   The cigar like foam was really potent strong by itself,  but the overall combination somehow worked.  But that piece of Dark Chocolate ganache cake was miniscule by any measure…    ~  8/10




Armani Prive upstairs -
A place I patron often enough enough.   The Food downstairs tonight was fun and engaging enough,  it was Salt-based and Italian in spirit,  some dishes tasted great whereas some dishes were more on the ok side only.   At this price range,   I think the quality can really go up a notch but guess what?      I think they have a lot of potential locked in within here.   But I am glad I didn’t pay the bill in the end,  it was a bit too high for me to swallow easily especially when there are so many options in HK!  ; )





Price:  $698 to $1288  Per Person
Food:  ♕♕♕♕ 1/2

Address: 中環干諾道中8 號置地遮打大廈2樓
2F Landmark Charter Centre,  8th Connaught Road,  Central,  Hong Kong
Ph:  3583 2828

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