In every city there are always the “must do” and “must see” places. In Hong Kong, one of my “must do” places is Cafe Gray Deluxe at The Upper House hotel on Hong Kong island. Located on the top level of The Upper House, Cafe Gray Deluxe not only provides a breathtaking view over Victoria Harbour but also provides a serenity and peacefulness from the hustle and bustle of life at street level. Whether you’re there to enjoy a casual drink or experience their out of this world afternoon tea, or there for lunch or dinner, you’ll always experience top quality food and drink, paired with stunning views that make you just want to stay and soak it in.
Over the years, I’ve visited several times for drinks and snacks at the bar, dinner with friends and a beautiful afternoon tea, but I’d never been for lunch! So this visit my sister and I decided that after a spot of shopping at Pacific Place mall, conveniently located below The Upper House, we’d have lunch at Cafe Gray Deluxe to enjoy the day time view. We were lucky to have a sunny day in Hong Kong so enjoyed a spectacular view as the water sparkled in the sunlight.
The menu features a delightful mix of Western, Middle Eastern and Asian flavours using seasonal produce from locally grown and organic where possible. The menu has an A La Carte menu and for lunch they offer a great value prix fixe lunch of either two or three courses. Being foodies we are, we settled on the three course prix fixe menu (I mean, it’s really not much extra for dessert and surely there is always space for dessert!) and it meant we could order different dishes to try out the menu
We started with Crispy Pork Belly Salad with Mango, Coriander and Sesame and the Spinach and Feta Pastilla, Ras El Hanout with Cous Cous and grape chutney. The former, a fresh and Asian inspired salad with pork belly roasted to crispy perfection but with soft, juicy flesh. The salad was fresh and crunchy with a subtle asian dressing that was sweet, sour and salty – the elements of a perfect dressing.
The Spinach and Feta Pastilla was equally as delicious with the perfect mix of Spinach and Feta, wrapped in a light pastry were delicate and wonderfully flavoursome. The dish a mix of Spanish and Moroccan inspired flavours. The cous cous soaked up the grape chutney and was a beautiful accompaniment to the light pastries.
Mains were a delightful mix of land and sea. The Pan Seared King Salmon, Teriyaki with Spiced Soba Noodles and Broccoli was an amazing dish with the salmon cooked perfectly so that it was slightly crispy on the outside and the partially warmed flesh that flecked off as you cut into it. The sweetness of the teriyaki sauce was enhanced with the spiciness of the soba noodles. A magnificent main.
The second main we sampled was the Duck Leg Confit Apple Cider with braised Endives and Shallots with Puy Lentils. The confit duck was soft and succulent and the sweetness of the Apple cider sauce was the perfect match. There is always something to be said of having duck with a sweet sauce that makes it a magical dish. The shallots added another layer of sweetness to the dish with the endives balancing it out with a bit of sourness. The Lentils added a lovely texture to the dish. It was rich, decadent and delicious.
I have to say after the first two dishes, I probably started to question my ability to eat dessert. But I guess when you’ve come this far on your gastronomic journey it is wrong to stop. And I’m glad we didn’t because the desserts were just beautiful. Floating Island, Elderflower Anglaise with Cassis and Red currants was a vision of white! The delicate Elderflower anglaise was a floating tower of sweetness on a bed of Cassis and Red currants all topped with a sugary net. It wasn’t too sweet but it was creamy and indulgent.
The Plum Tapioca Pudding with Prune Armagnac ice cream was a bit sweeter so if you’re a sweet tooth then this is your dessert. Plums and prunes go really well together and this was given a bit of a twist with the tapioca pudding. Ice cream was sweet with a hint of armagnac giving it a subtle liquor taste. A beautiful match of different flavours that combine to give a sweet dessert.
The dishes we had were carefully crafted combinations of flavours and textures that worked really well together. It didn’t matter that one dish had Asian influences whilst another had French influences. The balance of the dishes and their flavours is about tantalising your taste buds with fresh ingredients. I left there feeling completely satisfied in the knowledge that this is one of those Must Do places that I will be adding to my list when I come to Hong Kong again.
At the time of writing, the Prix Fixe menu – 2 courses $355 HKD (approx $64AUD) and 3 courses $395 HKD (approx $70 AUD) both with coffee and chunks of chocolate.
Cafe Grey Deluxe at The Upper House – Pacific Place, 88 Queensway, Admiralty, Hong Kong
(Ph) +852 3968 1106