In an ever-changing city where most restaurants last five or six years, celebrating a 10 year anniversary means you must be doing something right. Hutong, Aqua Restaurant Groups northern Chinese restaurant just one floor below their flagship restaurant-cum-bar, Aqua, in the sail-shaped One Peking, is a jaw-dropping expansive space with a curved high-ceiling window that overlooks the magnificent Victoria Harbour and Hong Kong Islands glittering skyline beyond. The flash, modern scene is a sharp contrast to the restaurant itself, which attempts to evoke the hutongs of Beijing, narrow streets splitting courtyard residences. The restaurant doesnt shy away from being deliberately gimmicky in its decor with wooden doorways, birdcages and red lanterns, in addition to a wishing tree and a Chinese bicycle-rickshaw at the entrance, but its all part of the wonderful experience. Celebrating their 10 year anniversary, Hutong has launched a series of menus to commemorate this occasion: the 十万 shí wan Gastronomic Journey (HK$100,000 per person) includes a round-trip business class weekend trip to London inclusive of a stay at the new Shangri-la London Hotel at The Shard, a pre-dinner cocktail experience on the red sail Chinese junk Aqua Luna and a dinner banquet for up to six guests at Hutong in Hong Kong and London; the local alternatives comprise the 万 wan menu (HK$10,000 per person) and the 千 qian menu (HK$1,000 per person). Their 千 qian menu, which we tried, is a selection of ten dishes of primarily traditional, heavily flavoured and often spicy Beijing and northern Chinese cuisine given a contemporary twist in presentation. The menu constitutes two signature 10th anniversary dishes (Oscietra caviar and Kung Po foie gras below) combined with classic Hutong favourites including kale stir-fried Sichuan aged sausage in ginger sauce. Tasting highlights included: Left to right: lamb sliced with coriander, red bell-pepper and leek; bamboo clams spiced and steeped in Chinese rose wine; Russian Oscietra caviar laced asparagus An ostentatious starting point in ingredients and flavours, leading the way for much of the evening. Kung Po style foie gras rolled in gold leaf with cashew nuts and chili The dish presents several depths of flavour and texture, with the slight bitterness of the foie gras contrasting with the chili and the comparative sweet nuttiness of the cashew. Taro cake and crispy apple rolls served with home-made ice-cream After a very heavily flavoured meal, the mildness of this dish is very much welcome and a fitting end to a wonderful meal. With strong flavours, well cooked and pleasantly executed and presented food, heres to a few more decades of Hutong! The menu is available in Hong Kong until 10th May 2014. Chinmoy Lad is the CEO and Founder of The Suite Life. If you would like to be a guest blogger on A Luxury Travel Blog in order to raise your profile, please contact us.
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