From Paris to Hong Kong, Akrame is a low-lit one-Michelin-starred restaurant on the trendy Ship Street in heart of Wanchai, Hong Kong. Opened in 2013, Akrame is the first oversea restaurant of Akrame Benallal of restaurant Akrame in Paris. Shortly within half year since it was opened, Akrame got it first Michelin star. With a setting of art gallery of back-and-white tone, i felt like stepping into a tranquil which was totally different from the busy street i just passed by.
My last meal at Akrame was easily forgettable, since it remains on the Michelin Guide Hong Kong with one star as well as high ranking on the local food guide Openrice, i decided to visit it again and try to love it.
Akrame serves modern French food by serving two tasting menus. A lighter one includes 6 dishes (HK$788) and the full tasting menu of 8 dishes (HK$1088). Wine pairing of eight glasses comes at additional HK$798. Since my lunch ends at 3pm and was not really hungry, both of my partner at i had the 6-course menu.
To start the meal, we were served three savory snacks: black cuttlefish biscuit with smoked eel, on the other side of the dish you can find a sesame biscuit with avocado cream. A cute madeleine filled with parmesan cheese and topped with whole grain mustard was served separately in a bowl on the side.
Bread service includes homemade bread with creamy butter infused by Tonka beans.
First dish was a pretty plate of creamy pea emulsion with a Get 27 cocktail twist, restaurant manager Mohamed topped the brown butter foam for us. The egg yolk seems like normal egg yolk which was not creamy enough, despite some overcooked peas, the overall flavor was light and refreshing.
Followed by a treat from the chef. On top the two tier was deep-fried risotto, which suppose to eat together with the smoked oyster and risotto underneath. The smoked oyster smells fishy but taste meaty and delicious, together with the al dante risotto which works well with each other. Unfortunately the deep-fried risotto was a really bad part, too oily which does’t match with the oceanic flavors. Rather than the tastes, the texture doesn’t work well at all – it was too hard and stick on our teeth. Thanks the chef for this gift but we were so sorry about it.
Next course was stuffed endive with crab, the crab was succulent and juicy but overall not impressive.
Hopefully the two main dishes were comparably more impressive. This beautiful fish of pollock was garnished with beetroot and charcoal sauce, it just looks like a piece of art. I enjoyed the tender and delicious flesh with a gently crispy skin, both sauces work well.
Before serving the main dish, we enjoyed a small ‘shot’ of banana sorbet to clean our palate.
The meat course was a well-prepared pigeon which has a lovely golden crust, the meat was nothing but juicy and flavourful. The pigeon meat itself was a great job, probably the best part of the meal, but the garnishment was sad. Especially the cheap and dying rocket… an imbalanced dish.
Next was desserts. We was quite surprised when a plate of black food arrived, i have no sense what it is inside the charcoal by its smell and appearance, until the manager told us it was grilled pineapple underneath the charcoal sauce. The pineapple was juicy and sweet with a hint of sourness. Charcoal ice cream and meringue were good friends with the pineapple.
Second dessert was strawberry sorbet with watermelon and cocoa mousse, the best part of this dessert was the grilled pancake on the top which taste like one of my favourite childhood snack called ‘Mian Yi Bing 面衣饼’.
I tried to love Akrame Hong Kong since my last meal was not impressive, unfortunately both my partner and i found the food we had this time was some how disappointing. Put aside the complimentary oyster risotto dish which was a disaster, the main dishes were just okay while the appetisers were underwhelming.
The restaurant doesn’t seem too hot as it was not fully seated when we visited on a Saturday night. Regarding to the service, the manager Mohamed was really warm and helpful, while the local stuff was a bit cool in comparison.
In short, i don’t think i will revisiting this place again… Hong Kong is a food heaven and there are tones of nice local food as well as fancy western restaurants around.
Address: Shop B, G/F, 9 Ship Street, Wan Chai, Hong Kong 船街9號地下B鋪
Hours: Mon to Sun 12:00-3:00 pm, 6:00-11:00 pm