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Meander your way around Ap Lei Chau’s warehouses and outlets and you just might stumble across new vegetarian eatery Artichoke [ canteen ] tucked away in the heart of an industrial building. It’s easy to see why the location was chosen – the large space is artfully decorated, from the chic wood tables to the slender cutlery. This décor just screams vogue.
We start with the green pea soup cappuccino. The piping hot soup comes in a tall glass mug, topped with foamy whips of parmiggiano and layered with white truffle oil. It’s a heavy starter, but surprisingly warming and richly textured.
Unfortunately, the mains are not so pleasant. We choose the three-stripe ravioli, a tiny tomato-heavy dish that arrives cold. The other main, purple artichokes stuffed with quinoa, is inoffensive, but we wish there was more of it. The artichokes are the size of ping pong balls and instead of bursting with the delicate saline flavour of the signature vegetable, they’re vinegary and flat.
Artichoke has a long way to go before it can court a full dining room (we’re the only two customers there and the food is still oddly cold) but vast improvements might just make it an Ap Lei Chau hotspot. The decoration, after all, is fabulous. Ysabelle Cheung
Artichoke [canteen] 3/F, Harbour Industrial Ctr, 10 Lee Hing St, Ap Lei Chau, 2580 0293; artichokecanteen.com. Wed-Sun 11am-11pm. Dinner for two: $790.