Serge et Le Phoque (CLOSED)
Time Out says
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Please note, Serge et Le Phoque has relaunched as Yopo, a modern European restaurant with South American influences. Time Out Food editors, May 2019.
I don’t care who Serge is and I think we can get all the ‘what the Phoque’ jokes out of the way. Just know that this is a swish restaurant in an ultra-fashionable new hotel. The door staff were achingly cool, yet refreshingly friendly (this despite my being dressed to unimpress). You walk past a wild, bijou bar to the restaurant, which by comparison is restrained. It’s sleek and luxurious, with charming staff who look like they’ve come straight from a Parisian photoshoot.
This is the London outpost of a hot French restaurant in Hong Kong, so the menu, though broadly modern European, also has plenty of exotic Asian splashes. A boozy rum baba with mango accents was one of the best I’ve had. Another dessert bizarrely yet brilliantly combined a lemon cream with a red pepper jelly. Earlier on, there’d been a terrific plate of charred octopus, with fat, salty pearls of roe, a rich jus and a quarter of a deliciously fungal ‘century egg’. Top marks.
There were wobbles: a too-tart ceviche, an uninspiring piece of monkfish. And prices are steep (£15-ish for starters). But for a special occasion – book drinks in the bar and don’t miss the glam hotel loos either – this sophisticated newbie is a safe bet.
20-21 Newman Street
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