Monday, September 7, 2009

Union J (a Re-Union)

Many would agree that Happy Hour on a Friday evening is a wonderful way to end the week; but I think it is equally wonderful to start the week off doing Happy Hour on a Monday evening. Actually it would be wonderful to end everyday with a Happy Hour session in celebration of the long day of work! My previous visit to Union J was during lunch hour and tonight, with my friend's invitation, it was time for Happy Hour. The layout of the restaurant remains clean and spacious; and with the dimmed lights plus candles, the atmosphere was very cozy indeed. The music was Jazzy and most importantly, the volume of the music was just right as a background music (unlike many lounges and bars nearby which play their music so loud that you would have mistaken the day of the week as Sat!) Thumbs up on the music and its volume control, well done! Great Ambiance!



(1) Litchi & Lychee Champagne
One of the main reasons for coming here was for this drink, which a friend recommended to my friend. It was wonderful! I was not sure about the brand of Champagne being used but it was bubbly enough and not too acidic, likely due to the mixture of lychee juice. From just a single sip, you can taste a strong lychee flavor, but it was not overly strong to a point that would affect the Champagne flavors. Nicely done! In my opinion, the highlight of this drink was the lychee sitting at the bottom of the glass. You have to eat that at the end! Tiny bubbles seem to be exploding on very bite with both residue Champagne and lychee fruit juice watering your mouth. What a great UNION!



(2) Duck Fat Fries
How can we not have snacks along with our drinks !! Before today, I usually categorize fries into 2 distinct types, one is normal thinly sliced fries and the other would be wedges. However, I think I am going to create a new category of my own, big fat fries which lies in between the two. The name of this dish was duck fat fries and it literally means Duck Fat + really Fat fries. In other words, deep-fried with duck fat / oil and sliced fatter than normal. From the pattern of the potato skins and the size of the fries, I think all the pieces came from one single potato. You can actually carefully piece them back into one single piece! The fries were freshly prepared and it came with some steak sauce. I was happy with just the fries which has a crisp and thin layer with soft and mash-y interior. Due to the fact that they are FAT fries, it was hard to compared with those from Press Room or even MacDonald's, but I did enjoyed it and ended up ordering another one later into the evening. Well done! Thumbs up!



(3) Sourdough
To my surprise, the sourdough here was not free of charge. If they dare to charge me for bread even during dinner and lunch, it better be good. Well, it was! It was fresh and still hot so it must be right out from the oven not too long ago. The crust was crisp and firm while the inside was soft and warm. Also, the bread was served with butter and some sea salt. Sometimes it is as simple as butter, salt and bread which would make your day! Thumbs up! If it were free of charge, two thumbs up!



(4) Hamachi, Cucumbers and Wasabi Ice
Now this one was definitely an interesting creation. It consisted of diced hamachi and cucumbers with wasabi flavored shaved ice. The wasabi ice allow you to get the wasabi flavor needed for the fish while giving you a very refreshing sensation. Very interesting concept indeed. However, because it was shaved ice, it melt pretty fast and you have to eat it fairly quick. It was cook to serve it in a glass but with the shaved ice on top, it did not look appealing to me. Maybe placing the ice at the bottom would look better?



(5) Cherry Crumbles
I had my fair share of apple crumbles but it was my first attempt at cherry crumbles this evening. To my surprise it was alright. The cherry filling was not too sweet and the crust was crisp. The crumbles on top was flaky enough but a bit too sweet especially with the icing sparkled over the top.



(6) Banana Split
When I ordered it, I had an image of how the dish was going to look with two bananas on the side and a few scoops of ice cream in between. That is how a classic Hong Kong style banana split would look like. Of course the way how they prepare here would be different and it certainly surprised me in a delightful way. There were two bananas alright but not just two piece of sliced banana. The surface of the sliced banana was caramelized resulted in a thin and crisp layer on top. The combination was very nice in terms of flavors and textures, especially with the ice cream as well. (P.S. - I was not sure what the thing on top of the ice cream was but it was too chewy and too sweet, not my cup of tea)



Likes:
  • Atmosphere + Music (of the right volume and Jazz as well)
  • Litchi & Lychee Champagne - make sure you eat the litchi !
  • Sourdough - simple and wonderful ...
Dislikes:
  • the shaved wasabi ice melt too fast and somehow diluted the strength of the wasabi as well
  • Cherry Crumbles - crumbles slightly too sweet(too much icing as well in my opinion)
Avg Spending: HKD 300 - 400 per person

Union J
1/F California Tower,
30-32 D'Aguilar Street, Central
Tel: 2537 2368


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2 comments:

smogsblog said...

Those potato things are what are called "chips" in English (as in "fish & chips" - the most excellent version of which in Hong Kong is the cod & chips (with mushy peas) at The Chippy). You can get chips in many other places in Hong Kong by specifying "fat chips" instead of fries.

Jason said...

@smogsblog: Thanks for the info! Now I want to give it a try soon! very soon!

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