35 Cameron Rd, TST
Visited 7th November 2009
For me Friday night is TST night. After work drinks offer are a chance to catch-up with mates and explore a corner of Hong Kong I don’t visit to often. From our usual happy hour beer at Fatt’s Palce we wondered down Cameron Road to give Al Bistro a go. Fronted by an open bar area, the restaurant is comfortable, though a tad dark.
The food is styled as 'Mediterranean' with the emphasis on fresh seafood. As we sat down we were given some homemade looking bread with butter and pâté; a nice touch. I was tempted by the fishy theme and ordered sea bream, while my girlfriend went for roast duck breast. My crumbed fish fillet was pan-fried and pretty tasty; moist inside it was well cooked, however the dish was let down by the sauce. Served on top of grapefruit and orange slices the citrus flavours were overbearing and made the dish way too acidic. Joey's duck was again well cooked and served with a sweet cherry sauce and rocket salad. Again the sauce was a bit too much; this time over the top sweet. My friends enjoyed their scallops and walnut and mushroom salad, though they weren’t as impressed by the grilled chicken caesar. The others all ordered desserts and the little samples of chocolate soufflé, chocolate pudding and a trio of strawberry things were all surprisingly good. When we arrived we were told it was happy hour all night and we drink a mix of bevies including average house sparkling, wine and bellinis; not particularly high quality, but satisfactory at the price.
I had a fun night at Al Bistro and though the food was let down by ungainly sauces the quality of ingredients and craftsmanship definitely hints at excellent potential. I thought the service was good, particularly from the bartender who had a fine sense of humour. Value wise it was OK; my fish was $178, the duck breast $168, the desserts a very reasonable $52 and the drinks at happy hour prices ranged from $40 to $50. I’d like to visit Al Bistro again in six months or so to see how things are fairing.
Visit restaurant website.