By: Brooke Chenoweth
While not technically a restaurant, Ophelia is the bar everyone’s been talking about in Hong Kong, and we were looking for any excuse to try it recently. So, with the intention of sampling the bar snacks, we popped in early one Tuesday evening for a bite (ok, and a cocktail too).
Even non-drinkers will be impressed by the ambiance and out-of-this-world interior at Ophelia. It manages to be dark, sexy, flamboyant and exotic while maintaining a surprising level of sophistication and cool – a hard balance to achieve. This is thanks to the design talents of Ashley Sutton, an Australia best known for numerous bars in Bangkok.
While the décor may be ah-mazing, what matters on this page is the food. We hadn’t eaten and really had no idea what to expect food-wise, so we arrived starving. We started with the house-infused olives ($45) – delicious – and followed them up with Parma ham with torched figs, ricotta and balsamic ($150), and braised beetroots with goats’ cheese, walnuts, honey and mint ($98) – both very good, with a nice balance of salty, creamy and sweet. We finished with truffle mushroom arancini with green goddess dressing ($98), my personal favourite of the evening – golden and crisp on the outside and oozing with truffley goodness on the inside. The whole school prawns with chilli and Szechuan salt ($90) were tasty, but a little tricky to eat. All portions were very generous, and with Australian chef Angus Harrison at the helm, the menu is set to expand soon.
The cocktails were also really special. I tried La Demoiselle ($145) – Calvados, champagne, rhubarb and rose cordial, and sandalwood mist; it was deliciously floral and summery, and I could have had more than one. My friend tried The Rime of the Ancient Mariner ($165), which she described as quite strong, but also very nice. We didn’t get the chance to try the famous Cheongasm, which is served inside a birdcage, but it’s definitely on the cards next time!
Must-try Dish: Truffle mushroom arancini
Ophelia | Shop #41A, 1/F, The Avenue, Lee Tung Avenue, 200 Queen’s Road East, Wan Chai | 2520 1117
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