It seems you can’t walk five meters in the Courtyard Four area these days without stumbling into a new restaurant or bar. We have counted a high-end Italian restaurant, a Belgian beer bar, and a wine bar in an antiques emporium among the openings over the past few months. Now we can add a stylish Cantonese restaurant to the roster.
Rouge Restaurant opened quietly in the space next to Taco Bar and we will admit that we were initially put off after spying only the pricey set packages at the front of the menu. However, a recent visit showed us the error of our ways. Yes, there are expensive dishes here – the seafood section is predictably eye watering – but where Rouge excels is in its faithful renditions of classic Hong Kong-style comfort food dishes. The curried beef brisket in particular will have you scraping the bowl to avoid leaving behind any of the unctuous sauce, although if we were to nitpick, a larger portion of meat would not have gone amiss. All beef-related thoughts are abandoned however when the roast squab (that’s young pigeon to you and me) emerges from the kitchen. Each mahogany-skinned bird (RMB 49) is carved into four sections, the head placed proudly on the edge of the plate – this is not the time to get squeamish. Go with an odd number of guests and we can’t guarantee that a fight won’t break out over the last piece.
Named (in Chinese) after Hong Kong Island’s Shek Tong Tsui District, Rouge provides just as an authentic experience as catching a flight to the Fragrant Harbour itself.
Photos: Joey Guo
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