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(From BC Magazine Issue 254)
Having worked in Washington DC and Rome for almost two decades, chef Michael Rickman describes himself as ‘insane’ – for a man who mixes curried cauliflower with lobster and crème fraiche, the term seems appropriate. Standing for ‘beautifully organic’, the hip restaurant serves organic ingredients, from the fresh vegetables grown in the New Territories to the tender lamb chops flown in from New Zealand. Our pick would be the starter of grilled scallops in a pomegranate reduction with mushroom quinoa – the sweet-sour pomegranate mixes well with the perfectly grilled scallops for a fine booster to your appetite. For those not after a big lunch, this starter with its mushroom quinoa – the famous grain from South America once known as the ‘gold of the Incas’ – may be all you need. Though you may not be able to resist chef Rickman’s signature dessert, a caramelized apple tower with a ginger vanilla gelato. Rickman prepares the fruit in four ways – as is, dried, spiced and minced – which gives a variety of tastes and textures from this single humble fruit. The set lunch menu is renewed weekly and served from 12nn-3pm. A three-course lunch costs $180 and two-courses $150. Dinner hours are from 6:30-11pm.
(From BC Magazine Issue 253)
It’s easy to walk past the simple entrance half way down Arbuthnot road that offer ingress to the newly opened beo* (16 Arbuthnot Road, 2868 0625) (*beautifully organic). That simplicity offers a hint as to what’s hidden away. The brainchild of French first-time restaurateur Joanna Kalfa, beo* offers a modern and funky two level design with a minimalist white colour scheme which is surprisingly comfortable and intimate. The ground floor features a central “cloud bar’, which serves up a wide range of cocktails, and looks out onto one of the few trees in Central. The 4.3m high basement resembles a cocoon for more relaxed dining. Starters include grilled scallop with pomegranate reduction and mushroom quinoa ($100) or curried cauliflower and slipper lobster soup with savoury vanilla crème fraiche ($85) while the mains include arugula and beet fettuccine with spanner crab ragout ($150) and mustard crusted Alaskan halibut served with warm green onion potato salad and fennel stewed tomatoes ($185). Portion sizes are generous and all the ingredients used, except for a few dairy items, are organic. But don’t think of beo* as your average organic restaurant. It’s not. Instead, beo* strives to be a quality restaurant which uses organic ingredients, and from what we tasted last week it’s off to a good start.