Hong Kong really has become foodie heaven with a truly dizzying array of restaurants in a relatively small area. I find the combination of street food, Asian influences and the vast wealth that brings some of the world’s top chefs and restaurant brands works together to create a Disneyland of the palate.
Blue Butcher is a newer spot in Hong Kong’s Central area, right in the heart of the area’s nightlife district. The location is not far from the epicenter of nightlife that is Lan Kwai Fong and I had a chance to visit for a tasting dinner during my recent Hong Kong adventure.
It’s all about the meat
Blue Butcher’s main feature and the focus of the restaurant, is their walk-in dry aging room, where some of the world’s best cuts of beef spend a few weeks hanging around getting even more tender. The room is lined with Himalayan pink salt bricks, to enhance the aging process. Does this all work? Yes, it does, as they combine those aging techniques with beef from Mayura Farm and Mann River, two of the world’s top Wagyu producers.
And while it is all about the meat, everything else has a great freshness to it as well, due to the sourcing of produce and other things from local organic farms. It all combines to offer a great farm-to-table experience, which can be hard to find in Hong Kong.
Dinner at Blue Butcher
I liked Blue Butcher as soon as I walked in. You just know you’re in for a great experience, it has that kind of feel as they are all about the meat. Yes, there are some other options for those with more limited diets, but any restaurant that has butcher as part of its name sure better offer some great meat. Blue Butcher delivers. The decor is kind of old school, New York speakeasy, with rich, dark colors and a very upscale, luxurious vibe.
There is a large selection of small plates to share, great combinations like a pig’s head terrine, with pickled onions and a herb salad served with toast. The quail with smoked grapes and pomegranate seed was a stand-out, as was the bone marrow and toast with caper berries, parsley and salt flakes.The prime steak tartar, with a smoked mustard aioli, shaved horseradish with crispy sourdough was also classic and delicious. This is where I think Blue Butcher’s chef Danny Chaney shines. The beef cuts are already amazing and yes, they cook them to perfection, but I was especially impressed with the wonderful flavor combinations and the mixing of old and new he does in those appetizers and sharing plates.
Chef Chaney’s talent also shows through with the mains, larger plates which include an Australian salt bush lamb rack, a slow-cooked rare breed Kurobota pork chop and a prime US tenderloin steak. Even larger sharing plates include a free-range French chicken, served charred in a pan and my favorite, pig belly and cheek from that rare breed Kurobuta pig with lentils and a Granny Smith apple slaw. There’s a Dutch veal cheek and sweetbreads and sea bass as well. The “Butcher’s Cuts” are the main attraction, including a limited French Denaux farm roasted, slow-cooked lamb shoulder (only three per night) and various Wagyu cuts from Mann River and Mayura Farm. An Australian black angus 14 oz ribeye from O’Connor farm completes the list. A Canadian bone-in short rib and a whole slow-cooked Mann River ribeye are available by special, advance order.
I was lucky enough to attend a tasting dinner and got a chance to try the Chef’s special fried chicken, made to his mother’s recipe. It was amazing, served alongside delicious and juicy watermelon chunks pickled with chili and I hope they add it to the regular menu.
Lunch and brunch
An amazing lunch menu is served Monday through Friday from noon to 3 p.m., the Wagyu beef burger is an excellent choice. Blue Butcher is in the heart of Central’s business area and a great lunch option for all those who work nearby.
In what is becoming a crowded Sunday brunch scene in foodie Hong Kong, Blue Butcher also separates itself from the pack with their “Butcher’s Brunch”, which is as meat-filled as you would expect. Not only is there a full starter buffet with typical breakfast options (great Belgian waffles), you also get foie gras cooking stations and specially prepared dishes with their amazing in-house, dry-aged, bone-in roasted rib eye. A delectable free-flowing Prosecco option is available and true foodie ballers can even upgrade to the free-flowing Veuve Clicquot option.
Blue Butcher is at 108 Hollywood Road in Central, Hong Kong. Dinner service starts at 6 p.m. and the last order is taken at 11 p.m. on weeknights, 11:30 p.m. on weekends. They have a great bar scene and dare I say, the bartenders are as good with drinks as the kitchen staff is with food. Great speakeasy-style, handcrafted drinks from knowledgeable mixologists. Also have to compliment the selection of American wines from small vineyards, a rare find in Hong Kong.
This article originally appeared on Yahoo! HERE.
Freddy Sherman is a world traveler and editor of the travel blog luxuryfred.com. In the past year, he has visited Turkey, Hong Kong, Vietnam, Cambodia, Canada, and Peru. You can follow him onTwitter –@luxuryfred and on Instagram – @luxuryfred.