Those who are fans of British restaurants need no introduction to Theo Randall. He’s been hailed as the unsung hero behind the success of The River Café in London, a restaurant that won its Michelin star under his watchful eye as head chef. In 2007, he opened up his eponymous restaurant at the InterContinental London Park Lane, and he’s now taken over the revamp of Theo Mistral at InterContiental Grand Stanford in TST.
Chef Randall has ushered in his rustic Italian style with house-made pastas and killer desserts, promising a restaurant that reflects the quality of his previous establishments but, thankfully for us, at a discount from what it would cost you in the UK.
At our hosted dinner, we were treated to a delectable antipasti selection ($328) of creamy burrata, prosciutto ham and other tasty entrées. This was all a great start, but we were there for the pasta that acclaimed food critic Jay Rayner has described as “the ideal mix of silkiness and bite” – and we weren't disappointed.
The ravioli d’erbette ($188) was a refreshing medley of Swiss chard, rocket and turnip tops encased in silky pasta. Usually, a butter and sage sauce leans towards a richer flavour, but this ravioli conjured up images of spring in taste but was definitely hearty enough to leave us feeling satisfied.
Next, we tried the cappelletti di vitello ($228), which was similar to tortellini stuffed with slow-cooked veal and pancetta, simmered in a porcini mushroom sauce. This was one punchy pasta. The way this one was wrapped also allowed us to enjoy the pasta itself, where we got an al dente bite in the thicker folds of pasta. A true nod to the what Jay Rayner described in his review.
One of the most popular desserts at The River Café is the chocolate nemesis, so we were excited to see what the torta morbida al cioccolato ($98) would bring to the table. We weren’t looking for a replica but rather a creative rendition of the world-famous cake, and that’s exactly what we got. Made with mascarpone, vanilla and a sweet Italian wine called Marsala, the smooth chocolate cake with its hint of alcoholic aromas was the perfect way to end the meal.
Chef Randall has brought a lot of his personality and lore to the InterContinental Grand Stanford, that’s for sure, but the convivial atmosphere of the old Mistral remains. We can imagine spending an afternoon here with good food and company anytime we’re in the TST East area.
Basement Two, InterContinental Grand Stanford Hong Kong, 70 Mody Road, TST East, 2731 2870, firstname.lastname@example.org
This write-up is based on a complimentary media tasting provided in exchange for an honest review and no monetary compensation. The opinions expressed here represent the author’s.
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