Set up in Man Mo Cafe as a sort of supper club, Test Kitchen provides a venue, as well as the patrons, to enjoy a series of experimental and expressive dishes in the chef’s true style while giving diners a unique culinary experience. Diners are asked to critique each dish and drink pairing for both creativity and taste and to dine amongst strangers as if they are friends.
The first run of this new concept showed off the skills of New York chef Kwame Onwuachi, as a one-night pop up at Man Mo Café in Sheung Wan. The first round began with a refreshing cucumber caprinhi paired with diced abalone served in the iridescent shell mixed with corn masala for a delicious kick and topped with lily buds for a flowery finish.
Next was the highlight of the meal, a butternut squash soup with parmesan foam, pickled squash and toasted pepitas decoratively poured from Chinese teapots and absolutely worthy of a second helping.
The third course was a succulent serving of pompano, simply done with accompaniments of crispy sunchokes that were a textural and taste delight along with the red shiso and lapsang souchong cream.
A juicy serving of Wagyu was artfully served with a pickled quail egg surrounded by marsala jus and a peppering of Shimeji mushrooms.
Dessert was dubbed a Floating Island and the first taste of thyme meringue, toasted almond anglaise and mangosteens was sheer delight.
All in all chef Kwame demonstrated an appreciation for excellent produce, exotic ingredients and compelling combinations that mesh for unexpected and ambrosial dishes.
We are excited to see the next Test Kitchen evening to discover the new chef, restaurant and panoply of flavours on the horizon.