Address: G/F, 2 The Centrium, 60 Wyndham Street, Central 中環雲咸街60號中央廣場地下2號舖地下
Telephone: 3167 7380
年初我第一次到Socialito吃飯，覺得各款墨西哥菜式味道很不錯，最近餐廳推出全新的夏日菜單，所以我再次來訪試試。夏日菜式的味道較清新易入口，有多款冰凍醒胃的沙律或前菜選擇。各款拉丁美洲風格的菜式味道都帶有點甜，酸和辣，配搭很消暑。另外, 香港今年終於放寬了對美國帶骨牛肉的十年限制, 准許三十個月以下的美國帶骨牛肉入口, Socialito現在也開始供應美國帶骨牛肉。這次對Socialito全部的菜式都很滿意，有時間的話我會再來吃飯!
When I first visited Socialito at the beginning of the year (see my review here), I was immediately impressed by the restaurant’s understated, stylish surroundings as well as the creative and satisfying Mexican cuisine. The recent introduction of a new summer menu has brought me back to this restaurant, and I was once again wowed by all the bold, delicious flavours of the dishes!
The kitchen used a range of light, summery ingredients to create the dishes on the new menu, which make them more palatable under Hong Kong’s unbearable summer heat. Expanding from the Mexican region, the preparation of the new dishes draw in techniques and ingredients from other Latin American countries. The portions for the summer dishes are slightly smaller than the winter ones, and there are more light and raw dishes, such as salads and ceviches – they are brilliant to go with a glass of wine or cocktail!
(1) Our feast began with Scallop Tiradito (with Passionfruit Broth, Corn Salsa, Crispy Serrano Ham, Mint), which was a light, delicate dish that was lifted by a fruity, sweet sauce. The smoothness of the scallops was nicely broken up by the crunchy serrano ham.
(2) The Cuban Mojo Ceviche (Hamachi with Garlic Chimichurri, Spiced Plantains, Frisee) was delightful, with the startlingly fresh taste of the hamachi accentuated by the clean-tasting garlic chimichurri.
(3) The Panamanian Tuna Tostaditas (with Coconut Sauce, Avocado Puree, Grilled Orange Fennel Salsa) were deliciously comforting, and the contrast between the velvety chopped tuna and the thin, crispy tostaditas was terrific.
(4) I loved the smoothness and creaminess of the avocados in this Creamy Avocado Salad (with Picked Tomatillo, Green Onions, Buttermilk Dressing, Toasted Almonds). The tartness of the buttermilk dressing and the herbal taste of the cilantro added vibrance to this salad.
(5) We also tried the Argentine Salad (with Caramel Infused Dressing, Bacon, Chipotle, Goat Cheese, Chimichurri Crisp), served with a piece of Chimichurri Crisp which was thin and fantastically crunchy. The goat cheese was enticingly rich, and the caramel-infused dressing, which was sweet and slightly hot, gave this salad a marvellous kick!
(6) The Brazilian Spiced Pork Loin (with Garlic Sauce, Braised Pork Empanada, Micro Salad) was gorgeously grilled and beautifully tender, and the meaty taste of the pork was magnificent.
(7) The Roasted Monkfish (with Caribbean Coconut Sauce, Crispy Polenta, Spinach, Red Peanut Crunch) was gorgeously crispy on the surface, and the seasoning was spot-on. The crispy polenta confused us for a while as we wondered why it was in a brown colour, but the staff later explained that the colour came from the spices which they cooked the polenta with.
(8) The scallops in the Sea Scallop Fideos (with Spanish Pasta, Poblano Cream, Mussels, Corn, Cilantro) were tenderly cooked and had a melting texture, but the Spanish pasta, which was deep fried instead of boiled, was rather dry and grainy texture; I wished that normal, smooth pasta was used instead, which would have matched the buttery texture of the scallop.
(9) Due to the outbreak of Mad Cow Disease in the USA years ago, Hong Kong imposed a 10-year ban on US bone-in steaks, and the ban was only lifted earlier this year! Many steakhouses have jumped on the US bone-in beef bandwagon, and Socialito is no exception. The USDA Prime Bone-In Ribeye (18oz) with Kumquat Mojo was lip-smackingly good, and the taste of beef, layered between fat, was sublime. The Kumquat mojo was a light, citrus dressing which worked incredibly well in cutting through the fattiness of the beef.
(10) I have a weakness for most forms of carbohydrates, and the Bravas Potatoes (with Chili Tomato Aioli, Spring Onion & Cilantro), which were crispy on the surface and powdery in the middle, completely won me over. The sweet potatoes were cut into little chunks, and the entire portion was gone in minutes!
(11) The Baby Corn Esquites (Grilled Baby Corn with Aioli, Queso Anejo, Lime, Cilantro) had a lovely crunch, and the aioli matched with the corn perfectly.
(12) The Sea Beans with Cauliflower (with Slow Cooked Garlic Sauce) were also tasty, and a strong taste of garlic gave this dish some flair.
(13) Even though we already had enough food to feed a family for a week, our appetite knew no bounds and we decided to order the Dry Aged Strip Loin with Truffled Chimichurri. The strip loin was more fatty than the rib-eye we just had, but it was just as delicious. Even though the steak would have sufficed on its own, the Truffled Chimichurri tasted terrific and was a welcomed addition.
(14) When I thought that the meal could not get any better, it did when we finally got around to eating desserts. The Fig Crepas, fresh figs served with crispy, eggy crêpes, were simply sublime. Figs are very commonly eaten in Mexico and in Latin America, and this light, delicate fruit worked wonders with crêpes, a caramel sauce and some almond crumble. Some house-made Cajeta ice cream, which tasted a bit like salted caramel or dulce de leche ice cream, was served on the side, and it was so ridiculously tasty, sweet and sticky that we were almost fighting over it!
(15) After we finished our meal, we ordered some cocktails. This Walking Dead was a drink with absinthe in it. In order to mask the taste of absinthe, the drink was made very sweet, but the taste was still perceptible. It was definitely not the most delicious drink I have had, but it would surely be very effective in getting you or your friends intoxicated!
(16) I also had a drink called “Aphrodisiac“, which was (despite its crude name) an elegant drink with a remarkable taste of aged tequila.
Conclusion: Socialito really appealed to me the first time I visited, and my second visit turned out to be just as good as my first, if not even better! The menu was innovative and playful, and the Latin America-inspired dishes were full of complex, exotic, fabulous flavours – the meal was a job well done.