My wonderful hubby hit the big 3-zero yesterday, and because he doesn’t make a big deal out of birthdays in general, it was a very low-key affair. (Not me. When I turn thirty you can bet that I won’t go down without a party or three! Good thing I’ve got a few years to plan.)
When people were asking how he was going to spend his birthday, the man simply replied, “Having dinner with my wife at her favourite restaurant.” That’s only because he doesn’t have a favourite restaurant, so no harm in going to one of mine.
That being said, SML was my absolute favourite restaurant in Hong Kong when I first moved here, with their amazing food and the option to order your dish in a small, medium, or large size (hence the name). Now that the menu has undergone a drastic makeover, it’s lost its top spot in my books. In fact, I’d say that it was more of a makeunder, with far fewer options and several of my favourite dishes no longer available. Disappointing!
Still, it’s not all that bad. Cue the pictures!
Salmon carpaccio with a caper and sun-dried tomato dressing, rocket, and toast. This was one of the dishes that did not come in three sizes, which is a shame, because I’d have ordered the large version.
SML Caesar salad with bacon, half a soft-boiled egg, and more of that toast which I love so much. As a starter, the medium size was perfect for two.
Crispy fried squid with smashed paprika salt and basil mayonnaise, also in a medium size. This is a dish I’ll order at SML every time. I’m glad they didn’t take this off the menu, although they’ve definitely tweaked the recipe. Also, the calamari used to be served with garlic mayonnaise. Basil is nice and all, but it just isn’t awesome the way garlic is!
For our main course, we had the lobster risotto to share. I had such high hopes for this dish, but alas, the lobster was overcooked, and the crustacean-loving birthday boy wasn’t impressed. The risotto was lovely though, with the sweetest, juiciest cherry tomatoes in every other bite.
I usually look forward to the sweet stuff at SML, but the dessert menu has been whittled down to handful of options which aren’t particularly enticing. No… Please bring back the apple crumble and mango pavlova! *sniff* On the bright side, they still have various flavours of ice-cream available, so maybe we’ll have those next time.
The bill came up to HKD574 (~S$100), which was pretty pricey, but we had a HKD500 cash voucher from Groupon (and we wouldn’t have ordered the lobster otherwise). Even then, this is strictly special occasion type of dining. We’re not rich folk who dine like this all the time. Most nights, it’s simple home cooked meals which cost HKD60 (~S$10) or under for two people.
So tonight, it’s back to cooking for two. And to Edwin, happy birthday! You’re officially a grumpy old man. Bah!
Shop 1105, 11/F, Times Square
Causeway Bay, Hong Kong
Tel: 2577 3444