Restaurant review: Urban Park in TST, Hong Kong
New “Secret Garden Feast” menu
One of the things guests love about Urban Park’s TST location is the large grassy outdoor area. Its location is on busy Granville Road, so it feels like a spacious escape above the bustling city. The restaurant has a number of garden themed promotions, such as picnics that are held in the outdoor area. Recently, we had the opportunity to try out their new “Secret Garden Feast” ($498 per person, minimum of two people) though we sat indoors as we’d gone for dinner and the outdoor area full of shisha lovers.
The “Secret Garden Feast” menu was put together by Justin C., a consultant chef that has worked with Urban Park for awhile. Most things on Urban Park’s menu are twists on comfort food classics such as beer can chicken and lobster tail pasta. Despite being a casual dining restaurant, they want to push the envelope a bit and introduce guests to new and unique flavours too.
What can diners expect from the “Secret Garden Feast”?
We started with the Dinosaur Egg Ceviche. The egg itself was a stunning shade cat eye-like type of blue dyed using the butterfly pea blossom. This was a cool looking dish; we’d definitely never had an egg like this before. However, there was a bit too much going on in terms of flavour. The base of the dish had shrimp, crab and passion fruit but the combination was confusing as it seemed like we were biting into crustacean shells rather than passion fruit seeds. Since the base was tangy, we didn’t think the pink sauce, which had a lemon sauce base, was necessary. However, the squid ink chips were delicious especially when used to scoop up the soft boiled yolk.
This pasta dish was served with five “paint” colours, with each paint representing a different sauce. On its own, the pasta was tasty. The noodles were perfectly al dente, and each strand was fragrant with pork fat thanks to the generous amount of Canadian bacon and chorizo used. This meant the sauces were a light accompaniment. Some of the sauces were more strongly flavoured than the others, but we liked the sweet yellow one (pumpkin and curry) the most.
Black cod is one of our favorite fish, so we were excited to see how it would be served. The cod itself was served as a thin layer wrapped around a minced crab and quinoa mixture and topped with cheese. One the side, the crab and quinoa were rolled into balls and deep fried, and served with chicken consomme capsules. We loved the comfort food feel and flavours of this dish, and hope it gets added to the main menu.
We didn’t love the ribeye steak as much, and would have preferred a smaller, but higher quality piece of meat.
What’s more relaxing than a lavender bath and french toast? This seemed like a higher end version of food served at restaurants like Modern Toilet. Overall it was fun to eat, with the cake-like “french toast” accompanied by honeycomb, ice cream, and coconut spheres.
when we thought our meal was over, there was one more surprise in store. First we were given a miracle fruit each. After rolling it around in your mouth for four minutes, sour things taste sweet. While skeptical at first, we can happily report that it actually works. Raw lemon tastes like lemonade.
We commend Urban Park for experimenting and trying to do something new in Hong Kong’s crowded dining scene. For this menu, we felt there were some hits and misses. Some might think there’s too much going on, but it could be a fun date idea for a pair of experimental foodies.
4/F 20-22, Granville Rd, Tsim Sha Tsui, 2751 1999
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