G/F, 14 Fuk Sau Lane
Sai Ying Pun
Tel: 3702 1237
Grub: Subcontinental fusion cuisine. Think subtle spices and okra instead of cheese naans and face-burning vindaloo.
Vibe: Elegant but relaxed. A tiny boutique restaurant on Sai Ying Pun’s cool Fuk Sau Lane. Competition is hot, with menu-of-the-moment venues Locofama and Kaum just steps away, but BlackSalt sails through with confidence and unpretentiousness.
Who to take: A date, a foodie, a close chum … anyone who likes food with a dash of fiery flavour and creative flair. No big groups – the largest table seats six.
What’s hot: All the waitresses were warm and attentive, and made us feel at home straight away. As well as a large range of tea, BlackSalt also does a “lassi of the day” and a nutty cashew milk. Both were light, clean and non-sticky unlike so many milkshakes. As for the food: the menu has a range of “shortplates” to combine and share, as well as three griddle specials,
The hearty “bloomin’ gobi musallam” was a wondrous pairing of griddled cauliflower “drumsticks” with a rich, slightly spicy almond gravy, light-as-air rice flour tortillas and a crunchy, mint-embellished tomato pickle. The kind of dish that makes you stop every few bites and murmur “so good!” through a mouthful of yum.
The “black Angus skirt steak” was on the pricey side, but didn’t disappoint with a perfectly-cooked, juicy rib undercut served with a spicy Bengali brisket and peppery curry sauce. After two generous plates of diverse textures and colours, and addictive tastes, we waddled home completely full.
There wasn’t any room for dessert – but it’s safe to say we’ll be back for the cardamom-infused carrot cheesecake ... and the super-duper service.
What’s not: The okra fries were one of the most intriguing items on the menu, but were disappointingly lacking in flavour compared to the spice bonanza throughout the rest of the meal. The kitchen forgot to serve them with the gobi musallam, but the fries were brought out within moments of the issue being raised with a waitress. The almond “gravy” sauce was on the salty side, too.
Cost: Drinks are from HK$28, shortplates are $HK68 to HK$188, griddle specials start at HK$148, sides are HK$38 to HK$58, and desserts are HK$68.