Good food, gorgeous views, delicious cocktails and wine. Cafe Gray Deluxe has managed to get the right mix here.
Located on the 49th floor of The Upper House hotel in Pacific Place in Admiralty, Cafe Gray Deluxe serves chef Gray Kunz's interpretations of classic European cuisine, which is a departure from fine dining and what Kunz refers to as "everyday dining". The ingredients used are sourced locally and are organic when possible. This also means that the menu changes often, every two weeks, to reflect what is market-fresh and available.
Service is friendly and the staff is knowledgeable about what they are serving.
During lunch time, a set menu is served which is HK$325 ($42) for two courses and HK$385 for three.
On the day that we dined there, the simple coeur de boeuf tomato salad with crumbled tomini dressed with purple basil vinaigrette was made with rich red tomato slices that were a feast for the eyes as well the taste buds. A common complaint in Hong Kong is that tomatoes with really good tomato flavor are hard to find. It seems that this is not a problem here.
The pasta fiore is a light pasta dish made with thin layers of fresh pasta and a tomato sauce. This delicate dish is scented with a gentle sprinkling of thyme and rosemary that went well with the tangy tomato-based sauce. There is the option to have this as a starter or a main course (HK$115/HK$175).
For mains, my dining companions both chose fish dishes: steamed garoupa, vegetable minestrone, pesto aioli (main dish option on set menu); and seared Icelandic cod, caper-herb remoulade served with grilled summer greens (HK$375). Commonly found in Cantonese cuisine, the garoupa was cooked using the preferred method of cooking, steaming, but paired with Italian herbs and vegetables. The seared Icelandic cod is a meaty white fish that was well complemented by the slightly tart caper-herb remoulade and vibrant summer greens.
The braised short rib of beef and soft grits, meaux mustard, and horseradish julienne (HK$365) is a signature dish here since Cafe Gray Deluxe opened in 2009. Rich beef flavor is infused into the sauce as the meat is slow-cooked for several hours to achieve the perfect level of tenderness.
For stunning evening views of the harbor, the 14-meter bar is a popular and elegant venue for an after work drink or a night out with friends. The Pineapple and thyme martini made with Ketel One citron vodka, pineapple juice, lemon juice, and garnished with fresh thyme sprigs and the Upper-Southside made with Hendricks gin, lime juice, fresh mint, and garnished with a cucumber slice, are both cool and refreshing cocktails to beat the heat during Hong Kong's hot summer.
Also, for Upper House guests traveling to Hong Kong on Cathay Pacific or Dragonair, the hotel will purchase carbon offsets to help support the development of environmental projects in the Chinese mainland to offset the carbon emissions from their inbound journey.