Sunday, 26 January 2014

Le Grand Pokka Cafe

Style over substance

Pokka cafe is a well known restaurant chain in Hong kong and it has been around as long as I can remember it, the food is a mixture of Japanese and French cuisine with some specially sourced coffee from around the world. Le Grand Pokka Cafe is a new concept from Pokka Cafe, with a much upgraded decor and more luxurious items on the menu. We opted for a few set lunches and shared them between us, what really got me puzzled was we were offered some French croissants at the start, but instead of butter or salt, we were given olive oil and balsamic vinegar which was a bit of bizarre choice and I failed to understand the reason behind it.  

Le Grand Pokka Cafe

Butter baby scallop linguine in pesto was perhaps the best dish on the day, the scallop was soft and sweet with the pesto and gave the dish a lovely herbal aroma. The linguine was silky and smooth with the cream which held the whole dish together nicely. On the other hand, the seafood in ink risotto was very weak, the risotto was very soggy and lacked seasoning, the seafood was rather tasteless and as expected it was mass produced frozen seafood quality.
Butter baby scallop linguine
seafood in ink risotto

Pan fried rib eye steak with gravy was pleasant, the steak was done medium and had great balance of texture, the steak itself was good enough on its own with some salt on top so I wasn't much of a fan of the gravy on top. Our choice of dessert was a giant plate of tiramisu diced toast with ice cream, basically it was deep fried bread cubes with tiramisu dressing on top with ice cream on the side. The tiramisu sauce was just far too thick and sweet, the richness was overwhelming and left the ice cream taste of nothing but cold texture.  
pan fried rib eye steak
tiramisu diced toast with ice cream

At the end of the day I found Le Grand Pokka Cafe has committed one of the most obvious mistakes in the restaurant business: style over substance. While the decor was impressive with beautiful glassware and cutlery as well as a great level of service, the food simply does not match the price tag it commanded. Also the choices of the menu was far too big, with Japanese, French as well as Italian and sushi items on the menu, I wonder how fresh the ingredients can be and how much waste it produces on a daily basis.

Food 4.5
Service 7
Ambience 7
Value 4

£20 per head

Shop 5, G/ F & Portion of 1/ F, Fashion Walk, 

9 Kingston Street, Causeway Bay, Hong Kong

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