One hundred and two floors up on the dark side is quite a distance for me to travel for a salad, but I would have no hesitation in returning to the Ritz Carlton, where Peter Find, the Executive Chef of the West Kowloon hotel, last year set up an organic salad bar on weekday lunchtimes.
My fascination for salad bars began at an early age, mainly in North London branches of Pizza Hut where anything smothered in blue cheese dressing and faux bacon bits (were they really derived from the pig?) turned out favourably. However, as I grew older and snobbier, I started to question the quality of some restaurants' ingredients, and having attended 5 years of buffet brunches in Hong Kong, a little boredom may have even crept in at the sight of another caesar salad or tired tricolore. The Ritz Carlton is on a different level, puting most others to shame with their quality, variety and innovation in salad recipe.
We kicked off with a cleansing virgintini, based on fresh lychee and cucumber juice, included in the very reasonable lunch price of $228 per person. There's no photo I am afraid, as we were thirsty... There was a freeflow option too, perhaps not the one I am used to (!) but instead "detox" water, which is effectively filtered water with strips of celery, carrot and cucumber inside
Most of the salad bar's ingredients are sourced from Ecofarm, an organic farm in the Jianxi Province. Having previously purchased vegetables from there, I was aware of the quality and variety available and you can read our Ecofarm review here. This salad bar does an exceptional job of showcasing their diversity in greens including organic purple oakleaf, mustard greens not forgetting the oscar winning kale.
Aside from raw ingredients, there are some simply cooked and pickled vegetables as well as interesting salads:
If you are after something hot, today they offered a vegetable & bean soup, as well as a fragrant Thai vegetable curry. Carnivores and pescatarians are also catered for with a small selection of grilled meat and fish. Reassuring to find also was a small dessert bar, an unusual find in HK, with today the choice of an almond tart or fresh fruit. We therefore left fulfilled but without bursting at the seams, and not before admiring the, albeit slightly polluted, view...