|Taste ||Environment ||Service ||Hygiene |
Value for Money
Private kitchen concept with Cajun and Creole! Dec 23, 2012
Magnolia split into 2 floors with the open kitchen at the bottom floor where the reception and entrance is. 2nd floor has plenty different sizes of dining room, with brick red wall, a high ceiling and chandeliers casting a somewhat murky light. There was no wine list but free corkage, and the dinner was a set menu for all diners at HK$500 each.
Food rating: 4/10*
* Food Rating: 6/10 is equivalent to 1 Michelin star, 8/10 to two Michelin stars, and 9/10 or 10/10 to three Michelin stars
Black bean soup (3/10)
The soup was thick, perfectly separated from its greasiness. The black beans were fully cooked and blended well with all the species and the chillies gave some heat to the dish.
Crab was deep-fried nicely, crispy yet juicy. The texture of soft cell crab maintained, though if wasn’t serve hot enough.
The ribs was very good, entirely avoiding the chewiness, it was very moist and tender. The meat melted inside your mouth with the spices blended within.
The pumpkin was made into pure with plenty of think cream, seasoned fairly with a hint of sweetness. The fried rice was sticky and full with authentic spices.
Give me a thumbs up if you like it!
Table Wait Time: 0 minute(s)
Date of Visit: Dec 15, 2012
Spending per head: Approximately HKD500(Dinner)
Value for Money3
Out of the Ordinary May 21, 2011
so, my birthday celebrations begin. the bunch kindly celebrates with me every year, and i keep them entertained by finding a nice n special space to sit everyone in. this year it is magnolia.
now if you read the other long article about mognolia, it is mentioned that there is nice living room kinda thingy and you are facing a kitchen area. when i first got there, i thought the dinner was an event where we also had to do the cooking. lol.
as appetizers, they served little crab claws, some cheese thingy in spoons and crostini with this cheese dip thing:
now everyone sat in the "living room" until eight sth, and they brought us upstairs to our dining rooms. long tables in private rooms. not exactly cozy, but you do get the privacy. additional point for the very sufficient air-con - usually these rooms would be extremely stuffy.
so the food comes... not sure if they serve similar stuff everytime, but i'll show some of the things we had which were worth mentioning.
There was also this salad with soft shell crab. a tad too salty.
service-wise is ok, just that they have to walk up and down whenever you summons someone. don't expect lightning speed service. price-wise... call it value and efforts for money?
on the whole, a nice night, a nice gathering, a happy group, all well-fed and plump. thanks to all who joined the dinner, special thanks to you who makes a cake every year, special special thanks to you who stopped by hk and made it to my celebration, and super special thanks to my beloved who organized the dinner.
Recommended Dish(es): Corn Muffin,Chees Dip,Ribs
Date of Visit: May 06, 2011
Spending per head: Approximately HKD400(Dinner)
Value for Money3
Ribs cooked in heaven Jan 08, 2011
I had a lovely dinner at Magnolia recently. It was mostly comfort food that your mum would cook at home. Yes, some of the dishes were quite ordinary, like the prawn and crab salad, jambalaya, okra. But the ribs are superb!! They were the most tender and juicy ribs I have ever had. Literally melt in your mouth. I will be back for sure.
I think it is slightly on the expensive side as this was not in the fine dining category and the ingredients were not anything costly.
Recommended Dish(es): Ribs
Value for Money3
Overall a good meal but some misses.. Dec 04, 2009
So I've been craving fried chicken for about 2 months and that's really why I found Magnolia. Reviews were mixed but just the thought of yummy fried chicken with crispy buttermilk batter made me drool. Anyway, so my friends had actually been there before and highly recommended the place so we all went there together.
Environment: When you first get there you're sitting down on the kitchen/living room level. A little cramped (but not bad) since we didn't get the couches and just sitting in our little corner. After a little while you're led up to their dining room level. Each room sits about 20-ish. Comfortable and lights are pretty dim.
Service: Overall I thought service was great. Unlike other private kitchens food came out quickly (no long lags in between courses) and all food were served at proper temperatures. When they were a little short on the fried chicken (I didn't get a piece) they immediately went downstairs and got me 3 pieces. Staff was friendly and kind of gave it a homey touch.
Now onto the food:
Cheese with Crostini Bread - At first I thought their cheese looked liked tiramisu and I was like "wtf...dessert first?" but quickly realized it was cheese. I'm not a big cheese guy but this was so good! Cheese was strong flavored but not overly strong and the crostini provided a nice crunchy contrast to the smooth cheese.
Crab Claws with Honey Mustard-Horseradish Dip - Taste wise this was ok. The claws were a little small and the meat did stick to the 'bones' so it wasn't that easy to eat. The funny thing was the servers wait there until you finish so you can throw the claw into their little bowl. Since I was having a tough time eating mine it definitely put a little pressure on me to finish it quickly...haha. Would have been better if they just left the dish there.
Mini Pizza: Tasty but nothing particularly special. The pizza crust was pretty thin and felt a little like a mini pancake. Personally if there was a little crunch I think it would be have been better. Not bad overall.
Dinner (served communal style so everyone passes around the dishes)
Seafood Gumbo - Personally a great start to the meal. Gumbo was flavorful and rich. Also there were generous (by HK standards) chunks of crab/shrimp/sausage meat. I want more of this!
Cesar Salad with Soft Shell Crab - Good twist to the traditional cesar salad. The soft shell crab was encrusted and baked with a cajun spice. The slight heat from the spices was a nice contrast to the creamy dressing and cool salad. Another good dish.
Okra with Corn and Tomatoes (side dish) - Not bad. Tasted ok (maybe a tad on the salty side) but at least the okra was still somewhat crunchy (sometimes dishes like this the okra can be kind of mushy).
Sweet Potato Mash (side dish) - I really liked this. The hint of sweetness really to me makes this better than regular mashed potatoes. This doesn't need gravy at all. Also a big plus for me was how silky smooth and creamy this felt in my mouth. Nice!
Fried Chicken - The dish I had been dreaming about for 2 months! Sadly it was pretty decent but not great. Batter was crispy and chicken was pretty moist but to me it wasn't particularly flavorful. Another plus would have been if they used larger pieces of chicken since I felt there was an overall deficit in amount of chicken served.
BBQ Ribs - Now, this took my disappointment away! To me this dish is a star. The meat is 'almost' cooked to a point where the meat is falling off the bone. Really nice smoky flavor and the BBQ sauce it was covered in provided a nice tang. I stuffed myself and ate 3 ribs...haha.
Mustard Greens (side dish) - This is a miss in my book. I'm generally a fan of collard greens and variations of it but this didn't really work for me. Also they seemed very heavy handed on the salt for this dish.
Shrimp Étouffée (side dish) - Decent. Again, I felt it was heavy handed on the salt. There was a generous amount of shrimp in this dish.
Jambalaya (side dish) - I guess ok but clearly this was not made properly. It felt like Cajun fried rice to me. To me there should be more liquids in this dish and it shouldn't have been this dry like fried rice. Taste wise...it was ok.
Corn Muffin with Honey Butter (side dish) - Really nice. I'm used to eating this not in the 'muffin' variation but it works. Tasty when eaten hot and also with some of that honey butter on top. I could eat a whole basketful of these...haha.
Pecan Pie - WOW! I LOVE THIS! The piece of pie was warm and moist with just the right sweet crunch coming from the caramelized pecans on top. I ate a few mouthfuls combining the scoop of cold cream with the warm pie...so delicious. When you eat all the way to the crust...it also tastes great. The only minor gripe...the slice of pie was too small! Haha. Seriously, they should just serve us less of those sides and more of this awesome pie!
Overall I left Magnolia feeling like was pregnant (I ate way too much)...haha. The food in general was good but it's just such a shame most of the side dishes were misses for me. Although the fried chicken was little disappointing (maybe my expectations were too high) the BBQ ribs and pecan pie will draw me back here.
A side note: The place is BYO so I bought 2 bottles of wine. We also tipped $50 each at the end of the night.
Recommended Dish(es): BBQ Ribs, Pecan Pie, Sweet Potato Mash, Corn Muffins and Seafood Gumbo
Date of Visit: Dec 03, 2009
Spending per head: Approximately HKD500
Value for Money3