VOLUME XI  No. 31 W E D N E S D A Y February 18, 2009


Dining and Wining ...
Where To Go ...
Where Not To Go









Name of Restaurant Caviar Kaspia
Address of Restaurant Shops 236-237, Second Floor, Landmark Atrium, Central, Hongkong
Date of Visit Thursday, February 5, 2009  

TARGETs  Rating

    First Impression Excellent Acceptable Poor
    Attentiveness to Customers’ Needs Excellent Acceptable Poor
    Flexibility Excellent Acceptable Poor
    Product Expertise of Serving Staff Excellent Acceptable Poor
    Speed of Service Excellent Acceptable Poor
    Cleanliness of Uniform and Serving Staff Excellent Acceptable Poor
          Lighting Excellent Acceptable Poor
          Music -- None Excellent Acceptable Poor
          General Excellent Acceptable Poor
          Presentation Excellent Acceptable Poor
          Taste Excellent Acceptable Poor
          Quantity Excellent Acceptable Poor
          Choice Extensive Limited Unbalanced
          Cost Reasonable Unreasonable Expensive
          Storage of Wine Good Poor Unknown
          Expertise of Sommelier -- None Excellent Acceptable Poor
Total Cost of Meal    

          Very Expensive

Moderately Expensive       Very Reasonably Priced
Name of Director of Food and Beverage Mr Jeff Ronan
Name of Executive Chef Nil  


Caviar Kaspia is one of the latest additions to the free-standing restaurants of the Hongkong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) of the People’s Republic of China (PRC) amid the ever-growing number of restaurants that have called it a day and have closed down.

It is located in the middle of a shopping mall, namely Landmark, in the heart of the Central Business District of Hongkong Island.

The restaurant is owned by The Bluebell Group which is a group of companies that market a number of things, internationally, from cosmetics to fashion goods to food outlets.

As the name of Caviar Kaspia connotes, it specialises in serving caviar.

TARGET (泰達財經) entered this restaurant on Thursday, February 5, 2009, at about 6:30 p.m. without reserving a table.

The restaurant, if one could call it by that name, seats about 54 guests, but, on the night of this medium’s visit, there were only 2 guests – both being in the employ of TARGET.

To start off the meal, a gin and tonic was ordered at $HK70.

Usually, in restaurants in the HKSAR and elsewhere, especially those that sock it to you, the gin is served in one glass and the tonic in another glass, if not in the original bottle.

Not so in Caviar Kaspia: The gin and the tonic comes in one glass and, like it or lump it, that’s it, folks. 

Looking round at the dining tables, arranged in neat little rows, one could not help but be impressed by this first appearance, but the appearance is merely cosmetic, as became only too evident as the evening progressed.

For TARGET’s dinner, this is that which was ordered: 

Dinner Chatelet
$ 1,525 

Baked New Potato with Caviar

Smoked Fish Platter with Champagne Jelly

Pan Fried Foie Gras with
Roasted Wagyu Beef and Avocado Salad


Cream of Cauliflower Soup with Smoked Sword Fish

Blood Orange and Raspberry Sorbet with Vodka

Spaghetti with Smoked Eel and Spicy Olive Sauce

Spelt Parpadelle Pasta with Iberico Ham
and Sun Dried Tomatoes in a Cream Sauce



From the a la carte menu, TARGET selected: 

Chef’s Recommendation 

Caviar and Crayfish with Green Salad


Roasted Venison Tenderloin with Foie Gras, Potato Gratin and Cranberry Sauce


The Food

In a word, the food was terrible.

TARGET has had worse food than at this restaurant, mind you, but the muck, dished up on Thursday, February 5, 2009, must rank with the growing list of lousy eateries in these 416 square miles.

The first course on the Dinner Chatelet –Baked New Potato with Caviar – was a joke, unrivalled in the annals of any cook’s memoirs of successfully presented fakes.

Here was a new potato, measuring about one inch round, the innards of which had been scooped out and, then, mashed and replaced into the potato skin, on top of which was a dab of something that resembled the black fish eggs of a sturgeon.

However, the cook had surrounded the entire dish with black sea salt so that one could not tell what was the caviar and what was the black sea salt.

When this reviewer had been able to determine the difference between the caviar and the black sea salt – with the assistance of keen eyesight of a waitress – after having ingested a mouthful of black sea salt, it was discovered that the caviar was without any discernable taste, at all.

The second course was edible and comprised 3 kinds of smoked fish.

Probably, because the smoked fish had been imported – or bought at the local supermarket – it was quite a presentable dish and, to be perfectly honest, the presentation had been tastefully done.

The next course – Pan Fried Foie Gras with Roasted Wagyu Beef and Avocado Salad – was, believe it or not, devoid of foie gras, but there was some stewed beef.

It was difficult to remember how it tasted, but TARGET is certain that it tasted of something.

The Cream of Cauliflower Soup was, in fact, Cream of Potato Soup – at least, that is how it tasted.

It was served hot so, because of this fact, it scored about one point out of 10 points, with zero, being the lowest possible score.

The final 2 dishes had a great deal in common: They both tasted very similar.

For what reason would a restaurant serve 2 pasta dishes in a row, TARGET has no idea, and to have 2 pasta dishes that tasted so much alike was another mystery.

As for the a la carte dishes, the first course – Caviar and Crayfish with Green Salad – was quite a challenge because, first, it was difficult to locate any suggestion of caviar, which must have been hiding under a corner of a leaf, and, second, the crayfish measured about one inch in length and about one quarter of an inch in width.

Further, the crayfish had been of the frozen variety – and the restaurant confirmed this as fact.

As one would expect, the crayfish, as with the disappearance of the Pan Fried Foie Gras in the third course of the set menu, was insipid.

As a salad, however, there was nothing wrong with the fresh, edible greenery.

But at $HK225!

It was a rip-off.

The Roasted Venison Tenderloin course was, also, of the frozen variety, the meat of which was, also, insipid. 

Unless one enjoys, munching on tasteless meat, one could not grade this dish or compare it with anything; and, TARGET has, yet, to establish a negative value for cooked dishes.

Having paid $HK2,563 for the above meal for 2 people, one could only state that one felt that the word, ‘Cheat!’ was an apt description.

The Ambiance

Sitting in the middle of a shopping mall, one expects to experience a little more noise than in an enclosed, fine-dining establishment, but, at Caviar Kaspia, one is treated to the yelling and screaming of workers, trying to find their way here and there, and, occasionally, there is that young lady, talking loudly on her cellular telephone, looking desperately for her boyfriend who is lurking somewhere in the large, Landmark complex.

Then, at about 8 p.m., the construction of something in the bowels of Landmark gets underway, making it difficult to tolerate the cacophonous sounds of jackhammers and what-have-you.

There is nothing wrong with the layout of this restaurant, at all, but it is just located in the wrong part of Landmark since it is quite impossible to enjoy a meal amid the constant din, the yelling and the screaming of passers-by and the construction works that seem to take place, nightly.

There is no chef in Caviar Kaspia and the person, doing the cooking is a Chinese gentleman, TARGET was told.

This medium was assured that this cook had spent 6 months in France, learning his trade.

He, really, should return for a refresher course.






While TARGET makes every attempt to ensure accuracy of all data published, 
TARGET cannot be held responsible for any errors and/or omissions.




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