Nightingale Restaurant & Bar, 33 Ship St., Wan Chai, Hong Kong, Hong Kong S.A.R., China
Nearest Train:Wan Chai
Opening Hours:Mon-Sat noon-1am
Price Range:$$ - $$$
Nightingale is located in an old-fashioned, slender shophouse. When we walked in, there was literally no one in the restaurant. It’s cute and cozy enough, with just a handful of tables on the ground floor, a bar in the corner and a small second floor with more tables.
We ordered a selection of the reasonably priced appetizers, pastas and meaty mains. All the dishes arrived at our table promptly—and all were solidly good to boot. The brie with walnuts was subtle; the spinach-ricotta ravioli was properly cooked if a bit cool; and our rack of lamb with roasted potatoes, string beans and cranberries was hearty.
The only misstep was one dessert, the churros, which came with a surprisingly bitter chocolate sauce (the other, a “French toast crème brulee,” was an appropriately delicious merging of those two sweets). After we queried the sauce, the chef immediately stepped out of the kitchen to explain what he had put in (orange peel, a bit of salt) to counter the sweetness of the cinnamon-sugar churros.
Though we may not have loved that dish, we appreciated the gesture. All in all, it was a very satisfying meal at very affordable prices—especially considering the restaurant’s proximity to the fine dines at J-Res and on Star Street. So our question remains: why don’t more people eat here?