Sugar, Spice and Everything Nice: Soho Spice has gotten a complete makeover. The longtime Elgin Street restaurant, run by Dining Concepts, now has chef Peter Cuong Franklin on board. With that comes a complete overhaul of the menu, the interiors, and vibe. In fact, pretty much the only thing that remains the same is the name and the Southeast Asian focus, with street food-inspired staples from the likes of Vietnam, Thailand and Malaysia.
Look & Feel: Don’t let the slightly confined entrance fool you — inside there’s a roomy dining area complete with an atmospheric alfresco space. Unlike many a SoHo restaurant, this one actually gives you breathing room between tables — no dining elbow-to-elbow here.
Meet the Chef: This isn’t star chef Peter Cuong Franklin’s first rodeo — he once ran a Vietnamese private kitchen in Hong Kong before going on to open Peel Street darling Chôm Chôm and later pho joint Viet Kitchen (sadly now closed).
On the Menu: Alongside comforting Southeast Asian favorites like lemongrass grilled chicken ($198) and Malay crispy spring rolls ($78) you’ll find modern creations like snapper ceviche ($108) and wagyu beef rendang ($208).
Service: Smiley and attentive without being intrusive.
Jeng: The soft-shell crab bao ($88) is a surprising hit — the crab has perfectly crispy skin without being too dry. The beef skewers ($98) are so well-seasoned with lemongrass and sesame that you pretty much don’t need the dip on the side. The prawn and pomelo salad ($98) makes for a great palate cleanser between heavier dishes. In true Southeast Asian tradition, all dishes are made for sharing — something that will no doubt be popular with Hongkongers.
Not So Jeng: There is nothing really that outside-the-box about Soho Spice. But then again, sometimes you just can’t beat that.
Great For: Group outings — portions are generous and there’s simply no way you’d be able to enjoy a good variety if you were dining between two.
FYI: A set lunch with starter and main is $98 and features the a la carte menu’s greatest hits, like snapper ceviche and a bao sliders duo.
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This writeup was based on a complimentary media tasting. The Loop HK doesn’t guarantee/sell restaurant review coverage. See our editorial policy here.