Tuesday, October 11, 2011

O Green Cafe

I forget where I read a review of this place but it's been on my "to try" list for a long time now. In the interests of having a healthy, feel-good meal, I finally got around to checking the place out for a light lunch before a game of squash (beach vacation in two weeks means an attempt to diet + getting my lazy butt away from trash TV...) I have subsequently been back two more times within two weeks - testament to how much I enjoy my meals here!

O Green, as the name suggests, is a small cafe serving up predominantly organic food. It's also a very vegetarian-friendly joint with at least half of the food items falling under that category. I was surprised by how extensive their menu(s) was. I had thought they would serve up simple cafe food, with one or two signature sandwiches, limp ready-made salads, and the rare pasta dish. Instead, they presented us with four menus full of drool-worthy descriptions that made it very hard to pick just one. The dishes are also labelled as being "GF" (gluten free), "V" (vegan), "HP" (high protein), low-fat, low-sugar, low-carb etc. I felt like I was on serious detox at some secluded, yoga-loving retreat in the middle of India (in a good way of course!)

While the cafe is small and cramped, I quite enjoyed the layout. One wall was lined with a bunch of organic products (cookies, jams, wines) and cook books, while the back was an open kitchen. They also played fun golden oldies music, though I suppose to most people this would be a drawback :P

On my first lunch there, I decided to go vegetarian and ordered an organic tofu and eggplant sandwich.

organic tofu cake & roasted italian eggplant sandwich ($42)

Delicious! I was impressed by how much tofu was packed in there, which was nice and lightly pan-fried, and the tomatoes and lettuce were super crispy and fresh. They also use a home-made vegan mayo dressing which worked great with the rest of the ingredients. I'm not exaggerating when I say this is one of the best vegetarian sandwiches I've had in HK! I didn't expect to like it so much given I was expecting more of a panini-style sandwich with ciabatta bread...rather than a simple whole wheat sandwich that wasn't toasted. I found out later on that you can actually request them to toast your bread but to be honest, you don't really need it once you sink your teeth into this beauty :)

fish n chips salad

The fish was amazing. Light and flaky, with a citrusy dressing that made the dish feel so fresh and summer! The potatoes were good too though we wished there were more! They do make up for it though with the hefty size of the fish, which I suppose is where the real value is :)

On my second visit there (within the same week of the first), we had:

pan-fried organic almond chicken salad ($138)

I had ordered the above with an extra side of avocado but they had forgotten it the first time round. Not a big deal though, they just added the half avocado on top:

Yum! While I did wish my salad was more colourful, it was absolutely delicious. I know this post is getting a bit boring with all my ravings about the place... but seriously. The dressing, which was a homemade basil walnut pesto sauce with hints of dried figs, was absolutely heavenly and worked perfectly with the pan-fried almond chicken which was super juicy with lots of flavour despite being breast meat. Maybe that's testament to the fact that it's organically farmed chicken? I was also glad I opted for a side of avocado because it was extra fresh and creamy. They top each salad with a lovely almond mill crumble which adds a nice crunch, but my favourite part is the addition of quinoa! Big thumbs up!

pork chop ribs ($258)

This came recommended by the waitstaff and apparently they use australian pork chops that are free-range, hormone-free and generally all-organic, healthy goodness. It comes with a yummy side salad and potatoes (though there could be more), but what was best was their house made organic marmalade to dip the pork chops in! All in all, a very succulent piece of meat that I would happily eat again.

Third visit food:

organic almond and smoked salmon salad ($138)

Okay, so this was almost like my chicken breast salad above but I really loved the salad last time and wanted my almond mill crunch and quinoa! The smoked salmon was very fresh and they gave a decent amount. There were a few sundried tomatoes in there which I always enjoy.

organic chicken breast and cheese burger ($148)

Wow!! So juicy! Cheese was so yummy (should've asked what kind they used). The dressing (tasted like a slightly tamed down version of dijon mustard) also gave it a nice kick, and I was surprised how much I didn't miss having a beef patty :P The only downside was it could've been bigger... but I guess portion control is all part of the "eating healthy" mantra!

organic brownie

The only thing that was a bit of a fail was their organic brownie. I didn't like the addition of dried fruit in it, and it wasn't moist at all. I suppose desserts should remain full fat and indulgent :P

All in all though, I've remained impressed each time I've visited and can't wait to go again! There are a number of pastas that look particularly inviting, and I definitely want to try their version of the "BLT" :)

O Green Cafe
27 Hillier Street,
Sheung Wan