Mon to Sat, 11:30 am - 2:30 pm; Sun, 11:00 am - 2:30 pm
Mon to Sun, 6:00 pm - 10:30 pm
$400 - $800/bottle
3 rooms for 2 to 36
Accept Credit Card
Dim sum selection
Roasted pigeon with osmanthus
Roasted Peking duck
Spring Moon draws its inspiration from Jazz Age Shanghai, and although just 26 years old, it is not difficult imagining the restaurant as an original feature of The Peninsula, with its Art Deco lines and stained glass, wood paneling and numerous antiques. The main dining area is overlooked by a verandah (actually a private dining room), giving the impression of a courtyard house with a life extending beyond the immediate restaurant. Sounds of old Chinese records create an audio background to match the stylised nostalgia of the restaurant, without descending into kitsch, while exquisite sterling silver chopstick and candle holders add the quintessential Peninsula grace. However, the tone is somewhat sullied by the lax regard for the smart casual dress code - a lady wears a rain coat to one side of us; on the other, four young women in sweaty T-shirts and denim shorts sip frozen daiquiris.
With the chef a veteran of Fook Lam Moon and the Peninsula Tokyo, expectations are set high and Spring Moon does not disappoint, with excellent traditional fare that leave us wanting more. The double-boiled sea conch with pork shank and cordyceps flower is a refined opener, clean and elegant with fulsome bites of conch to enliven the consommé (though the chicken’s foot might put some non-native diners off). Less polished is the hot and sour soup with lobster, which leans a little too much on the “sour”. Two dishes well worth a return trip (or several) are the signature roasted pigeon with osmanthus and the baked crabmeat with coconut juice in shell. The former is superbly roasted to succulent finger-licking goodness, but it is the floral notes of the osmanthus that elevates it, building with every piece of pigeon – no wonder this has been a diner favourite for two decades. The crab is equally stellar – creamy, sweet and fragrant, with an attractive crust which the server cracks like a crème brûlée to add the sharp foil of Worcester sauce. Order the braised e-fu noodles with fish maw and conpoy for a satisfying, well executed classic, delectably moreish with a drizzle of red vinegar. For a sweet ending, the chilled sago cream with mango and pomelo is pleasingly refreshing with a good balance of sweet cream, tropical tartness and astringent citrus, while the richness of the baked egg yolk buns coated with buttered coconut is childishly appealing and a lovely scalding contrast to the chilled sago.
Spring Moon focuses primarily on the premium teas that open the main menu, with a conscientiously broken down list of green, white, black and floral teas, some very rare and accordingly priced. While most fine restaurants boast a sommelier, here resident tea master offers expert advice on pairings, and staff are well trained in stewing and pouring brews tableside. A concisely curated wine list arrives on request, though for a wider perspective, the full leather bound tome of the Peninsula vaults is also available, with its discerning and regionally wide reaching selections.
The manager has been around for almost the entire lifetime of the restaurant, and he has clearly infused his passion into his team, who share a genuine pride in the cuisine and history. However, on a busy Saturday night they seem a bit rushed with dirty plates and bowls sitting around too long.
As the fine dining Chinese offering of grand dame Peninsula and a venue of sterling history in its own right, Spring Moon is a reasonable HK$700 per head for a meal inclusive of six courses and premium tea, especially in comparison with other five-star establishments.