REVIEW

The Square

Our first visit to The Square was not auspicious.  Popping in for lunch one afternoon, we were seated a little before 2pm, and then promptly ignored for the next 40 minutes notwithstanding flailing like a drowning man in an attempt to hail a waiter. When someone finally materialized in the vicitinity of our table, they informed us it was too late to order, and that we really should have ordered earlier because the kitchen had already closed.  Don’t think too hard about that statement or you will hurt yourself.  It was one of those occasions when you’re simply rendered mute by the sheer brazenness of it all, and also a bracing reminder of why the Michelin Guide’s stated philosophy that “decoration, service and comfort levels have no bearing on the award” is so problematic. And, naturally, a reminder of the necessity of Argus Guide.

Anyway, The Square can be a very enjoyable place to eat, provided you know what it is and what is not.  It is not a fine dining establishment, or a place you go if atmosphere or service are particularly important.  The main dining room is set on an upper level overlooking the lobby of Exchange Square and has all the ambience and glamour of a Holiday Inn banquet hall.  The dining room is raucous:  in part because it is family-friendly (which we do not intend as a compliment) and in part because the standard protocols seem not to apply (one woman’s cell phone rang loudly on the table next to us – she had gone to the bathroom – for a full minute without her dining companions ever bothering to switch it off; no one seemed to notice). 

What it is is an establishment that serves a fine seletion of Cantonese dishes, well-executed, for an affordable price.  The menu helpfully has high-quality photos of some of the dishes, so pick whatever looks appealing to you.  But the golden crispy prawns with tangerine sauce are excellently battered and have an unexpected twist from the tangerine and there is an extensive and fine selection of Cantonese BBQ: suckling pig, honey glazed barbecued pork, roasted goose, etc.   A lot of dining is about expectations, and as long as yours are correctly calibrated, a meal at The Square can be just the ticket. 

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INFORMATION

Central
4/F, Exchange Square II
+852 3965-8788
Mon-Sun, 6:30am-midnight
    Wong Hon Keung, Chef

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