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RestaurantSumac

Sumac

Restaurant, $$$, Middle Eastern, Central
A charming Middle Eastern restaurant perched atop of Glenealy, away from the crowds of Soho and Lan Kwai Fong
  • ReservationYes
  • Accept Credit CardNo
  • Dress CodeCasual
  • Vegetarian Dish5+
  • Bring Your Own BottleNo
  • BuffetNo
  • Corkage$200/bottle
  • Car ValetNo

Review

Located on the top of Glenealy, Sumac commands a picturesque view of the cars cruising down Old Peak Road. The Middle Eastern restaurant can also be accessed from Arbuthnot Road, which will take you through the charming alfresco back patio. The interior of Sumac is cosy and dimly lit, with various bric-a-brac such as whimsical drawings hung on the walls. Sumac is a great and unexpectedly romantic spot to take a first date.

Sumac’s menu encompasses a solid selection of Middle Eastern classics such as hummus, baba ghanoush and meat skewers, as well as some more unusual selections such as chicken livers with pomegranate or prawns with rosemary and Provençal sauce. We begin with a selection of starters, including hummus, tabbouuleh and some hot stuffed grape leaves. The hummus consists of significantly less garlic and lemon than some other local versions. We quite like this milder version as a gentle start to the meal, and also the added texture supplied by a garnish of a few unblended chickpeas. The tabbouleh is similarly good, with plenty of parsley, tomatoes and acid to whet the appetite. For mains, the signature mixed grill platter for two allows diners to get a range of the different meats that Sumac offers. The lamb cutlets are delicious, combining a smoky exterior with a nicely rare middle. The beef tenderloin is also tender and flavourful but we are disappointed with the chicken skewers, essentially chunks of dry white chicken breast. The platter comes with a dip of garlic whip, which is extremely moreish with the fries. The Lebanese rice pilaf is a lot plainer in comparison. For dessert, the autumn chocolate cake consisted of a dense block of milk chocolate with a very sweet chocolate sauce. It does not taste homemade or even particularly pleasant and we would recommend ending this otherwise enjoyable meal with a shisha and Lebanese wine on the back terrace instead.

Sumac’s wine list shows much thought, consisting of a geographically-diverse selection of wines, including quite a number from Lebanon and Morocco while not ignoring the more well-known regions of Burgundy in France, Marlborough in New Zealand and Napa Valley in California. While the staff may not be the most eloquent in providing wine pairings, they are friendly and more than happy to allow diners to taste a number of wines before making a choice.

Sumac is generally rustic and genial in ambience, and the staff are the same. While it can be sometimes difficult to get their attention on a busy night, when you do manage, they are uniformly friendly and efficient.

Dinner for two including wine comes to about HK$1,200. Considering the well-executed food and wonderful atmosphere, this is a reasonable price to pay.

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