Hong Kong, China
What’s in the name: In French, Ta Vie translates as ‘your life’; in Japanese, it means ‘journey’. The combination of the two words and the French-Japanese sensibility sum up chef Hideaki Sato's cuisine.
A few words on the chef: Sato was born in Nagano prefecture and started cooking in French restaurants before switching over to Japanese cuisine. He worked at the three-Michelin-star Nihonryori RyuGin in Tokyo, then moved to Hong Kong to open the two-star Tenku RyuGin.
Must-try dishes: For the full experience, go for the eight-course seasonal tasting menu, with dishes such as homemade pasta with fresh Aonori seaweed sauce and uni; sweetcorn puffed mousse with shrimp and shrimp jelly; the chef’s unique interpretation of clam chowder; and charcoal grilled pigeon with rosemary smoke and sesame oil.
What to drink? The beverage offering is an eclectic selection: not just rare French wines, but also many from Asian vineyards, as well as sake, cocktails and house-bottled teas.
Calm interior: The intimate, quiet and somewhat austere room in the boutique Pottinger hotel is an oasis in the heart of Hong Kong's bustling Central district.