Hong Kong’s best mussel pots

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Mussels can be prepared in any number of ways, but nothing quite hits the spot like a steaming, fragrant pot of them – especially with a generous helping of crunchy fries to soak up the juices. The perfect comfort food at any time of the year, Nik Addams shucks his way through the best in town...

Comptoir
Open for less than a year, French Creations’ westernmost diner has quickly become a go-to for a spot of relaxed Gallic gastronomy. On a menu full of comfort classics, the clams marnière ($88) hit the spot every time, delicious evidence that a dish doesn’t have to reinvent the wheel to find a place in your heart. 42 Forbes St, Kennedy Town, 2453 9873; french-creations.com.

DotCod
If you fancy your seafood, well, fancy, DotCod is just the ticket. The subterranean seafood room features an extensive menu of impressive dishes, but there’s a special section for its mussels. The two white wine-based versions are a solid choice, but for something different take a punt on the tomato concasse, olives, garlic and basil variety ($198), in which the sweetness of the fruit and saltiness of the olives provide the perfect complement to the similar flavour profile of the clams. Shop B4, Prince’s Bldg, 10 Chater Rd, Central, 2810 6988; dotcod.com.

French Window
The famed moules-frites might have its roots in Belgium, but the French are not people who like to be outdone when it comes to the kitchen. French Window’s moules marinières (sailor-style mussels) are served in half ($258) or full kilogram ($518) portions, with perfectly crisp shoestring fries to take care of the aromatic garlic and white wine sauce. Shop
3101, 3/F, Tower 2, IFC mall, 8 Finance St, Central, 2393 3812; thefrenchwindow.hk.

Frites
Our favourite resident big Belgian is a sure thing for a quality serving of marine molluscs – and you know it’s serious business when they have an entire section of the menu devoted to them, too. Go for a half ($235) or full kilo ($385) of classic combinations like the Provençale (tomato, garlic, onion and herbs), Hoegaarden (coriander, fennel, lemon zest and Hoegaarden beer), or spice it up with the laksa variety (coconut cream, lemongrass and makrut lime in a curry sauce) or the Mediterranean (chorizo, chilli, onion, coriander and yellow pepper sauce). Naturally fries are part of the deal too, and they’re served with mayo for that extra bit of indulgence. Various locations inc G/F, Oxford Hse, 979 King's Rd, Taikoo Place, Quarry Bay, 2250 5188; frites.hk.

The Boathouse
Seafood by the seaside – it doesn’t get much better. Stanley stalwart The Boathouse plates up fresh fruits of the sea in an idyllic three-storey house overlooking the Southside. There’s probably no better spot in town in summer than the rooftop here, and the experience is that much better with a bucket of fresh black mussels ($178/$248). Served in your choice of lobster broth, Thai yellow curry, white wine, garlic and cream or pesto cream, mop it all up with fluffy garlic bread and promise yourself extra time in the gym tomorrow. 88 Stanley Main St, Stanley, 2813 4467; cafedecogroup.com.

Upper Modern Bistro
Philippe Orrico’s stunning contemporary dining room is all about the finer touches. This is perhaps no more evident than in his dish of dinky bouchot mussels ($158), garnished with a classic combination of white wine, parsley, garlic and thyme. Bouchot is a traditional aquaculture method for growing mussels on ropes strung from wooden poles in the sea, resulting in grit and barnacle-free bivalves with a fuller meat and cleaner flavour. 6-14 Upper Station St, Sheung Wan, 2517 0977; upper-bistro.com.

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