Situated right at the heart of Stroud, spacious & contemporary HK House has been serving up crowd-pleasing Chinese food for a decade. The kitchen isn't about to spring any surprises on its customers, but it delivers the goods with an assured touch. The long list of appetisers comes highly recommended (from sesame prawn toasts & barbecue spare ribs), crispy aromatic duck comes with all the requisite accoutrements, including pancakes & plum sauce, while mains could range from faultlessly prepared versions of the classic Cantonese repertoire such as lemon chicken to roast pork Szechuan-style. Prices match the quality of the cooking & there are good-value set lunches, too, but HK House has one more ace up its sleeve in the shape of a cracking 40-bin list that in 2010 scooped the Louis Roederer Wine List of the Year Award.
No blingy bottles here – bar a £70 rosé Champagne, everything is below £50 – but what makes the HK House list so good are the entertaining tasting notes, as well as the diverse selection of wines, which include (Greek) Santorini and (Hungarian) Furmint, rather than non-descript Chablis or Pinot Grigio. The list has 40 wines in total, with excellent, humorous and informative notes – stories, even – courtesy of manager Chee Hui, with each one an excellent match for the food.