Hong-Kong is a foodie holy grail and this post doesn’t even begin to scratch the surface but i will share with you a few random bites anyway. This trip also took me to Singapore and Macau but both those fantastic cities deserve a post of their own for their eclectic foods, i will get to that eventually. I took hundreds of pictures that i will upload to my Flickr page as soon as i get over my jetlag. Food is everywhere in Hong-Kong and from a cheap bite at a food stand to an expensive meal at a trendy restaurant, there’s something from everyone. I had what i thought was the best pork dish in my life on one day, and it was surpassed the next in a different restaurant. What the hell! Both were version of char siu. Both were incredible. Damn you Chinese cooks!
This picture was taken at Dynasty restaurant in Tsim Sha Tsui during Dim Sum, a restaurant that specialize in good old Cantonese food. When a Dim Sum restaurant is given a one michelin star rating you know it’s gotta be good and the service was top notch as well. The lady in red was scooping out portions of pot rice studded with scallops and shrimps into individual bowls. It was great and the crunchy rice from around the edges provided a great textural contrast.
Dynasty Restaurant 滿福樓
Address: 4/F, New World Renaissance Hotel, 22 Salisbury Road, Tsim Sha Tsui S’s4樓
Tel: 2734 6600
This was the first pork revelation of my trip also at Dynasty restaurant. What you see is an incredibly crisp and flavorful pork skin on a very thin pancake, below it was the roasted pork, tender and voluptuous. This is one of the dishes this restaurant bases it’s reputation on, and they really hit the spot. It was porkfection! (cheesy pun, check!)
This was a rather large crab and shrimp dumpling in a flavorful broth accentuated by vinegared.. something? Someone help please. It’s pickled, it’s good. err.. Help!? For the anecdote, all the porcelain used in the restaurant has the motif of the celestial dancing girl from the Tang dynasty. Nothing to do with the celestial dancing girl from the gogo bar. I don’t know for sure but i don’t think they’re related.
This dried abalone dish came after … dessert. We have had a delicious home-cooked meal and dessert when my host asked with a worried look on his face: “Have you ever had dried Abalone?” … “No, dude!” was my answer. 10 minutes later this dish was in front of me and it was absolutely incredible. I think i like it better than fresh abalone, the texture was tender and slightly chewy in a good way. The sauce was made with a whole chicken and dried scallops among other ‘secret’ ingredients and simmered for 24 hours to a golden sirupy glaze. I demand the secret of that sauce! Washed down with a glass of Dom Perignon 1996, it was pure heaven. It was then followed by a Cuban cigar and a glass of Cognac on the terrace… and a hangover the next day. Oh, my head!
This is another quite trendy restaurant called Chung’s Kitchen where i had a fantastic Dim Sum and the Best Char Siu EVER! (i will had the address to this post as soon as i find the business card) It was so good in fact, i forgot to photograph it. Oh well, i can’t torture you by posting 2 pictures of pork on the same post anyway. That wouldn’t be fair but take my word for it, if you go to Hong-Kong, go to this place and order the Char Siu. It’s.. well i already made that pun.
I liked this place so much i took my camera to the kitchen like if i owned the place and nobody seemed to care. Ok fine… it’s an open kitchen. This is a plate of pork and shrimp dumpling with a spicy sauce being prepared. Everybody say… mmmmmm.
Chung’s kitchen worked ultra-efficiently. No words were exchanged between the cooks and i’m not even sure who’s the head chef since nobody was calling the orders but all the dishes appeared from different stations at an amazing speed. I suspect they cook telepathically in a Spock meets Martin Yan kind of way. Notice also how clean and well organized the line is. I probably stayed in that spot for 15 minutes watching them cook as it was more exciting than buying a movie ticket.
This picture of an old lady scooping out ladlefuls of silky fresh tofu was taken on Lamma island after an hectic day in the city. Lamma island can only be reached by ferry (it’s a 25 minutes ride) and once you get there, surprise! There aren’t any cars! Quite a change of pace from metropolitan Hong-Kong. You walk around the small fishing village and walk up the hills into mosquito-infested tropical forest to find various street vendors, food carts and locals eating and sharing freshly picked fruits. For the anecdote Lamma island is also the birthplace of Chew On Fat… not sure of my spelling but I think he’s some kind of famous actor. Dude. I want a name like that!
The silky tofu gets a drizzle of what i think was a sugar cane syrup. Perfect for an healthy afternoon snack in hot weather. This was sooo good! I had this dessert in several occasions during my trip.
Also on Lamma island, a Satay food stand. We definitely need more of these food stands in New York. Enough with the hot-dogs already! I had the pork satay which was made from the belly and char-grilled. Pretty damn good. The squid was calling my name but i was too full by then.
This is a jasmine tree and the aroma was so strong and delicious when i passed by, i couldn’t resist to snatch a few leaves. Sorry dear owner of the tree if you’re reading this blog. I will not do it again. I’ve been a bad bad boy and i apologize to you and the tree.
There was an old lady proudly displaying a a freshly picked jackfruit in the front of her house she had just traded for some bananas with a neighbor (thanks to my friends on Twitter, this was identified as a Jackfruit). It seems to be a common practice on the island, everyone grows something and trades it for something else. The smell of the fruit is pretty strong but not as much as Durian but once you take a bite it’s pure sweetness. Me like!
This gotta be one of my absolute favorite fruit here on display in a market in Hong Kong. Mangosteens are very hard to find in the U.S which is a shame. Once you peel the thick purple skin you’re left with what looks like a white clementine. Each segment comes out easily and the fruit is pleasantly perfumed and sweet and slightly citrusy. Hard to describe for a gwei lo but good, really really good. Now can someone tell me why we can’t find this fruit in the US?
This was another fishing village on Lantau’s island, also home of the Big Buddha. The village is built on water and gets flooded once in a while but the locals don’t seem to mind.
All kinds of dried fish, squid and whatnot can be found in the village. That’s where i got a great shrimp paste from an old guy who makes it on the other end of the village. Just follow the smell.. Oh boy, it’s stinky. The shrimp paste is great though.
In the old part of Hong-Kong a few ‘street restaurants’ can still be found. Only the locals can take you there if you’re a white boy like me. You basically eat in the middle of the street, food cooked on the sidewalk in rather crummy surrounding. You’re likely to share your table with some thugs and wanted criminals but who cares since you’re here for the food. Definitely not for the faint of heart but if you can take it, the food is good and cheap. You’ll really appreciate that if you survive. The red cooked pork on noodle was spicy and delicious.
And then there was drinks, and a lots of them. I particulary like SEVVA on top of the Prince building in Central Hong Kong for the terrace, the 360′ view and well.. the drinks. There’s a restaurant there too but i was told it’s not worth the money. Instead you can stay on the terrace and order some really well mixed drinks and some crunch cake which is supposed to be all the craze in HK right now. A crunch cake is somewhere between a sponge and an angel food cake with a not too sweet icing and big chunks of caramelized meringue over the top. It was good i thought but get ready to spend some $$. I’m moving to Hong-Kong and starting a crunch cake business. Don’t tell anyone!
When the pictures get blurry is when i’m supposed to go to bed. Good night everybody!
Tags: Zen Eats!