Thursday, March 28, 2013

Yung Kee, Wellington Street, Central, Hong Kong

I had only heard of Yung Kee (32-40 Wellington Street, Central, Hong Kong, tel : +852 2522 1624) some years ago from the mentions of some friends from Hong Kong. Since then, I've been hearing mentions of it more often than I can recall and most of those have lauded the restaurant for its famed roasted geese which seems to be the thing to have here. The restaurant was even awarded a star in the Michelin guide for Hong Kong/Macau for 2010. Amongst others less prominent but still numerous awards.

Boy, did that set me up for disappointment.

I had under mysterious circumstances once discovered a stash of century eggs from Yung Kee in my house. The mystery has since been resolved, but the aftermath of the discovery left a pretty deep imprint of these delicious eggs with molten yolk. And what made the good great, was the lacking of the pungent ammonia (stench or aroma, depending on what camp you're in) that are usually found in these eggs.

The restaurant offered their century eggs as starters. While it was still pretty decent, it didn't seem to taste as good as the stash that I had uncovered before. Disappointment ups one small notch here, but nothing to cry over.

This is where downhill starts steep. I'm pretty sure that these are not the best geese in town. Seriously, I was hard pressed to find something noteworthy to mention. The meat was a little too tough and too tough to get off the bone as well. I was starting to wonder if these attributes were what made them famous and that I knew nothing about delicious geese.

In short, none of us were blown away by the goose. Far from that we were. In fact, I would label these as forgettable.

Their soya sauce chicken likewise did little to impress any of us. The meat was a little tough, dry and the skin which was lacking in flavor was a little too rubbery for me. Or maybe I'm just not accustomed to how chefs in Hong Kong do their chicken. For this, I'm grateful that I have much better alternatives back home.

Unexpectedly, the seasonal vegetable of the day with mushrooms were quite good. I don't know what these vegetables are, but they taste like a variant of mustard greens with their mildly bitter flavors and their semi crunchy textures.

And we had a light tasting braised ee fu noodles with crab meat that wasn't too bad too. But deep inside, there was the unspoken voice that had expected better.

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