Wednesday, January 31, 2018

Ho Hung Kee (何洪記), Hysan Place, Causeway Bay


We've seen Ho Hung Kee (Shop 1204-1205, 12/F, Hysan Place, 500 Hennessy Road, Causeway Bay, Hong Kong, tel : +852 2577 6060) mentioned every now and then online so we decided to eat here since we were already at Hysan Place. It was also today that we realized that there were so many floors in the mall even though we had been here before previously.

So from what I could discover, they've been around for a long time and started off with humble beginnings back in the 40s. Back in 2012, the restaurant became the first wonton noodle shop to have received a Michelin Star. That star is still around today.


Here's a bowl of their wanton mee. The smaller of the two sizes that they offered. Not bad. I liked those wiry chewy noodles which reminded me of those at Mak's. I know it's a very cliche comparison but Mak's was honestly the first place that came to mind. So - this would fall into the category where I wouldn't mind eating if I were here but I wouldn't just specially come to HHK for them.


We had stir fried hor fun with eggs, prawns and scallops. Those scallops they used were nice and sweet. Really, they were good. The flavouring of the rice noodle was light. I guess it's just how they do them. While those rice noodles were nice for a little bit, it honestly got a little boring after a while.


But there's where their chilli sauce saved the plate - so to speak. This tasted like the garlic chilli from McD. To be fair, it was more nuanced - so to speak again. Meaning that it was better tasting. So while we were worried that were could not deal with the huge portions earlier, that chilli made us inhale the entire serving with relative ease. Enjoyed this.


Steamed beancurd skin with....um....shrimp and pork I think. With dried shrimp roe. Decent if unexceptional.


Fried radish cake was fine. I think we very much prefer the creamier variety which these weren't. Spoilt by those that we've had over the years at Imperial Treasure.


Tried braised pomelo skin for the first time. They were bitter and had a texture like some kind of steamed/boiled gourd. Not my kind of thing in the department of flavour. Wouldn't eat them again.


I suppose we liked things enough to stay for desserts so here's osmanthus jelly. The flavour of the ones here were pretty good.

Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Some Japanese snacks to go from Sogo at Causeway Bay



These fish cake things had a lot of green onion flavour (obviously). I'm thinking the lemon salt was probably that dollop in the middle which had a flavour like preserved plums.


We also got ourselves one of these Hanjyuku egg which were essentially fish cake strips cradling a boiled egg.


Skewered prawn cakes with green onion.

Monday, January 29, 2018

More breakfast at Yue Hing (裕興)


We were over at Yue Hing for breakfast one morning.


Reliving their processed meat with fried egg and cabbage and peanut butter toasted sandwiches. A breakfast of heart clogging goodness.


Also tried their noodles which we've seen people having over the various occasions we were in the vicinity. The luncheon meat/spam was neatly embedded into the fried omelette and beneath it all, cabbage and instant noodles in soup.

Sunday, January 28, 2018

Burgeroom, Mira Place One, Tsim Sha Tsui


I've been hearing about Burgeroom (Shop 207, L2, Mira Place One, 132 Nathan Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Hong Kong, tel : +852 3702 0361) for some years now. For some reasons, out of thousands of posts on their burgers that can be found on the web, there has never been one done by someone knowledgeable enough to properly describe how these guys do their beef. I had an idea based on how they looked, so I guess this visit was to validate what I had thought that might be.


I was right. It was marinated and neither aged nor blended for flavour. It wasn't very beefy and it also wasn't clad in even a decent char. So yeah - the cheese and foie gras weren't killing anything. I ordered this double foie burger sans the sauce. The meat reminded me of how those patties at Botak Jones tasted. It's not as refined as Beef & Liberty nor was it as masculine as those from Butcher's Club. Not a fan, but I wouldn't mind giving their chicken burgers a go the next time.


There's truffle cheese fries on the menu. Not getting any of the truffle flavours but the cheese was kinda nice and salty and cheesy. I actually enjoyed this.

Saturday, January 27, 2018

Yat Lok 2018


Another trip back to Yat Lok for roast goose. We were there for an early lunch and it was much more crowded than what we've experienced previously for "early lunch" hours.


This time round, we had a lower quarter of the roasted goose. First time ordering that. For some reasons, it didn't seem to give us the same goose-gasm as before. Oh no! Could this be the end......?


We requested for char siew that was a little fattier today. There was definitely difference from the regular cuts that we used to get.


Nice thick lemon tea to wash down all the fatty meats.

Friday, January 26, 2018

Kwan Kee Bamboo Noodle, Wing Lung Street, Cheung Sha Wan


We made the trip to Cheong Sha Wan for some old school bamboo noodles with prawn roe. Yeap, egg noodles made with bamboo poles known as zhuk sang meen (竹昇麵); a process from back in the day when there were no machines. A experience in a taste of history for egg noodles in Hong Kong was what we were hoping for. Those bamboo noodles were exactly what Kwan Kee Bamboo Noodle (1 Wing Lung Street, Cheung Sha Wan, Hong Kong, tel : +852 3484 9126) was renowned for.


We had a couple of their dried shrimp roe noodle offerings. Didn't think so much of their wanton. The dumplings had thicker skin than I was expecting and also didn't have the aroma of dried sole. While the ingredients on the side passed muster, I wouldn't quite term them as mention worthy. But those chewy noodles with generous sprinkles of har ji (虾籽) were pretty good. Bowl of accompanying soup was nice too.

Thursday, January 25, 2018

Liu Yuan Pavilion (留園雅敘), Lockhart Road, Wan Chai


Pretty pricey but tasty Shanghainese food to be had here at Liu Yuan Pavilion (3/F The Broadway, 54-62 Lockhart Road, Wan Chai, tel : +852 2804 2000). We heard that the restaurant was known for hairy crab during the seasons so we came to try our luck to see if we were able to score anything at the tail end.


These were finely chopped vegetables with bits of dried bean curd. They were described as stewed vegetables on the menu and it was served cold as a starter. If you couldn't tell from the picture, this dish was flavoursome and also refreshing.


We had stir fried shrimps with green peas and black truffle. Not getting so much from the black truffle flavour but the shrimps were sweet. This was pretty good. Pretty pricey too.


Possibly the most expensive vegetable dish I've ever ordered - hairy crab cream with stir fried pea shoots. The cream here refers to bits of meat mixed with roe from the crab. Crabbily delicious and even more expensive than those little shrimps above.


We had originally wanted to get something with hairy crab roe but the restaurant mentioned that the dishes that were made with a lot of roe had to be pre ordered. So for carbs, more of those crab cream with ban mian (拌面). Possibly the most expensive single serving noodles we've had so far.


The noodles were served in a separate bowl from the crab cream. We tossed them together with a healthy splash of vinegar before eating. Good stuff.

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Tsui Wah (翠華), Wellington Street, Central


Of the years we've been visiting Hong Kong, this was our first time at Tsui Wah (15 Wellington Street, Hong Kong Central). It is an institution in this country which had started more than half a century back that has possibly fed millions in the years and branches it had been around. 

But given that there's a whole lot of things to eat here, one can imagine that a chain cha chaan teng would be very easy to overlook. Overlooked we did.

Anyway we did come by for lunch. They looked upgraded and it was a much better eating experience that I had imagined.


For starters, they've a Chaozhou styled fried rice with preserved olive leaves and chicken that was bloody addictive. Very savoury. The portion was huge and in an almost frightening surety - mouthful by mouthful, we finished it. 


Going meatless can land one stir fried eggs with okra and black truffle paste. Pretty decent Chinese truffle dish if you asked me. Just needed a little bit of soy sauce or salt.

In an odd bit of irony considering that truffle flavouring has been overused in the recent years, they might just have come up with a naturalized East West dish that can in probably only be conceived in this part of the world. Just saying.


There's even almond cream with egg white for desserts. The egg white bits were a bit chunkier than the usual shreds, but this wasn't bad at all.

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Belon, Elgin Street, Central


I just realized that Belon (41 Elgin Street, Central, Hong Kong, tel : +852 2152 2872) is run by the Black Sheep Restaurants group which has more than a dozen joints under their portfolio. My only other experience in their group was Motorino


Belon's French. They call themselves neo-Parisian. Classy yet contemporary. Evidenced also by an almost old-ish schooled decor with a clean marble and leather. Not that I'm an expert in interior decor. It had a sort of retro charm that doesn't smell antiquated. That's what it was. The chef's a Daniel Calvert who has a decade of experience working in Michelin starred restaurants. Ok......


They serve Estrella Damm Inedit here. Not that I expected it but I did appreciate that. Light, floral and easy drinking stuff.


I think these were gougères. Filled with 48 month aged Comte cheese. These cheese puffs were pretty damned good.


Bread's chargeable here. Belon serves a naturally leavened sourdough made in house. They tasted very fresh if fresh was the suitable word for a fermented product. Sourdough aroma was very nice and the texture was the pairing of a crispy crust with a chewy yet airy interior that tasted like it was steamed. Great with that Channel Island butter.


There's saucisson from the black pigs of Bigorre - from what I found out, also known as Le Noir de Bigorre. Those black pigs were apparently once on the verge of extinction but are now bred for high quality meat for sausages. It's nice, but I'm not sure what I paid for there.


They have their interpretation of the classic Niçoise salad with sliced shima aji and some dill. This is a half portion that they had thoughtfully split. That anchovy dressing and quantity they used all spoke of control. It wasn't too much and all the ingredients are of good quality. I liked it better than I thought I would.


Foie gras torchon great pairing with the cherries. This came with more of their house made sourdough which made me happy. 


With all the foreplay out of the way, we finally arrived at their pigeon pithivier. The very thing we were looking forward to. Dusky medium rare pigeon layered with spinach and mushrooms in a buttery puff pastry crust. Plus a fig and Amaretto pigeon jus reduction. To keep it respectfully short - this was delicious. Really expensive too. 


We were convinced by the staff that their mille crepe with Périgord black truffle was good. To give them credit, this was a very nice mille crepe. Possibly one of the best I've had with kickass Piedmont hazelnut cream. But we were not getting any of the truffle. Obviously, quite a bit of those thinly sliced fungus had been used - to no effect. 


As a self styled bistro, I smell pretentious-ness. Sure the food was nice, the staff friendly and the service very good. But not to kid ourselves, it's not a bistro. It's a finer dining establishment that's not quite fine dining and it's not bistro prices.