Great tastes of hong kong


Published on

1 Comment
No Downloads
Total views
On SlideShare
From Embeds
Number of Embeds
Embeds 0
No embeds

No notes for slide

Great tastes of hong kong

  1. 1. Exotic Local Snacks • Wonderful Western Cuisine • Dynamic Novel Dishes • The Art of Wine Tasting • Classic Cantonese Cuisine • Tradition and Innovation • Stylish and Chic Restaurants • Chinese Food and Wine • Private Kitchens • X-treme Chinese Cuisine • Tasty Vegetarian Dishes • Fast Food and Hong Kong-style Cafés • Unique “Walled Village” Dishes • Regional Chinese Cuisine • 24-hour Gastronomy • Amazing Asian Cuisine • Dim Sum Delicacies • Gourmet Food on a Budget • Western Cuisine and Wine • Classy Dishes • Seasonal Seafood • Fabulous Fusion Cuisine • Craig Au Yeung • Ricky Cheung • Chow Chung • Nelson Chow • Chua Lam • Kinsen Kam • Walter Kei • Lau Chi Sun • Lau Kin Wai • Alvin Leung • Doreen Leung • Leung Ka Kuen • Hugo Man-To Leung • Benny Li • Michelle Loo • Perry Mak • William Mark • Wai Kee Shun • • Eric Wong • Yeung Koon Yat • Rudolph Yeung • Jacky Yu • Over restaurants recommended60 exclusive interviews with gourmets Food and Wine Pairing Tips・Detailed Maps Inside The Food Critics’ Guide to the Great Tastes of Hong Kong TheFoodCritics’GuidetotheGreatTastesofHongKong
  2. 2. PREFACE Welcome to Hong Kong! Renowned as the ‘Culinary Capital of Asia’, Hong Kong offers an unforgettable wining and dining experience! Hong Kong is small and compact. You can find more than 10,000 restaurants offering numerous choices of cuisine ranging from regional Chinese food, Asian cooking, Western fare to local sumptuous favourites. That means you would have to spend over nine years (having three meals a day) to try out all the restaurants on offer in Hong Kong! In 2008 Hong Kong abolished its wine tax, and now imports over 20,000 red and white wine brands, as well as offering gourmets the opportunity to sample some of the world’s finest wines while enjoying fabulous culinary creations from hotels and restaurants all around town. These establishments have created innovative food and wine pairing menus to enhance the overall dining experience. As the Chairman of the Hong Kong Tourism Board, I am thrilled to launch the ‘Hong Kong Food and Wine Year’. Thanks in part to the abolition of the wine tax and the publishing of Hong Kong’s Michelin Guide, coming to this city to indulge in its great food and wine is becoming a must-do on every visitor’s itinerary. I am delighted, because I love food and wine. I am not a gastronome, but I definitely am a food lover. My business trips give me many opportunities to savour different delicacies prepared by renowned restaurants from around the world. I can assure you that Hong Kong is one of the world’s most amazing and enchanting food heavens. To help you explore this wonderful world of Hong Kong food and wine, we are delighted to introduce this authoritative food and wine guide that will introduce you to the charms of good food and wine in Hong Kong. The book contains more than 20 exclusive interviews with Hong Kong’s most celebrated gourmets, who share with you their knowledge and tips on food and wine pairing. They also share more than 60 tasty tales of restaurants and their specialities. The book is very useful and it is also fun to read, no matter whether you’re here on vacation, for a business trip, or for shopping and sightseeing. I hope this guide helps you explore the wonders of Hong Kong’s rich culinary culture. So take this wonderful opportunity to taste your way around the city. James Tien Chairman, Hong Kong Tourism Board
  3. 3. CONTENTS The Food Critics’ Guide to the Great Tastes of Hong Kong is produced and published by U Magazine Creative Team and supported by the Hong Kong Tourism Board. The Hong Kong Tourism Board disclaims any liability as to the quality or fitness for purpose of the products and services described herein; and makes no representation or warranty as to the accuracy, adequacy or reliability of any information contained herein. Information is correct as of October 2009, but is subject to change without prior notice. The Hong Kong Tourism Board is not responsible for any obsolescence, errors or omissions contained herein. U Magazine Creative Team is not responsible for the information, products or services provided by the third parties in the guide. Remarks: The above listing is in alphabetical order of the food critics’ last names. 34 Perry Mak Amazing Asian Cuisine 36 William Mark Dim Sum Delicacies 38 Wai Kee Shun Gourmet Food on a Budget 40 Eric Wong Western Cuisine and Wine 42 Yeung Koon Yat Classy Dishes 44 Rudolph Yeung Seasonal Seafood 46 Jacky Yu Fabulous Fusion Cuisine 48 Location Maps 48 Central 50 Wan Chai 52 Causeway Bay 54 Hong Kong Island - Others 56 Tsim Sha Tsui 58 Kowloon and New Territories - Others 60 Food and Wine Pairing 64 Dining Tips 04 Craig Au Yeung Exotic Local Snacks 06 Ricky Cheung Wonderful Western Cuisine 08 Chow Chung Dynamic Novel Dishes 10 Nelson Chow The Art of Wine Tasting 12 Chua Lam Classic Cantonese Cuisine 14 Kinsen Kam Tradition and Innovation 16 Walter Kei Stylish and Chic Restaurants 18 Lau Chi Sun Chinese Food and Wine 20 Lau Kin Wai Private Kitchens 22 Alvin Leung X-treme Chinese Cuisine 24 Doreen Leung Tasty Vegetarian Dishes 26 Leung Ka Kuen Fast Food and Hong Kong-style Cafés 28 Hugo Man-To Leung Unique “Walled Village” Dishes 30 Benny Li Regional Chinese Cuisine 32 Michelle Loo 24-hour Gastronomy
  4. 4. Craig Au Yeung's CHOICES Handmade treats to pass on our traditions Hong Kong snacks are amazingly diverse, offering foodies exotic morsels such as Taiwanese slush drinks, bubble tea, Japanese cheesecake and octopus balls. But Craig’s all-time favourite is ‘Sa-qi-ma’, a kind of caramel fritter known as ‘Ma-zai’ in Hong Kong. The name ‘Sa-qi-ma’ means ‘delicious small eats’ in the Manchu language, explained Craig. It appears to be a simple dessert, but it takes six hours to make. “I am pleased that we can still savour these handmade snacks, said Craig. “Many snacks today are made by machines.”Delicious snacks and lasting memories Craig says food is not only about filling your stomach; it is also about your mood and your environment. He loves the local food, which he has been eating since childhood. “If I leave town for three days, I will start to miss my local snacks,” he said. Many Hong Kong people grew up enjoying biscuits and comfits from Chan Yee Jai, a snack shop in Sheung Wan. Craig is a regular customer because their snacks bring back many happy childhood memories. Shrimp Roe Tofu Skin Roll is his favourite. The shop also offers comfits, biscuits, jelly drops, etc, all of which provide a form of nostalgia for many people. Chan Yee Jai Job's-tears Biscuit HK$25 Job's-tears biscuits contain tuckahoe and Chinese yam, giving a texture reminiscent of almond biscuits, with a fragrant and sweet flavour. Kwan Kee Cake Shop Black Sesame Cake HK$6/piece Grinding sesame is all done by hand. Take one bite and each of the different layers melt on your tongue, filling your mouth with the special sesame taste. Lui Chai Kee ‘3-mixed’ Fake Shark's Fin Soup HK$12 The soup includes chicken broth, and shredded black mushroom, ham, lettuce and fish meat. A must try! 04 05 Craig Au Yeung Exotic Local Snacks P.58 58 P.55 43 P.49 09 If I leave town for three days, I will start to miss my local snacks. Hong Kong street snacks are one of the city's unique experiences. Local favourites such as sweet waffle bubbles, pan-fried stuffed aubergine, green bell peppers and tofu with minced fish, fake shark's fin soup, white sugar cake, and Shao Mai dumplings offer a variety of snacks sure to delight both young and old. Take a bite out of the culture Born in Hong Kong, Craig Au Yeung is passionate about Hong Kong's nostalgic foods. He thinks eating good food is as much about pleasure as it is about lifestyle, and he finds the stories behind food fascinating. “For example, Hong Kong-style Pantyhose Tea with Milk is created by mixing different qualities of black tea. Different from the original English tea, Hong Kong-style tea has been accepted by the public and has formed part of the unique food culture,” he explained. Craig grew up in the Sham Shui Po area and regards local fresh produce as the ultimate delicacy. A popular local cake shop, Kwan Kee's specialises in a number of delicacies such as steamed rice cup cakes and white sugar cakes. Most of these tasty aromatic rice cakes are made fresh in the shop every day by grinding rice flour. “Take white sugar cake as an example,” he said. “The aroma of white sugar and rice is enticing and the cake is sticky and chewy. The subtle sour taste is unique and truly unforgettable.” If you want to taste the real Hong Kong-style flavour in your light refreshments, the food has to be fresh, and is best consumed as soon as you lay your eyes on it. If the snacks are taken home, then some of the genuine local flavour is lost. Craig Au Yeung's TIPS The Food Critics’ Guide to the Great Tastes of Hong Kong Chan Yee Jai Bird's Nest Cake HK$45/box There is a nutritious layer of bird’s nest in the middle, giving the cake a light texture. Chan Yee Jai Pitted Preserved Prunes HK$27/bag (small); $52/bag (large) The sweet and sour preserved prune is believed to have medicinal qualities; it helps produce saliva and quench thirst. True Hong Kong Flavours Chan Yee Jai Shrimp Roe Tofu Skin Roll HK$13/piece Craig Au Yeung Craig Au Yeung is a renowned cross-media artist, a food and culture columnist, and a TV gourmet programme host. He is the author of a set of culinary books entitled《香港味道》, which promotes Hong Kong cuisine culture.
  5. 5. Ricky Cheung's CHOICES restaurants serving continental dishes are listed in the Hong Kong edition of the Michelin Guide. Hong Kong chefs also perform remarkably well in international contests. This shows that the culinary skills of Hong Kong chefs specialising in continental cuisines are just as good as those of chefs from these countries. Good wine and delicacies are inseparable Friends who are familiar with Ricky know that he loves a drink and he's a cheerful companion. When cooking, he likes to have a glass of red or white wine. Ricky explained, “When a cook cooks French cuisine, Portuguese cuisine and cuisines from different countries in Southeast Asia all have their own fans. He believes that this is one of the great things about Hong Kong. One of the reasons that continental restaurants thrive here is because Hong Kong has a modern logistics industry and that helps local western restaurants to create an edge. “Their dishes can hardly be authentic if the ingredients are not good, but in Hong Kong, different types of ingredients from all over the world, from herbs to seafood, are available,” he said. No wonder continental cuisine in Hong Kong has managed to maintain such a high standard and why many Nino's Cozinha Portuguese-style Baked Shrimps in Garlic HK$128 The shrimp meat is fried and infused with ground garlic and olive oil. The juice is the best part, it can be eaten with slices of toasted bread. A Wide Variety of Continental Dishes happily, the dishes will naturally taste more delicious.” When discussing wine, he spoke with fervour and assurance. “When dining in a western restaurant, matching local wine with local dishes is the safest,” he offered. Although fusion dishes are popular nowadays, Ricky's favourite is still French cuisine. He also recommends tourists to try French restaurants in Hong Kong. “French cuisine can be regarded as one of the earliest western cuisines Hong Kong people learnt about. It has been modified by innovative Hong Kong people. They breathe new life into the dishes which are worth trying.” 06 07 Ricky Cheung Wonderful Western Cuisine Not many cities in the world can accommodate so many different cuisines as Hong Kong. Ricky Cheung Ricky is good at making contemporary continental dishes and has been cooking for more than 30 years. He was once the executive chef at Scala Restaurant in the Renaissance Harbour View Hotel in Hong Kong. He now runs Le Mieux Bistro, which serves homemade dishes and hosts radio shows, where he shares with audiences his dining experiences. In the last 50 years, western gastronomy has undergone significant changes. “In Hong Kong's early days, people believed that only French cuisine was first class,” said Ricky Cheung, who has worked as a western chef for the past 30 years. Then in the 90s, he says the eating culture of Hong Kong people began to change. People were willing to try new dishes. That in turn attracted numerous top chefs from places like the UK, France, Germany and Italy who opened restaurants in Hong Kong. So far, Hong Kong's continental cuisines cover primarily Mediterranean flavours, such as cuisines from the south of France, Italy, Spain and Portugal. And the dishes mainly use seafood as ingredients and taste blander, such as the Spanish fried rice and the French Bouillabaisse. A small place with a huge variety of cuisines “Not many cities in the world can accommodate so many different cuisines as Hong Kong,” says Cheung. “When people go to Italy, they have no problem having authentic and splendid Italian dishes. But if they are thinking of having a Chinese meal that is of a high standard, that would be a problem.” In Hong Kong, the situation is just the reverse. You can find different types of quality cuisine from numerous countries. Italian cuisine, Nino's Cozinha Fried Clams with Tomato HK$162 The tart flavour of the tomatoes brings out the freshness and sweetness of the clam meat. Western and Chinese cuisines have many differences: the art of matching wine to Chinese cuisine is relatively profound, whereas it is easier to grasp in Western cuisine. When eating Western food, it is most proper to match locally produced wine with local dishes. Ricky Cheung's TIPS Nino's Cozinha Portuguese-style Deep-fried Oysters HK$135 The dish is even more succulent when combined with crunchy fried green and red sweet peppers. Nino's Cozinha Fried Codfish with Scrambled Egg HK$86 The egg, infused with the delicious flavour of the codfish, seeps into the crunchy potato ribbons, making for a wondrously aromatic dish. Fusion 5th Floor Friendly's Kitchen Pan-seared US Wagyu Beef Tenderloin with Ratatouille and Red Wine Reduction HK$420 The US Wagyu beef perfectly matches with the slightly sour red wine sauce. H One 24-hour slow-cooked Iberico pork cheek, glazed turnips, rosemary and lemon HK$410 P.51 19 P.48 03 P.54 35 The Food Critics’ Guide to the Great Tastes of Hong Kong Special Thanks: Nino's Cozinha
  6. 6. Chow Chung's CHOICES Siu Choi Wong Restaurant Stir-fry King HK$50/standard Eight different ingredients are stir-fried on high heat, including cashews, dried shrimps, dried whitebait and dried squid, bringing out their natural freshness. Heichinrou Restaurant Fried Angus Beef Filet with Mixed Mushroom HK$188/standard The tender and juicy Angus beef fillet is fried with shaggy mane mushrooms, asparagus and deep-fried sliced garlic. 08 The Food Critics’ Guide to the Great Tastes of Hong Kong 09 Most people here prefer to enjoy a hearty home-cooked meal, which has gradually found its way into decent restaurants and become a unique Hong Kong- style cuisine. Sweet and Sour Spareribs and Steak Fillet in Cantonese Style are some of the classic dishes Hong Kong people never get tired of. Chow Chung, a veteran chef in Hong Kong, says Cantonese cooking is amazingly versatile. Among all the different cooking techniques, stir-frying is the most popular in Hong Kong. Stir-fried dishes are actually a type of home- cooking. A well-cooked stir-fried dish is a challenge to a chef's ability, as he has to put in excellent cutting skills, a sufficient amount of heat, precise seasoning, quick thickening, and to create plentiful ‘wok hei’ (i.e. the subtle combination of aroma and taste that a well- used wok imparts to food). Speedy execution is the key. Creative dishes where east meets west Chow joined the profession in the 1960s and became a head chef in 1986. The very popular fusion cuisine was Chow’s creation in the 1980s. He used western ingredients like salmon, goose liver and artichoke in his Chinese cooking. Combined with western sauce, he created nouveau fusion dishes like Abalone with Artichoke and Glutinous Rice with Chocolate and Lychee. “The dishes I create are to help people to better enjoy the food,” says Chow. Now many restaurants offer fusion cuisine. Chow said “Cantonese stir-fry has its origins in Guangzhou, but it has been developed and elevated in Hong Kong because Hong Kong is rich in resources and ingredients. People here also embrace foreign food. Hong Kong people are very innovative in business. Racking their brains, they create new dishes to attract more customers and bring wonderful enjoyment to diners,” Chow says with a smile. C h o w s a i d H o n g Kong's dai pai dongs (street side food stalls) offered the best ‘cooked-to-order’ Chinese stir-fry. “Dai pai dongs in Hong Kong can best represent local flavours. If you visit one in the evening, you will see many customers drinking beer and enjoying stir-fry. Dishes like Stir Fried Scallops with Broccoli, Diced Chicken with Cashew Nuts, are wine-friendly dishes,” he said. Wine is getting more and more popular in recent years. “Red wine matches with Fried Garoupa Head and Brisket with Broccoli while white wine matches with Fried Clams in Black Bean Sauce. Both are excellent dishes to pair with wine.” The total dining experience “Visitors should try new things, particularly seafood stir-fry dishes,” says Chow. Fried Star Grouper Fillets with Black Truffle Served in a Crispy Nest is an exciting example. The chef uses western ingredients like truffles to enhance the aroma of the star grouper fillets. A Chinese proverb says, “The birthplace is inferior to the stomping ground”. Hong Kong is a gourmet hub and thus can be seen as a stomping ground. Chow said visitors to Hong Kong should not miss out the diversity of different delicacies offered in Hong Kong. “Even if you arrive at midnight, you can still find good food. Many places offer late night dim sum and congee. Ask the taxi driver for directions and you will definitely find places that offer excellent food.” Golden Bauhinia Bauhinia Smoked Chicken with Tea Leaves HK$158/half; $288/whole Made with specially selected mature Pu'er tea, the dish is infused with the scent of tea. Golden Bauhinia Wok-fried Diced Beef with Home-made Chilli Sauce Served in a Crispy Nest HK$128 P.59 62 P.58 55 P.50 14 Chow Chung Dynamic Novel Dishes Chow Chung Hong Kong veteran chef, Chow Chung, was the former head chef of The Chinese Restaurant at the Hyatt Regency Hotel. He was invited to compete in the Japanese culinary competition, ‘Iron Chef’, a few years ago and later opened a restaurant named after him – ‘Restaurant Chinois Shirokanetei’ – in Japan. He is now the culinary consultant of Imperial Court at MGM GRAND Macau. Hong Kong people are very innovative in business. They create new dishes to attract more customers and bring wonderful enjoyment to diners. Special Thanks: Golden Bauhinia Hong Kong's dai pai dongs are brimming with local flavour. Stir-fried dishes such as Stir Fried Scallops with Broccoli, Diced Chicken with Cashew Nuts are wine-friendly dishes. Chow Chung's TIPS Golden Bauhinia ‘Dragon King’s Gold-woven Dress' (Deep-fried Prawns) HK$210 Fresh shrimp rolls covered in crispy noddles, provide for a scrumptiously fresh flavour when matched with mango juice. Cantonese Stir-fry Brings You Vibrant Flavours Value for Money Golden Bauhinia Fried Grouper Fillets with Black Truffle HK$198 When the grouper meat is combined with the scent is of black truffle the dish becomes much more mouth-watering.
  7. 7. Nelson Chow's CHOICES “The best quality wine may not always be a ‘pairing-friendly’ wine. People who understand wine tasting, all know this.” What can be done if you don't want to waste your time with a bottle of lower quality wine in a restaurant? The noted sommelier gives this tip: “Some red wines are too simple but with a bright and clear acidity. You may order a sweeter dish to bring out the fruitiness of the red wine.” ‘Harmony’ and ‘contrast’ create pleasant surprises Mr. Chow has two personal preferences in food and wine pairing. “One is to let the food fall in love with the wine, they should complement each other. The other is to make a contrast; i.e., to go for the extremes. Some people think seafood should not be paired with red wine, but if you are having smoked salmon or oyster, the smoky flavour will linger in your month. A lively bright, tart flavoured red wine will cleanse the palate and create an unexpected fresh sensation.” There's a saying ‘it is better to travel ten thousand miles than to read ten thousand books.’ The rule applies to wine appreciation too. In Hong Kong, most restaurants serve wine by the glass, it's an inexpensive way to try a few different types. Next time, when you are in Hong Kong, why don't you try Mr. Chow's suggestions? Practise, 10 11 A Wine and Food Pairing Extravaganza Special Thanks: Dragon King Restaurant Dragon King Restaurant ‘Dragon Hidden in the Snow’ (Steamed Lobster with Egg White) HK$268/standard (Pre-order only) Wine pairing: Chanson, Pouilly-Fuisse observe, and practise again, and find your favourite match. With a bottle of fine wine, dining will be a much more exciting experience. Nelson Chow The Art of Wine Tasting Adding some sweet wine to bean jelly will give a special taste, and you don’t have to add sugar either. Another trick is pairing champagne with spring rolls. Nelson Chow's TIPS A complex dish goes well with a simple wine, while a complex wine is a perfect match with a simple flavoured dish. Nelson Chow Nelson Chow, currently the Chairman of the Hong Kong Sommelier Association, has over 20 years of experience in the hospitality industry. He has been awarded the ‘Chevalier du Sopexa en Gastronomie Française’ and is a member of the ‘Commanderie du Bon Temps de Médoc et des Graves’. Dragon King Restaurant Grilled Spicy Duck HK$128/half; $276/whole (Pre-order only) Wine pairing: Château La Tour-Martillac Nelson Chow Kwok Ming, is a leading wine expert in Hong Kong. In his 20 years of professional wine tasting, he has maintained a ‘zero return’ record - he never had a customer ask for an exchange or refund after wine tasting. Surely, he is the right person to talk about the art of food and wine pairing. Four basic rules When talking about food and wine pairing, everyone knows the old rule: red wine goes with red meat and white wine goes with white meat. According to Mr. Chow, there are in fact four basic rules in wine pairing. They are: 1) pair full- bodied wines with more flavourful and richer dishes; 2) pair light-bodied wines with lighter food (such as stir-fry dishes); 3) simple wines go with multiple flavoured dishes; and 4) complex wines go with simple flavoured dishes. “For example, Chicken Liver with Cashew Nuts has multiple flavours and is therefore a complex dish. Braised, stewed, and spicy dishes all come under this food category. These dishes go well with a simple red wine. The taste of the wine won't vary a lot; it is less fruity and without a second layer of flavour,” Mr. Chow explains. “On the contrary, Roasted Duck and Steamed Egg is a simple flavoured dish, therefore a complex red wine is the perfect match.” From a consumer's point of view, deep and complex wines are usually better in quality and more costly. Concerning the prices, he says there are many choices for a bottle of quality wine, in the range from HK$200 to HK$300. Dragon King Restaurant Grilled Wagyu with Scallops HK$198 (Pre-order only) The scallops have a fresher taste, which absorb the aroma of the beef without losing their own flavour. Wine pairing: Casa Lapostolle Merlot Regal Palace King Tea Smoked Chicken HK$148/half, $268/whole The roasted chicken is juicy inside and crispy outside, with a touch of aromatic Chinese tea. Wine pairing: Regal Cabernet Sauvignon 2007 Yung Kee Restaurant Misty Pork with Pine Nut HK$280 (order one day in advance) When served, the meat is still supple. It dissolves in the mouth, and is devoid of any greasy sensation. Wine pairing: Château Fleur Cardinale 2004 P.52 25 P.49 10 P.53 29 The Food Critics’ Guide to the Great Tastes of Hong Kong
  8. 8. Chua Lam's CHOICES Imperial Duck, the finest dish to go with tea and wine. Yixin Restaurant offers the “Baked Fish Intestine”, which because the intestines need to be washed, is time-consuming to make. If the intestines are solely marinated with salt, the texture will become too chewy, so the chef will first cut open the intestines for a thorough cleaning and then they will be soaked in white vinegar to remove the smell, which will be washed for another hour. Although only simple ingredients are used in these dishes, in the hands of wonderful chefs, they have become Mr. Chua's favourite delicacies. Advice for the novice wine drinker With regard to wine tasting, Chua suggested focusing on wines from one region. “I don't think a novice should start by tasting wines from different regions. For me, French wines were my first love and my only love ever since. It takes time just to orient your taste buds to the wines of one region, get to know them and appreciate them for what they are, so you can really experience the true beauty of one wine area. Despite his eminent status as a food critic, Chua is most happy to share a table with the commoner rather than the VIPs. “Eating is not just about good food but also good mood and great company that completes the pleasure,” said Chua. interruption through the years, to the state of perfection,” Chua explained. A heritage of gastronomy It is the dedicated preservation of this tradition by many local chefs that Chua considers most venerable. Musing on the art of building the perfect dish, based upon tradition with a touch of heart, Chua cited Yung Kee Restaurant's Golden Roasted Goose as a classic example. All these years, they have been sticking to the age-old roasting technique to prepare their crispy and tender goose. That would of course call for the mastery of the veteran chef in controlling the temperature. The chefs at Lin Heung Tea House delicately prepare the whole duck by first removing the bones and then steam and stew for about 4 hours with other ingredients, including lotus seed and egg yolk. The result is the Eight Delicacy Yixin Restaurant Baked Fish Intestine HK$80 Fish intestines are baked with eggs, tangerine peel slices and Chinese fermented black beans until golden brown. Lin Heung Tea House Eight Delicacy Imperial Duck HK$150/whole A boned, grain-fed duck is stuffed with glutinous rice, dried mushrooms, salted egg yolks and ham, to be deep-fried, then simmered over low heat before serving. 12 13 Special Thanks: Yung Kee Restaurant Yung Kee Restaurant Glazed Goose Brain Jelly HK$30/piece, minimum 12 pieces (Order three days in advance) A pig skin gelatine and goose brain stew, the appearance of the dish is glittering and translucent. P.51 20 P.49 07 P.53 34 Chua Lam Classic Cantonese Cuisine Cantonese cuisine dominates in Hong Kong, thanks to its rich flavours and abundant variety. Chua Lam Famous food critic, columnist and TV show host, who for decades has graced the local culinary scene with his presence. His recent works include《蔡瀾常去食肆160間》and《世界名饌錄》. My all-time favourite is wonton noodle, a must-try for tourists seeking the complete Hong Kong experience. Chua Lam's TIPS Ho Hung Kee Noodles and Congee Specialist Stir Fried Flat Rice Noodles with Beef HK$52 Flat rice noodles fried with pork fat, where each noodle is brimming with secret sauces. The Food Critics’ Guide to the Great Tastes of Hong Kong Local Delicacy Yung Kee Restaurant Golden Roasted Goose HK$210/half; $420/whole The skin of the roasted goose is crisp and thin, with delicate and tender meat underneath. Cantonese Dishes are Simple and Authentic Yung Kee Restaurant Deep-fried Prawns with Mini Crab Roe HK$270/standard The dish was given the honour of Gold with Distinction Award in the "Best of the Best Culinary Awards" competition. Forever wonton Here in Hong Kong, Cantonese cuisine dominates the scene, thanks to its rich flavours and abundant variety ranging from plain congee, snacks and wonton noodles to sumptuous abalone and shark's fin. In between, there is a delectable selection of seafood dishes, such as the Cantonese-style steamed fish, a Hong Kong signature dish that most chefs can tackle. The food items that Chua savours the most in Cantonese cuisine are noodles, “for it's the most basic, original and simple; just my kind of food.” What's more, such simplicity also comes with endless variations and twists, be it in soup up or stirred up, making it a must-try for tourists seeking the complete Hong Kong experience.” “Hong Kong's noodles are the best you can find anywhere; there's no disputing it, even when compared with those from its place of origin, Guangzhou,” said Chua. What lies beneath that simple bowl is a long- standing tradition of quality. “Hong Kong boasts a culinary culture that has sustained and evolved without My Favourite Cantonese (or Guangdong) cuisine is among the eight major schools of Chinese cuisine noted for its light and fresh taste, along with its amazing variety of ingredients that are incomparable. Chua Lam is actually a local gourmand at heart with a palate more geared towards home than you might imagine. It's always the simple fare that does it for Chua. As he says, “ My all- time favourite is wonton noodle, or a dish of fried bean curd with bean sprouts; the simplest dishes are often the hardest to tackle!”
  9. 9. Kinsen Kam's CHOICES Creative use of ingredients Creating new dishes requires an extraordinary mastery to incorporate innovative elements of traditional Chinese gastronomy while retaining the essence of Cantonese cuisine and preserving its original culinary art. Advises Mr. Kam: “We should not innovate for the sake of innovation. The most important thing is to make the dish delectable – first of all, the ingredients must match and complement each other. When Thomas Keller (named top chef in America in 1997) visited Hong Kong, he made a special trip to dine in the Yung's Club at Yung Kee Restaurant. In addition to his specialty, Roasted Goose, Mr Kam created a Boneless Lamb Also noteworthy were the award- winning dishes he prepared for the ‘American Golden Party’ Awards in 1996. The winning dish was called Roast Goose in Delightful Varieties-New Style. For this contest, Mr. Kam transformed Yung Kee's famous roast goose recipe into five separate and original dishes. They include: Glazed Goose Brain Jelly, a crystal-clear pork crackling and goose brain stew; Guava Dumplings Stuffed with Goose. There was also the Goose Comb and Fish Brain Soup, a dish made with 30 goose combs. One spoonful contains many rich flavours, and together with the crispy combs, the dish's goose flavours ensured the award was a mere formality. Yung Kee Restaurant Crown Prince Noodles HK$30 Crown Prince Noodles are made by mixing hot noodles with goose oil, leaving an unforgettable after-taste. Bo Innovation Preserved Duck Eggs with Ginger (Dinner: HK$680/person, 8 dishes, pre-order only) The pickled ginger is formed into a crisp tube, bestowing the dish with a novel taste. Petrus Braised French Duck Liver HK$340 (Order a week in advance) French Landes duck liver is crisp on the outside and supple on the inside. Head and Leg with Dried Tangerine Peel dish especially for the visiting American guest. It used the boned head and leg of black lamb (a French favourite), which is stewed in mutton broth, with aged and dried tangerine peel slices and dried seafood. It is no wonder that this world- class chef also found it an unprecedented gourmet experience. Mr. Kam thinks that as society progresses and is transformed, traditional Cantonese cuisine develops and becomes innovative ensuring Hong Kong's reputation as a gourmet's paradise is maintained. 14 15 Yung Kee Restaurant Braised Pomelo Peel with Goose Webs (Goose Feast, HK$4,000/10 people, pre-order only) The pomelo skin absorbs the aroma of the goose feet, endowing it with a rich flavour. Everybody in Hong Kong has heard of Yung Kee, the one-star Michelin restaurant. The restaurant's owner, Mr. Kinsen Kam, devotes himself seriously to researching recipes and also enjoys reading through old books on cuisine, rediscovering traditional dishes and delicacies, and bringing customers an infinite number of surprises. Themed feasts, elegant nostalgia You may not know it, but Mr. Kam is actually a collector of old recipe books. Mr. Kam has carefully studied each and every book in his collection dozens of times, which has inspired the creation of his recent and well-known dishes such as Feast of the Condor Heroes, Jewels of the Imperial Banquet, as well as Stir-fried Chinese Kale Stalk, Winter Bamboo Shoots and Crab Roe (Gathering of Three Friends on a Cold Winter's Day), Tofu Balls with Ham (Full Moon Night at the Twenty- four Bridge). Just hearing the names of these dishes conjures up incredible images and makes people want to sample them. Old name, new goose recipes The dish Mr. Kam is most proud of his Sliced Eggplant with Chinese Mushrooms. “I cut the mushrooms into spirals, and after deep frying them, I give them a sugar coating which makes them look exactly like slivers of eel,’’ he explains. “After braising the mushroom stalks with dried scallops and shredding and deep frying them, they look exactly like real dried scallops. Special Thanks: Yung Kee Restaurant P.49 10 P.55 41 P.50 12 Kinsen Kam Tradition and Innovation We should not innovate for the sake of innovation. The most important thing is to make the dish delectable – first of all, the ingredients must match and compliment each other. Kinsen Kam The second successor to a long-established restaurant, he has been elected one of the 10 greatest talents in China. He entered the restaurant industry at the age of 17, starting out by learning how to calculate with an abacus. His persistence in creating delicacies has marked him as a true perfectionist. Yung Kee Restaurant Goose Feast HK$4,000/10 people (Order three days in advance, phone enquiry suggested) The dishes of the Goose Feast are divided into two different menus, 'Spring' and 'Summer'. Many restaurants pair wines with their house specialities with excellent results. You can ask the waiter when ordering. For example, a red Shiraz goes well with Preserved Duck Eggs with Ginger, and a white Gewurztraminer is a good match for Goose Comb and Fish Brain Soup. Kinsen Kam's TIPS The Food Critics’ Guide to the Great Tastes of Hong Kong Owner's Favourites Traditional Cooking Conecpts Inspire Infinite Surprises
  10. 10. Walter Kei Stylish and Chic Restaurants Walter Kei's CHOICES CÉPAGE Taiyouran’ Organic Egg Confit, Truffled Oxtail Gelée, Lomo Iberico, Croutons HK$360 Japanese organic eggs are cooked at a 70ºC. The dish is aromatic, rich and smooth in texture. The KRUG Room Morning Mist (Set menu HK$1,988/ person, around 10-14 dishes) Through the ‘mist’, you will see a piece of green and white ‘earth’: finely chopped parsley and garlic, plus barley and snails. Amber French roasted milk-fed lamb leg, saddle and rack, with sweetbread in eggplant, chick pea pont-neuf HK$640 16 17 relaxed atmosphere will make you feel at home,” said Walter. Many novel restaurants opened in recent years are decorated along these lines: passageways between tables are roomy and the décor creates a relaxed and unconfined atmosphere. CÉPAGE on Star Street, Wan Chai, is the perfect example. The restaurant is adorned with famous paintings and crystal chandeliers. The spacious interior and simple design showcase its avant- garde and brilliant style. The tableware is carefully picked, offering you the best First Series wineglasses from Zwiesel 1872, and J.C. Coquet golden floral pattern plates. It has a large wine cellar with a varied collection of red and white wines. Another modern restaurant that features stylish décor is The KRUG Room. There are only four The KRUG Rooms in the world. “The KRUG Room's molecular gastronomic cuisine is unique as it borrows Japanese sophisticated presentation style, elevating the dining experience to new heights.” Amber is another restaurant in Central that is a favourite among the most fashionable people in town. “Learning his craft from a few MICHELIN chefs, the Executive Chef Richard Ekkebus's cuisine offers distinctive combinations. You’ll be impressed whenever you dine at the restaurant.” Talented chefs assembled in Hong Kong by Michelin Walter believes that the publishing of Michelin Guide Hong Kong and Macau 2009 represents a breakthrough in Hong Kong's western culinary sector as more European chefs will come to Hong Kong to open restaurants or work as head chefs. They will help in further boosting Hong Kong's reputation as a ‘culinary heaven’. Special Thanks: CÉPAGE Hong Kong customers expect more than good food, and this demand is amply catered for as we can see the staggering number of classy restaurants available. Walter Kei Hiu Wah who loves travelling, certainly has some unique thoughts about good food and fine wines – the two things that are indispensable to enjoying the good life. Seeking more than delicacies “Excellent food is the reason for dining in a restaurant. But in a classy restaurant, it is only natural to expect more than good food,” he says. Walter pays attention to details in life and greatly enjoys the dining experience. “Nowadays, eating is entertainment. Apart from satisfying our stomachs, the presentation and display of food cannot be the same forever,” Walter said. Even for a simple steak, restaurants will now give it a new presentation. “The steak may sometimes be served on an iron plate or cooked in front of the customers by specialists, it's like magic shows one after the other.” A high-end restaurant will always spring pleasant surprises on customers. “The chef will spend more time cooking. For example, when preparing Alaskan King Crab Leg, Green Apple, Avocado, Caviar, the chef will adopt ‘slow cooking’ at a low temperature to prepare the crab legs. It's time consuming but the original taste of the ingredients can be kept; it's my favourite cooking method.” Scrupulous about every detail in décor and environment Apart from dishes that are particular about ingredients, Walter also pays attention to the décor and the service in the restaurant. “Thoughtful décor in a P.48 05 P.48 01 P.50 13 CÉPAGE Alaskan King Crab Leg, Green Apple, Avocado, Caviar HK$480 The salty flavour of fresh Alaskan King Crab is brought out by the caviar, making for a refreshing starter. CÉPAGE Pigeon Crepinette, Foie Gras, Vegetable Bâtonnets HK$420 French squabs from six to eight weeks of age are fed on milk and bread, making the meat extra tender. Mixed with goose liver, spinach, chicken mousse and truffle, re-roasted in a wafer thin covering layer of pork caul fat, the rich, aromatic and succulent flavour is achieved. Excellent food is the reason for dining in a restaurant. But in a classy restaurant, it is only natural to expect more than good food. Walter Kei Walter Kei is more than a food critic; he is a travel writer, lifestyle commentator, and a full-time design consultant. Familiar with many cooking and eating cultures in the world, he has hosted many TV and radio lifestyle shows. He also writes food articles for newspapers and magazines. If you look hard enough, you can discover many sincere, hard working chefs in the neighbourhoods of Hong Kong. The dishes whose preparation they supervise are top quality. Star Street in Wan Chai is one such neighbourhood. Walter Kei's TIPS Exceptional Flavours and Classy Décors The Food Critics’ Guide to the Great Tastes of Hong Kong
  11. 11. Lau Chi Sun Chinese Food and Wine Lau Chi Sun's CHOICES Wine expert Lau Chi Sun has a discerning taste in food and drink. He believes that if you know the tricks, wine and Chinese food can also complement each other. Pair the wine with the sauce first The flavours and ingredients of Chinese cuisine are so dynamic that it is one of the best cuisines to match with a variety of wines. For visitors who may not know Chinese cuisine too well, how can they find the best match? “They can pick any Bordeaux red wine. Its richly fruity and velvety character is easy to match with Chinese food,” said Mr. Lau. A big Chinese meal calls for suitable wines. Many people believe that white wines should go with white meat and red wines with red meat, but the choice of wine should take into consideration the cooking method and the sauces. “Soy sauce and thickening sauce in Chinese cuisine are ‘friends of red wine’. Take asparagus as an example, as it is difficult to match with wine. But a Chinese-style asparagus dish with glistening sauce will go well with red wine. Seafood is the same. A steamed seafood dish with Chinese-style thickening or soy sauce also go well with red wine.” He regards red wine and Chinese food as a perfect match. Food can also play the opposite role. Certain Chinese ingredients can actually ‘rescue’ a wine. The typical example is Preserved Duck Eggs. Some young red wines are both sour and bitter. If you first have a bite of a Preserved Duck Egg, the wine will be more mature and tastes smoother, sweeter and sleeker.” Sichuan ‘mala’ (numbingly spicy) offers amazing sensations Among different branches of Chinese cuisine, Mr. Lau regards Cantonese food as the most ‘wine-friendly’. “Cantonese cuisine keeps the ingredient's original, simple flavours. Red or white wine both fit,” says Mr. Lau. “Shanghai and Hangzhou cuisines are the most difficult to match as their food is quite sweet. It was recently discovered that fruity red wine or sweet wine is also a good match for them.” Sichuan cuisine has brought Lau an unforgettable experience. “After a wine tasting reception, my taste buds were overwhelmed. A friend suggested having Mala Hotpot for some stimulation. I randomly picked a bottle of fruity, floral, and light-bodied Pinot Noir. Surprisingly, the wine enhanced the Celestial Court Chinese Restaurant Sauteed Scallops with Morel Mushrooms HK$268 Wine pairing: Bordeaux, or Chianti Sheung Hing Chiu Chow Restaurant Sea Whelks in Broth Seasonal price (around HK$250/piece, 3 pieces up) Wine pairing: Vintage Champagne, or Chablis Grand Cru Wai Kee Curried Diced Lamb HK$22/small; $37/large Wine pairing: Cotes du Rhone reds, or Pinotage from South Africa 19 Red Wine Complements Chinese Cuisine Special Thanks: Celestial Court Chinese Restaurant, Sheraton Hong Kong Hotel & Towers Celestial Court Chinese Restaurant Braised Beancurd Skin Rolls Filled with Assorted Vegetables and Mushrooms HK$118 Wine pairing: Chardonnay, lightly oaked aroma in the hotpot; and the ‘mala’ also brought out the fruitiness of the wine,” he said. Red wine is a perfect match for Chinese cuisine Food and wine pairing is an acquired art. When faced with dishes that are difficult to match, Mr. Lau advise them to stop drinking wine for that particular dish. After the dish, they can take some water first before having wine again. But one should not have wine after drinking tea. Tea is the worst enemy of wine because both of them contain tannins. The wine will taste bitter if you have tea and wine together. According to him, white wine does not suit Chinese's appetites because Chinese seldom have cold drinks. White wine is also more acidic, which is not good for Chinese's stomachs. Red wine is therefore the best match for Chinese cuisine. P.57 53 P.53 31 P.54 36 Soy sauce and thickening sauce in Chinese cuisine are ‘friends of red wine’. Lau Chi Sun With more than 20 years of wine tasting experience, Lau Chi Sun is a celebrated Hong Kong gourmet and wine expert. He is the Editor and Publisher of Winenow Monthly《酒經月刊》, the first Hong Kong magazine dedicated to wine. 18 Certain Chinese ingredients can actually ‘rescue’ a wine. The typical example is Preserved Duck Eggs. Some young red wines are both sour and bitter. If you first have a bite of a Preserved Duck Egg, the wine will be more mature and tastes smoother, sweeter and sleeker. Lau Chi Sun's TIPS The Food Critics’ Guide to the Great Tastes of Hong Kong Friend of Wine Celestial Court Chinese Restaurant Steamed Sliced Chicken with Yunnan Ham and Winter Melon HK$238/half; $380/whole Wine pairing: Pinot Noir from Victoria AUS
  12. 12. Lau Kin Wai's CHOICES Uncle Moustache Shrimps with Durian HK$350/person (8 dishes), $600/person (with wine, around 8 dishes) The Shrimps and durian are deep fried to give them a crispy texture, retaining the freshness of the shrimp meat. P.55 44 20 21 Creating new dishes for sharp sensations The dishes are mainly home flavours in Yellow Door Kitchen. Mr. Lau laughs, “Taking simple bok choi as an example, at home we fry it until it's done without adding MSG, but many outside restaurants will just par boil it so it's half-cooked before frying it, giving it a completely different flavour.” “Private kitchen chefs are actually no different from housewives,” he says laughing. He often designs new dishes for the restaurant. “Good cooking comes from good ingredients, and this is a good source of inspiration; sometimes I will search ancient or even long-lost secret Chinese recipes, then improve the cooking method to create a new dish.” Travellers who visit Hong Kong and want to sample homemade cuisine should take care to book in advance, and Mr Lau suggests they choose a cuisine other than that of their own country. “First, they should tell the homemade cuisine chef about their own taste preferences to allow the chef to design dishes for them; the flavours they experience will definitely be different from other restaurants.” Special Thanks: Kin's Kitchen Kin's Kitchen Wild Chilli, Minced Meat and Dried Shrimp with Fresh Chinese Yam HK$78 Lau Kin Wai Private Kitchens Private kitchens are small in scale, so chefs and customers are closer together. Typically these restaurants are upstair residentials, only serve 30 to 40 customers every night. It is better to pre-order. Lau Kin Wai's TIPS P.54 39 P.50 11 Most of Hong Kong's new generation of private kitchens have a cultural richness, which is something that can't be found in homemade cuisine in other countries. The decor of Mr. Lau's Yellow Door Kitchen, for example, has an authentic ‘Hong Kong feel’ to it and includes calligraphy by an iconic local street artist 曾灶財. Mr. Lau says, “I think Hong Kong homemade cuisine definitely has value, and due to its small scale, an emphasis on the individual style of the chef and not too high running costs, it leaves more room for experimentation and can allow the chef to give free rein to his or her skills, helping to promote a culinary culture. I also believe that if you have distinctiveness, intimacy and an artistic atmosphere, then as far as customers are concerned, you will always be attractive.” Friendly chef, homely atmosphere Mr Lau's homemade cuisine was relatively ordinary, and although the venue was quite off the beaten track, it nevertheless gave people a distinct homely feeling. “The most important thing is not to have menus, and after customers have finished eating, the chef should chat and exchange ideas with them,” he said. This new generation of private kitchens, feature an interesting choice of unique and creative dishes. The ingredients tend to be of the highest quality, while the restaurants themselves offer guests an attractive ambience. Most of Hong Kong’s new generation of private kitchens have a cultural richness, which is something that can't be found in homemade cuisine in other countries. Lau Kin Wai He is running private restaurants Yellow Door Kitchen and Lau Sheung Lau. He normally enjoys going from place to place searching for delicacies and writing newspaper and magazine columns. He is also a distinguished art critic with artistic aspirations. The Food Critics’ Guide to the Great Tastes of Hong Kong Amy Vegetarian Food Shark's Fin Soup (HK$2,000/table, 10 people up) Pumpkin dipped in vinegar gives the incredible taste of the hairy crab.. Kin’s Kitchen Lau's Smoked Chicken HK$228/whole The chicken is succulent and tender; marinated in roses and brown sugar then smoked. Cuisine Expert Talks about Homemade Tastes Kin's Kitchen Prawns with Walnut HK$42/prawn Each prawn (weighing a stunning 4 taels) is crispy to the mouth and succulent in texture. Kin's Kitchen Pan Fried Stuffed Dace HK$138 The chef first removes bones from the meat, which is then minced into a patty. After seasoning, the patty is stuffed back into the fish. The perfect combination of the crispy deep-fried fish skin brings a double texture to the dish.
  13. 13. Alvin Leung's CHOICES Bo Innovation ‘Lap Mei Fan’ (Lunch HK$198/person, 5 dishes) It is a dessert bursting with originality. The taste is smooth, yet the flavour carries the salty aroma of traditional Chinese sausage. Mak An Kee (Chung Kee) Noodle Genuine Wonton Noodles HK$23/small; $34/large The wontons are exquisitely prepared, with a strong shrimp flavour, making for a memorable dish. The Drawing Room Fettuccine with Prawns HK$300 Cooked with herbs, vegetables and chicken broth, the buttered fettuccine delivers a chewy texture. P.50 12 P.52 23 P.49 08 cooking skills, I intend to revolutionise Chinese cuisine completely. That's why I created the X-treme Chinese Cuisine.” Every bite brings a new discovery and is a test of the diner's sight, touch and taste. After deconstruction and transformation, the dishes come with unexpected textures and boast a perfect blend of ingredients with different flavours and from different seasons. After trying Bacon and Egg Ice Cream in the UK, Alvin was inspired to create a Hong Kong version. This is how the restaurant's original dish Lap mei fan (臘味飯雪糕) was created. The dish is carried in a wine glass and covered with a layer of crispy rice, a typical Shanghai cuisine ingredient. The crispy rice nicely Nicknamed the ‘Demon Chef’, Alvin Leung, uses low temperature and slow cooking, as well as dehydration in all his dishes to create X-treme Chinese Cuisine (Chinese innovative cuisine). So, if you order Hong Kong- style Glutinous Rice with Air- Dried Meat at Bo Innovation and get a scoop of ice cream, or if you are given a cup of mousse when ordering Braised Pork with Preserved Vegetable, don't think that the waiter has made a mistake. It is actually the ‘Demon Chef’ playing his little tricks on your vision and taste. Playful ideas create new flavours Alvin, the owner of this restaurant, says “By matching different ingredients, we can create new flavours. Customers who come to my restaurant are like someone searching for treasures among the ingredients. They can play around, appreciate and enjoy the experience.” “This is why I named the restaurant ‘Bo’, sets off the smooth texture and coolness of the ice-cream. The dish tastes exactly the same as glutinous rice with air-dried meat, but is not as oily as the conventional one. The creative effect is simply remarkable. ‘Innovation’ Requires ‘Convention’ “In order to let diners experience the fun of ‘magic’, we have to create dishes diners are familiar with, so I start with traditional Chinese cuisine,” said Mr. Leung. Taking Oysters with Ginger and Scallion as an example, Alvin noticed the common use of ginger and scallion in Cantonese cuisine for seasoning. Of course, Alvin will not tolerate any ordinary presentation, so he turned the ginger into ice powder and sprinkled it on top of Alvin Leung X-treme Chinese Cuisine Customers who come to my restaurant are like someone searching for treasures among the ingredients. They can play around, appreciate and enjoy the experience. It is very interesting! the oysters. “Oysters are normally served cold and the frozen ginger powder goes especially well with it,” he said. The dish Xiao Long Bao (小籠包) is a dish that many visitors to Hong Kong would often try in Beijing, Sichuan and Shanghai restaurants. With Alvin's talent, this common dish is transformed into one of his proudest creation. The Xiao Long Bao's thin layer of skin holds the soup inside; while the Zhejiang vinegar is solidified; you do not need to dip in vinegar to enjoy a traditional taste, which gives diners a pleasant surprise. This is the creativity of Hong Kong people, which is epitomized in all kinds of cooking, that give customers a unique experience with new taste sensations. Alvin Leung Alvin is an engineer operating a restaurant as a side business. Although having no formal culinary training, he has tried delicacies from all over the world. His restaurant Bo Innovation has been awarded two Michelin stars. which means ‘treasure’ in Chinese,” he continued. Every bite brings a new discovery Alvin's most surprising ‘trick’ is changing the presentation of traditional food while maintaining its original taste. Said Alvin:“By fusing together age- old gastronomy which has been passed on for hundreds of years with modern Bo Innovation Oysters with ginger and scallion (Dinner HK$680/person, 8 dishes) 22 23 Bo Innovation ‘Xiao Long Bao’ (小籠包) (Lunch HK$680/person, 8 dishes) Using only the juices from the steamed buns, wrapped in a thin membrane. The flavour is no different from ordinary steamed Xiao Long Bao. Special Thanks: Bo Innovation The combination of fine wines and good food can be compared to the pairing of prince charming and his princess – they are the perfect match. But the art of pairing is subjective, so I usually select two glasses of wine for my guests. For example, Lap mei fan can go just as well with red wine as with white wine. Alvin Leung's TIPS Back to Basics ‘Demon Chef’ Reveals His Secrets The Food Critics’ Guide to the Great Tastes of Hong Kong
  14. 14. Doreen Leung's CHOICES M Garden Vegetarian Thai Style Steamed Tofu Fish HK$95 The fish is created from fresh bean curd, seaweed, imitation meat floss and Enoki mushrooms in combination with Thai spices. Kwai Tak Kun Veggie Palace Sweet Dew Dumpling Soup (Set menu HK$198/person, around 10 dishes) The toothsome dumpling soup is prepared by using mock shark’s fin, aloe and corn. 24 25 Special Thanks: Chi Lin Vegetarian in Nan Lian Garden As Hong Kong people get more health conscious, vegetarianism has become more popular. In the past, vegetarian food was seen as dull and bland. But today, chefs in Hong Kong's vegetarian restaurants are adding new and exciting flavours so that vegetarian dishes are as diverse as meat dishes and never fail to surprise customers. Appealing dishes with incredible flavours “Vegetarian dishes in Hong Kong are based on Cantonese cuisine with a touch of different styles from northern Chinese provinces, Europe, the Americas, and Japan,” said Doreen. Nouveau vegetarian dishes are mainly prepared with ‘vegetable only’ ingredients. The crisp freshness of green vegetables, fungus, bean products and taro deliver a host of tastes and textures to the table. For example, ‘Baked Truffle and Beancurd in Maitake Sauce’ provides a pleasant surprise, since the dish may look a little like western-style baked mushroom in cream sauce at first glance. The silky smooth tofu mixed with the unique aroma of fungus is unforgettable. There is innovation in this cooking method too, as bold and adventurous chefs are never afraid to try new things. For example, ‘Thai Style Steamed Tofu Fish’ is prepared with simple ingredients such as common vegetables like tofu skin, Chinese mushrooms and mock meat. But the chef has to utilise delicate culinary techniques to deliver a new flavour. Tranquillity in a secluded environment In choosing a restaurant, Doreen looks for food quality as well as a secluded environment with refined and comfortable décor. Chi Lin Vegetarian in Nan Lian Garden Baked Truffle and Beancurd in Maitake Sauce HK$55 /person (pre-order only) P.58 54 P.51 17 P.58 56 Doreen Leung Tasty Vegetarian Dishes In a Buddhist cuisine restaurant, we are forbidden to drink wine. But taking wine in a normal vegetarian restaurant is not a problem. White wine matches vegetarian dishes prepared with vegetables and soy-based products since the taste is not too rich. Doreen Leung's TIPS A good example is the Nan Lian Garden built in the ancient style of the Tang dynasty which offers a serene environment. “Before eating in the restaurant, you can stroll in the garden where you will find tranquillity and comfort,’’ said Doreen. Vegetarian and Buddhist Cuisine are different Many people think that Buddhist cuisine is the same as vegetarian cuisine. They are in fact quite different. The usual ingredients of Chinese Buddhist cuisine are Chinese black mushrooms, straw mushrooms and closed cup mushrooms (three mushrooms) combined with different fungi. Buddhist cuisine does not use strong spices like spring onion, garlic and Chinese chives. But normal vegetarian dishes have no such restrictions; some vegetarians even consume egg products. “In a Buddhist cuisine restaurant, we are forbidden to drink wine. But taking wine in a normal vegetarian restaurant is not a problem. White wine matches vegetarian dishes prepared with vegetables and soy-based products since the taste is not too rich. But if you are having angel hair pasta with garlic, a glass of red wine will be the best match,” said Doreen. A Taste of Vegetarian Creativity Chi Lin Vegetarian in Nan Lian Garden Steamed Beancurd Morel Fungi and Medlar HK$88 The Morel mushroom is uniquely fragrant, and makes the tofu even more delicious. Chi Lin Vegetarian in Nan Lian Garden Red Bean Balls HK$20/3 pieces (Pre-order only) Made purely from ingredients like red bean paste and sesame, the natural, sweet flavours are perfectly pleasing. Nouveau vegetarian dishes have been very innovative; the chef has to utilise delicate culinary techniques to deliver a new flavour. Doreen Leung As a veteran columnist, she won the Champagne Louis Roedevre Ancient Silver Cup Award, Gastronomy Society La Chaîne des Rôtisseurs in 1979. Doreen Leung was the first woman honouree of the ‘Outstanding Young Persons’ in the world. She has studied healthcare through food therapy for over 20 years and is very knowledgeable about vegetarianism. The Food Critics’ Guide to the Great Tastes of Hong Kong Chi Lin Vegetarian in Nan Lian Garden Deep-fried Bean Paste Patty cum Laver Roll Vegetarian feast HK$3,300/12 people Chi Lin Vegetarian in Nan Lian Garden Sweet and Sour Crispy Rice HK$78
  15. 15. Leung Ka Kuen Fast Food and Hong Kong-style Cafés Leung Ka Kuen's CHOICES Café de Coral Chicken in Glutinous Rice HK$20.5 (Only available at breakfast, comes with milk tea) It is filled with sumptuous ingredients prepared with fragrant and rich oyster sauce. The subtle aroma of lotus leaf is delightful. Lan Fong Yuen ‘Lou Ding’ (撈丁) Set with Chicken Fillet HK$37 (comes with hot drink) $39 (comes with cold drink) The chewy noodles with the instantly fried chicken make a real palatable treat! Tsui Wah Restaurant Butter Bun HK$12 The bread is baked to be crispy outside and soft inside, with a butter and condensed milk filling that makes for an alluring aroma. 26 27 Experience Local Flavours & Colours Kong-style café and a fast food eatery. Leung's recommendation is to simply taste around: “You've got nothing to lose and everything to gain at a tea set that costs you just over 10 bucks and a hot pot at 40 to 50 bucks,” he said. Besides, each shop delivers a unique facade of Hong Kong along with the authentic local flavours. In a nutshell, the unassuming décor makes it the perfect backdrop for relaxing social and culinary pleasures. Better yet are seasonal delights such as Ice Cream Sago with Red Bean in Shaved Ice, Chilled Sago with Mango and Pomelo; winter warmers like Hot Pot for One and Petite Potted Rice. The range of ingredients, again, could span from basic beef and vegetables to delicacies like geoduck and miniatus grouper. The drink lists are also far more impressive than regular restaurants; think Aloe Vera Almond Coconut Juice. Hot deals for hearty meals Around virtually every corner throughout Hong Kong's 18 districts, you can easily stumble upon a Hong “Take note that most of these eateries only have Chinese menus; your best bet is to order by looking around at your neighbours for the most popular dishes,” he said. At the end of the day, the pleasure lies with the exciting discovery of Hong Kong's very own epicurean way of life. Special Thanks: Café de Coral P.55 42 P.56 49 P.49 06 Whenever I am away from Hong Kong, one thing I certainly miss is milk tea, not least because of the flavour that’s nowhere else to be found. And for that matter, calling it ‘Hong Kong-style Milk Tea’ is just perfect for something made in Hong Kong, for Hong Kong. Leung Ka Kuen A veteran Hong Kong journalist who is currently Associate Editor-in-Chief of East Week and a food columnist for other magazines. His published works include《尋找失落的菠蘿油》、《沒有粉絲的碗仔翅》。 Café de Coral Roast Pork Combo with Rice HK$27.5-29.5 (lunch); $32.5-34.5 (dinner, comes with drink) The streaky tenderloin pork has an even distribution of meat and fat with a crispy skin. Combined with cuttlefish, pink sausages and salted egg, the dish is abundant in its delicious flavours. When it comes to Hong Kong's culinary icons, nothing beats Hong Kong-style cafés and local fast-food eateries. Leung Ka Kuen, known as ‘the commoner's gourmand’ is a regular at these types of eateries. Sometimes he even eats at these sorts of places three times a day! Milk tea tops it all Hong Kong-style Milk Tea, one of the must-try items on any Hong Kong-style café menu, is made from a mixed variety of teas and then infused with evaporated milk. It is percolated with a stocking-like filter, thus earning its nickname - Stocking Milk Tea. “Whenever I am away from Hong Kong, one thing I certainly miss after a while is milk tea, not least because of the flavour that's nowhere else to be found,” he said. “And for that matter, calling it ‘Hong Kong-style Milk Tea’ is just perfect for something made in Hong Kong, for Hong Kong.” A smorgasbord for one and all These days, a new generation of Hong Kong-style cafés and fast food eateries are dishing out all kinds of ethnic flavours, namely Spaghetti with Tuna and Cheese Sauce, Korean Stone Pot Rice, Sizzling Plate Meals, Portuguese-style Roast Suckling Pig, and Paper-wrapped Sole Fillet. At some eateries where food is served 24 hours a day, you can chow down on whatever tickles your fancy whenever you want, be it a simple Toast and Milk Tea or sophisticated stir-fried dishes. Café de Coral Baked Thick-cut Pork Chop with Rice HK$31 (lunch), HK$36 (dinner, comes with hot drink) Many fast food chain restaurants have set up branches all over Hong Kong, offering different cuisines at different times of day. For example, for breakfast you can try Chicken in Glutinous Rice, and for afternoon tea there is the Fake Shark-fin Soup. You can try genuine local cuisine no matter wherever you are and whatever time of the day! Leung Ka Kuen's TIPS The Food Critics’ Guide to the Great Tastes of Hong Kong
  16. 16. ‘Gourmet king’ Hugo Man-To Leung likes ‘walled village’ cuisine, turning humble country dishes into high-end delicacies. As Chef Leung says, “walled village dishes impress customers with the cooking skills involved, not the use of expensive ingredients.” Walled village cuisines, consists of the everyday dishes from Yuen Long walled villages. The villagers take ingredients from their land, mainly vegetables and meat, including taro, chicken, duck, goose, pig and occasionally fish. They cook everything in season. Together with local sauces such as fermented red bean curd and simple cooking methods they create, what Mr. Leung calls “simple but effective dishes”. Simple cooking methods, eating seasonal produce ‘Walled village’ dishes have a rich, dark texture, and are different from Cantonese dishes found in Chinese restaurants. Dishes like the traditional Poon Choi Pork, Chicken Cooked in Five Sauces, Fried Mung Bean Shoots with Silver Shrimps Hugo Man-To Leung's CHOICES Tai Wing Wah Restaurant Crispy Deep-fried Pike Eel HK$52 The pike eel, fried to a golden yellow colour, is refreshingly delicious and crisply aromatic. Siu Tao Yuen Restaurant Fried Rice with Flat Crab Roe HK$68 Fried with the fat from over 100 flat crabs, producing a rich aroma. Pong Kee Seafood Restaurant Stewed Rice with Crab HK$180 With the abundant fresh crab meat added to the fried rice, the sweet, fresh flavour envelops you with every bite. P.59 60 P.59 59 P.59 63 and Clams and Large Grey Mullet Poached in Water, are some of the dishes from this traditional style of cuisine. “What is in season? Foods like winter melon, leeks and lotus root can be stir-fried, while duck, eel and chicken can be cooked in a million ways.” Every month, he creates 20 new recipes, so even if a customer comes to Tai Wing Wah Restaurant 28 29 once every month, he won't have to order the same dishes. “Whenever I find any suitable spices, I will use them to modify traditional dishes. For example, for the dish Chicken Cooked in Five Sauces, it is composed of Sichuan pepper, star anise, cinnamon, dried citrus peel and nutmeg, soaked in premium soy sauce, Chinese rose wine and sugar. I then add basil to remove the unwanted smell.” Each dish has a story Though the dishes of traditional walled village cuisine are not delicately presented, they convey very meaningful messages. For example, Fried Mung Bean Shoots with Silver Shrimps and Clams was a dish typically served for a farewell meal. Mr. Leung recounts, “In the past, many Yuen Long residents had to go overseas to earn a living. The silver shrimps in the dish symbolised fellow villagers crossing the ocean to foreign countries, the clams were a metaphor for the ‘brothers’ who stayed and guarded the walled village, while the mung bean shoots stood for ‘a long time’; so with all the ingredients mixed and fried together, while the ‘brothers’ were far away from one another, the bond with and affection for the family would last forever. Special Thanks: Tai Wing Wah Restaurant Tai Wing Wah Restaurant Fried Braised Pork with Lotus Root and Flowering Chives HK$52 Walled village dishes impress customers with the cooking skills involved, not the use of expensive ingredients. Hugo Man-To Leung Renowned as a ‘gourmet king’, he is the Director of Tai Wing Wah Restaurant. He has been awarded grand prizes by many gourmet societies from different countries, including the Grandmaster of Chaîne des Rôtisseurs, Gold Award Member of the Chaîne des Rôtisseurs and Honorary Chairman of Ordre International des Disciples d'Auguste Escoffier, etc. Not to eat out of season is the most prominent characteristic of the ‘walled village’ cuisine in Hong Kong. Around Ching Ming Festival is when pike eel becomes most plump and delicious. Crispy deep fried pike eel and fresh salted pike eel are dishes both not to be missed. Hugo Man-To Leung's TIPS The Food Critics’ Guide to the Great Tastes of Hong Kong Tai Wing Wah Restaurant Stewed Chicken with Spicy Ginger and Vermicelli HK$52 Hugo Man-To Leung Unique “Walled Village” Dishes More of Hong Kong’s Traditional Flavours
  17. 17. Benny Li's CHOICES Liu Yuan Pavilion Drunken Shrimp HK$90 The shrimp is soaked in the yellow wine lees for half a day. The fresh shrimps are sweet, giving out a wine fragrance. Old Beijing Leek Bun HK$30/2 pieces The chive and egg filling is flavourful without losing its freshness or lightness, making it a great snack. Hang Zhou Restaurant Stewed Old Duck HK$268/half, $536/whole The duck is stewed with preserved three-year- old Jinhua ham in a casserole for four hours before it is served. importance to the exquisite cutting skills. Famous dishes include Stewed Pork Balls in Clear Soup, Tofu Soup with Ham and Minced Vegetables, Braised Shredded Chicken with Ham and Dried Tofu etc. To prepare the Tofu Soup with Ham and Minced Vegetables, the chef has to cut the slippery tofu into fine shreds. “I believe the reason why people come and taste dishes from other provinces in Hong Kong is mainly out of nostalgia. I grew up in Shanghai, and my greatest wish when I was young was to eat a bowl of Braised Pork in Brown Sauce all by myself. The tender meat, delicious smell and the appetising sauce of Braised Pork can really make this an excellent dish. When combined with big bowls of rice, it also makes me think it was the most delicious food ever - even now!” He considers the most important characteristics of Sichuan cuisine to be: “one style for one dish, a hundred flavours for a hundred dishes” instead of all the dishes simply being hot. Actually, he said, some of the dishes have fresh and sweet flavours. Local flavours - taste of nostalgia Shanghai food is another popular cuisine among Hong Kong people. It consists of traditional local cuisine and modern Shanghai-style cuisine. The former evolved from ordinary household dishes with heavy tastes, which are relatively plain and affordable. The traditional dishes include Stewed Pork Trotters in Brown Sauce, Sautéed Shredded Eel, Eight- Treasure Rice Pudding. The modern style is refined Shanghai cuisine which includes Huaiyang cuisine, which attaches greater 30 31 Special Thanks: Liu Yuan Pavilion Sweet Temptation From China’s Provinces Enjoy the tastes of Sichuan The most popular type of Chinese cuisine amongst foreigners comes from Sichuan, says Benny. “Sichuan food is popular among foreigners for its unique hot and spicy flavours.” The spicy taste is added to the hot flavours as the result of seasoning with prickly ash, a taste of which leaves a numb sensation all the way from tongue to the lips. Stir-fried tofu in hot sauce is a classic Sichuan dish. Born in Shanghai and raised in Hong Kong, Benny Li likes to travel and taste delicacies from all over China. That is why he is thoroughly familiar with the cuisines from each province in China. Hong Kong, he says, features many restaurants offering cuisines from other provinces in China, most of which are run by immigrants from these regions. They have adopted authentic cooking methods and purchase ingredients and seasonings from Mainland China. These dishes are just as good as the same dishes cooked in China. When it comes to Beijing food, the present cuisine consists of four varieties, namely imperial cuisine, Chinese aristocrat, ordinary household and merchant. Imperial cuisine refers to the dishes prepared in the Emperor's kitchen during the Qing dynasty and it's famous for its elaborate cooking methods and strict selection of ingredients, such as Beijing Stuffed Duck, Sweet Pease Pudding etc. Chinese aristocrat cuisine originated from the Tan Family's cuisine which featured fresh flavours and tender texture. One of its famous dishes is Braised Shark's Fin. Merchant cuisine adopted quick frying with coriander or sautéed in chilli sauce as its main cooking methods, which is also characterised by using expensive ingredients. Ordinary household cuisine is the food prepared by grassroots people living in the Hutong, as the name suggests. P.51 18 P.50 16 P.52 28 Benny Li Regional Chinese Cuisine No matter where you come from, you can definitely find your favourite dishes here! Benny Li Benny is a famous gourmet in Hong Kong, a columnist for various publications and magazines and was a host for popular catering TV shows. Currently, he organises tour groups with travel agencies, taking travellers everywhere for food and fun. Liu Yuan Pavilion Fried Prawn and Crab with Salty Eggs HK$480 An extremely tasty fried dish with the most beloved seafood combination: prawn and crab. The best wine to go with Chinese regional cuisine is Taidiao wine. Taidiao wine at room temperature is silky smooth. It is the perfect match with Shanghai crab meat and roe dishes. Benny Li's TIPS The Food Critics’ Guide to the Great Tastes of Hong Kong Liu Yuan Pavilion Diced Ham with Gordon Enryale Seed and Sweet Peas HK$160 The crunchy gorgon fruit with braised ham and sweet peas provides you a sweet and savoury sensation. Liu Yuan Pavilion Honey Ham in White Bread HK$180 This amazingly tender Yunnan ham is honey-glazed with the aroma of osmanthus. The ham goes well with a waffle.
  18. 18. Michelle Loo's CHOICES Sun Kwong Chiu Chow Restaurant Fried Clams in Chilli and Black Bean Sauce HK$70 Stir-fried fresh clams complemented by a black bean sauce make it an amazingly delicious dish. Fong Wing Kee Hot Pot Restaurant Premium Beef HK$168 Hand-sliced from the fresh beef supplied daily, it is extremely tender in texture. Auntie Sweet Super Durian Slush Drinks HK$42 This dessert is made using durian sorbet, durian cream sauce, durian ice cream, fresh durians, dried durians and durian wafers. Mmm Good! 32 33 Michelle Lo, previously a reporter and now a columnist, always finishes work late and her usual dinner is a late night snack. “In my days as a reporter, I covered celebrity news,” she said. “We always had midnight snacks after film premieres or gala parties. Sometimes we even bumped into film stars or celebrities in midnight eateries.” Hong Kong is a city that never sleeps as people flock to restaurants and jostle for something to snack on well into the night. The diversity of late night dining in Hong Kong is exhilarating: Chiu Chow ‘da lang’ (which refers to Chiu Chow delicacies in general), hotpot, sweets, noodle, rice porridge are just some of the tempting fare available. Sweets can comfort the soul and are always a delight, she said. Heart-warming homemade-style sweet soup is a popular choice for a late night snack. “I used to live in Shek Tong Tsui and many street vendors sold sweet soups from carts every night. Now in places like Causeway Bay and Mong Kok, you can find dozens of sweet soup chain stores like Hui Lau Shan Healthy Dessert, Lucky Dessert, and Honeymoon Dessert,” she said. Light up the night with food Hong Kong people go for late night dining because they work long hours, way past normal dinnertime. “Most of us like to sit down in a restaurant and enjoy some good food,” she said. “Hong Kong people are particular about food and they want hot and made fresh. Late night diners have become more and more popular, offering people many choices.” Most late night diners in Hong Kong operate till 2am, with some even open around the clock serving everything from sandwiches and noodles to heavier dishes like steak on an iron plate, fried rice, and stir-fried dishes. You can even find exotic foods like Hokkaido milk egg white custard, Japanese skewers, German pork hocks, Turkish-style barbecue, and fried crab with salted eggs yolk. ‘Dai pai dongs’ (street food stalls) are some of the best places to experience the bustling late night dining culture in Hong Kong. Happy as a clam! Among all the late night snacks, Michelle loves Chiu Chow ‘da lang’. She always orders fried clams with black bean sauce and chilli and pan- fried oyster pancake. The clam dish provides a wonderfully spicy sensation, while the oyster pancake deep-fries the oyster in flour and egg batter making it fresh and crispy. Michelle said the atmosphere is the most important element in late night dining. “Usually after having dinner, my friends and I want to sit down and have a chat. The dishes may be the same, but they taste better when you feel relaxed. Having hotpot in the middle of the night in winter with your friends is especially heart-warming. Special Thanks: Sun Kwong Chiu Chow Restaurant P.58 57 P.54 38 P.53 32 Michelle Loo 24-hour Gastronomy Usually after having dinner, my friends and I want to sit down and have a chat. The dishes may be the same, but they taste better when you feel relaxed. Michelle Loo Michelle Loo is a renowned TV and radio show host and food columnist. She travels around Hong Kong to track down the best eateries. Sun Kwong Chiu Chow Restaurant Crispy Hand-made Cuttlefish Balls HK$68 The chewy cuttlefish balls are wrapped in a spring roll wrapper, which is unexpectedly tasty. Sun Kwong Chiu Chow Restaurant Homey Oyster Omelette HK$58 The combination of the chewy sweet potato batter and fresh oyster delivers an exciting flavour and texture. People will drink beer when having late night snacks. Beer is a low alcohol beverage, so you don’t need to worry too much about getting drunk. Michelle Loo's TIPS The Food Critics’ Guide to the Great Tastes of Hong Kong Enjoy Late Night Dining in Hong Kong Sun Kwong Chiu Chow Restaurant Goose Necks Marinated in Master Stock HK$120 The dish is prepared by using top-quality goose. The goose necks are carefully chosen for their tenderness.
  19. 19. Perry Mak's CHOICES Sushi Hiro Flying Fish Sashimi Seasonal price (around HK$100) The fish is imported directly from Kyushu, Japan. The sashimi is sliced paper thin and the fish is so fresh and sweet! NADAMAN Japanese Restaurant Mini Kaiseki Set HK$420/person All dishes are made from premium fresh Japanese ingreditents, dishes including Matsuba crab meat and kelp with cucumber, codfish Saikyo yaki. Great Asia Japanese Restaurant Red King Crab with Asparagus (with sesame sauce) HK$90 The sweet Hokkaido red king crab, fresh asparagus and rich sesame sauce combine to form this sensational treat. Perry Mak loves travelling and is particularly passionate about Japanese cuisine. “The Hong Kong people's love for Japanese cuisine has something to do with their adoration of Japanese culture,” he said. As early as the 70s, Japanese pop songs and movies captured the heart of Hong Kong people and the trend of adoring Japanese culture has been pervasive. Since then, opting for Japanese cuisine is a symbol of trendiness. Hong Kong people love Japanese culture There are many Japanese restaurants in Hong Kong. Apart from enjoying the finest Kaiseki Ryōri in an upscale restaurant, you can also choose a boisterous Izakaya to taste sake and Robatayaki, or have authentic sushi at a sushi shop. The conveyor belt sushi shop, a favourite among youngsters, is another interesting option. In Hong Kong, it is not difficult to sample fresh seafood imported from Japan. “This is what we mean by having the opportunity to taste a bounty of delicious food if you are near the kitchen.” A perfect bite of sushi Among all the Japanese cuisines, Nigiri sushi is Perry's favourite. In appearance, Nigiri sushi is a piece of sashimi on top of a bed of sushi rice, but it takes a lot of learning to master the skill of Nigiri sushi making. First, sushi rice is mixed with vinegar to make vinegared rice. Each standard Nigiri sushi should come in a bite-size piece with fresh sashimi, vegetables, many modern hotpot restaurants now offer sashimi as an appetiser. For meat ingredients, they will select black pork and Wagyu beef, demonstrating how Japanese cuisine is changing our culinary culture.” Sake, perfect with Japanese cuisine When it comes to pairing wine with Japanese cuisine, sake is Perry's favourite. “The selection of sake should match the occasion and the season. Drinking a bottle of iced sake in summer will certainly keep you cool and refreshed; but in winter, it is better to choose hot sake.” eggs or pickles on top. It must be eaten in one bite so that the food will overflow in your mouth. If you want to taste premium Nigiri sushi, the best choice is to have it made by a Japanese sushi chef. “In Hong Kong, we have many restaurants with Japanese sushi master chefs. This is hard to come by because the salary of a Japanese master chef is high and it is not easy to invite them to leave their home country to work in Hong Kong,” he said. Perry thinks that people's pursuit of Japanese delicacies has also affected their dietary habits. “Take hotpot, for example, Wine is another option. “Japanese dishes mainly use seafood as ingredients, so both white wine and champagne which have higher acidity are good choices. As for Japanese dishes with richer flavour, such as Wagyu beef, teppanyaki and tempura, you should select a bottle of full bodied and viscous red wine,” he said. Special Thanks: Sushi Hiro 34 35 P.53 30 P.55 40 P.50 15 Perry Mak Amazing Asian Cuisines Sushi Hiro Kohada Sushi HK$30/piece The Hong Kong people’s love for Japanese cuisine has something to do with their adoration of Japanese culture. Perry Mak Perry Mak is the publisher of Hong Kong Economic Times Holdings Limited. He loves travel and enjoys delicacies and great wine. He is a newspaper and magazine food columnist. Japanese Cuisine is a Hong Kong Favourite Sushi Hiro Assorted Sushi from HK$20/piece The premium seafood is freshly imported from Japan. The best seats in a sushi restaurant are at the bar. Leave your choice to the sushi master (in Japan, it is called Omakase-style). The sushi master will offer the best ingredients of the day. Although it is a bit pricey, you can expect an innovative and surprising selection of the highest quality. Perry Mak's TIPS The Food Critics’ Guide to the Great Tastes of Hong Kong
  20. 20. William Mark's CHOICES Shang Palace Sliced Lobster Dumpling in Pumpkin Soup HK$48 (pre-order only) The fresh lobster is chewier than the traditional shrimp filling. The pumpkin soup base is smooth and flavourful. West Villa Restaurant Oyster Sauce Roast Pork Steamed Bun HK$22 The bun is soft and fluffy, filled with honey glazed barbecue pork. P.53 33 Forum Restaurant Deep Fried Prawn Dumpling with Salad Dressing HK$42 The fresh and tender prawns are wrapped inside a thin pastry. P.52 27 P.56 46 ‘Yum Cha’ (serving dim sum dishes with Chinese tea) in Chinese restaurants is a favourite pastime of many Hong Kong people, and dim sum is the undeniable star of the dining table. Talking about ‘Yum Cha’ in Chinese restaurants, you will see Har Gow (Shrimp Dumplings), Shao Mai (Pork and Mushroom Dumplings) and Cha Siu Baau (Barbecue Pork Buns). Mr. Mark calls them “the three jewels of dim sum”. Shrimp Dumplings, Shao Mai and Barbecue Pork Buns are the ‘signature dim sum dishes’ Cantonese people do not like oily foods, especially before noon. This is the reason for the popularity of these three dim sum items. Chinese dim sum first appeared in northern China and started out with three simple categories: buns, dumplings and noodles – until this delicacy reached the south. In the hands of dim sum masters in southern China, they had evolved into a combination of ‘snacks and dishes’, such as Steamed Boneless Chicken Wrapped with Fish Maw, Pork Shao Mai and Beef Balls. Since dim sum in Hong Kong has adopted the Guangzhou-style, it also has a great variety of these delicacies including buns, dumplings, rolls, slices, cakes, cookies or pies, stuffed ‘boxes’ and pastries. do that with dim sum, especially for Spring Rolls, the best pick would be Champagne.” Try a broad spectrum to find surprises If you are visiting Hong Kong and want to try dim sum, Mr. Mark suggests visitors try a broad range of these Hong Kong favourites. The wide variety of styles originates from the innovative spirit of Hong Kong.” Today, ingredients such as lobster, ginseng and bird's nest are used to make dim sum. An example is the Sliced Lobster Dumplings in Pumpkin Soup. “It is not only sumptuous, but the use of pumpkin also integrates with the modern healthy eating style. Another example would be Steamed Shrimp and Fresh Ginseng Dumplings. Ginseng is added to the shrimp dumplings, and as a creative twist. Steamed Bird's Nest and Crabmeat Dumplings resembles the shape of miniature crabs. He says, “These dim sum dishes, with clear and vivid images, are the icing on the cake.” William thinks the best thing about Hong Kong cuisine is its ‘East meet West’ (fusion) innovation. This does not mean Hong Kong cuisine is anything complicated or westernised. “Regardless of the origin, cuisines are certainly boosted to an excellent level in Hong Kong to satisfy the taste buds of everyone,” he adds. Spring rolls are Mr. Mark's favourite dim sum. “Hong Kong adds a great variation to their spring rolls. You can have shredded chicken and yellow chives, shredded pork and bean sprouts or even shredded beef as the filling. It goes well with a cup of strong tea, especially for sweet dim sum, since the slight bitterness of tea reduces the sweetness and fatty taste in them,” he said. Tea is the best compliment for dim sum. How about wine? Mr. Mark says, “Recently, it's been a hit to serve Chinese dishes with quality wine. To 36 37 Special Thanks: Shang Palace, Kowloon Shangri-La Hotel William Mark Dim Sum Delicacies To match wine with dim sum, especially for Spring Rolls, the best pick would be Champagne. William Mark's TIPS Shang Palace Steamed Shrimp and Fresh Ginseng Dumplings HK$36/two pieces (pre-order only) Shang Palace Steamed bird's nest and crabmeat dumplings HK$68/two pieces (pre-order only) Dim Sum Brings Tradition and Innovation Together Cantonese people do not like oily foods, especially before noon. This is the reason for the popularity of these three dim sum items, shrimp dumplings, Shao Mai and barbecue pork buns. William Mark A renowned food and wine critic in Hong Kong, he has been actively taking part in the culinary field for several decades. He has served many times as a judge in the Hong Kong ‘Best of the Best Culinary Awards’, and has an excellent understanding of traditional dishes. He also wrote food books, such as recently published《唯靈食趣》and《唯靈私房菜》. The Food Critics’ Guide to the Great Tastes of Hong Kong Shang Palace Pan Fried Minced Pork and Goose Liver Paste Dumplings HK$45/three pieces (pre-order only) The goose liver paste brings an extraordinary rich aroma to the dumpling.
  21. 21. Who says ‘gourmet’ dining is limited to a pricey meal that will cost you a fortune? As one of the renowned food critics in Hong Kong, Wai Kee Shun claims to eat out everyday of the year. He believes budget eateries offer unforgettable food. Hakka-style shredded chicken – value for money Wai regards Hakka cuisine as budget gourmet food. Opened more than 50 years in Hong Kong, Chuen Cheung Kui is one of the best Hakka restaurants in town. “There is a Hakka dish called Baked Salty Chicken. Chuen Cheung Kui's Baked Salty Chicken is outstanding,” he said. “The luscious chubby chicken is smooth and tender. The chicken is shredded finely by hand. It is a tedious job. But a standard dish only costs HK$75. It's really worth the price.” Word of mouth is good for business Other than Hakka cuisine, budget restaurants can be found throughout Hong Kong. Another Hong Kong's time-honoured restaurant Tai Ping Koon is famed for its ‘western soy sauce dishes’. Signature dishes include Swiss Chicken Wings, Soy Sauce Pigeon, Stir-fried Beef Rice Noodle and Souffle. Smoked Pomfret is Wai's favourite dish. The restaurant uses fresh Chinese pomfret procedure is complicated, the dish (two pieces per portion) only costs around HK$100. Wai also recommends Tai Woo Restaurant which has won prizes in the "Best of the Best Culinary Awards" a few times. Wai praises the chefs for their excellent control over timing in preparing the steamed fish. A two-person set costs around HK$300. But the restaurant will not sacrifice quality for price. Wild fish such as sole and star grouper are used which are more succulent and tender than farmed fish. The seafood there can satisfy any sophisticated palate. that weighs at least 4 to 5 catties (i.e.2-2.5 kilogrammes) to prepare the Smoked Pomfret dish. It is a difficult recipe as the c h o p p e d f i s h i s marinated in Swiss sauce for six hours before it is put into a smoking oven. The fish is smoked over Ceylon black tea from Sri Lanka to enhance the aroma. Although t h e c o o k i n g Chuen Cheung Kui Fried Bean Curd Stuffed with Minced Pork HK$58 The smooth tofu and supple minced meat creates a flavoursome dish. Tai Woo Restaurant Imperial-Style Steamed Sole Seasonal price (around HK$260/catty) The wild sole is succulent with seafood freshness, while the meat has a slightly chewy texture. Tai Ping Koon Café Smoked Pomfret HK$178 When served, the pomfret is a sparkling, lustrous reddish brown. The fish is accentuated by the saltiness of the soy sauce. Food and wine pairing to suit your needs An old Chinese poem says, “Good grape wine in a luminous jade cup”. Wai said the poem showed that wine drinking was a long-standing tradition in China. “Drinking wine with food can help digestion. I love mixing Wujiapi (五加皮, a Chinese distilled alcoholic beverage) with Seven-up. The sweet drink looks wonderful and goes well with Chinese cuisine. The pairing creates an astonishing sensation.” 38 39 Special Thanks: Chuen Cheung Kui Enjoy Fine But Affordable Food! Chuen Cheung Kui Double Meat Balls Soup HK$50 Cuttlefish balls and beef balls add a burst of sweetness to the soup which goes perfectly with rice. P.52 24 P.57 51 P.57 52 Wai Kee Shun Gourmet Food on a Budget No matter if you are a local or a visitor, their waiters will treat everyone alike and take good care of the guests. Wai Kee Shun As a renowned food critic in Hong Kong, Wai Kee Shun is the life president of the Association for Hong Kong Catering Services Management. He writes food columns for various newspapers and was the Head Judge for ‘Best of the Best Culinary Awards’. Chuen Cheung Kui Baked Salty Chicken HK$99/half, $198/whole The hand-shredded Salt Baked Chicken is plump and juicy. Chuen Cheung Kui Stewed Preserved Vegetable and Pork HK$68 The pork is luscious but not overly greasy, giving out a fragrant taste of the sweet mustard greens. You can ask the restaurant to shred the Salt Baked Chicken for you. The meat will taste better. Otherwise, the chicken is served in pieces. Wai Kee Shun's TIPS The Food Critics’ Guide to the Great Tastes of Hong Kong Wai Kee Shun's CHOICES
  22. 22. Eric Wong's CHOICES At the western dining table where wine is the quintessential drink, the art of food and wine pairing is also de rigeur in epicurean culture. Today, Hong Kong is the only duty-free city for wine within Asia's major economic region. That makes it the perfect place to enjoy a drink. Follow your heart to the art wine pairing Eric Wong, a thirty-year veteran wine critic, is particularly good at wine and food pairing. “Wine is indeed a pleasure of life,” said Eric, “so you have to follow your own liking when it comes to pairing food and wine, as long as the tastes don't get twisted. “On a couple's night out for dinner, a bottle of simple table wine, such as a light Burgundy, would be good enough to share, whatever the choice of meat,” he said. Higher class of connoisseur On a different note, wine tasting is also an art in itself. For the aficionado, one bottle per meal just won't do the trick; it would take a glass per course to hit the pleasure Sabatini Ossobuco with Saffron Risotto HK$388 Wine pairing: Pinot Grigio, Jermann, 2005 La Brasserie Salmon and Scallop (with Sea Urchin Sauce) with Mashed Potatoes HK$268 Wine pairing: Sancerre La Merisiere, Jean Pabiot 2007 Caprice Warm-fried Green Asparagus with Salmon Mousse, Blini with Sour Cream and Caviar HK$370 (pre-oder only) Wine pairing: De Sousa Blanc de Blancs, 1996 40 41 threshold. These days, they can treat themselves to wine dinners in hotels and high-end restaurants around town, with exquisite line-ups of dishes by master chefs along with hand- picked matching wines. During a western-style wine dinner, a sommelier will be present to share with guests the art of wine tasting. As the menu runs from appetiser to dessert, each course comes with a different wine. “The flow goes from a relatively intense red wine to the finale of a sweet dessert wine,” Eric remarked. A sweet beginning For beginners, Eric's word of advice is to “take it slowly, starting from the fruity and sweeter variety. “It's the phenol elements of the tannins that merge with the saliva to generate a bitter taste,” said Eric. “So, if you pick heavy tannins to begin with, the milder ones will be hard to taste.” When diner's heaven meets wine's haven When it comes to food and wine matching in Hong Kong, Eric described them as “made-in-heaven”. “On the other hand, not everyone knows their way around, in mixing and matching, so your safe bet is pairing wine and food from the same region, for instance, Italian wine with Italian cuisine,” Eric said. Yet another foolproof way is to consult the sommelier, if there is one, or else the bartender. If this doesn't work out either, your last resort is to go for the house wines. “They are usually recommended as good matches with most items on the menu. Apart from ordering wines at the restaurant, you could also bring your own wine. “There are many wine retailers and supermarkets carrying wines that cost anywhere from less than HK$100 to over $1,000,” said Eric. “The choice is always yours.” Special Thanks: Sabatini, Royal Garden Hotel P.56 48 P.48 02 P.57 50 Sabatini Parma Ham with Melon HK$258 The Italian Parma Ham has a rich taste yet not too salty. The sweet melon nicely sets off the fatty aroma of the ham. Wine pairing: Pinot Grigio Eric Wong Western Cuisine and Wine Finding the Right Wine for Western-Style Food Sabatini Seafood Linguine in Tomato Sauce HK$348 The homemade pasta is al dente; the refreshing tomato adds a tangy flavour to the seafood. Yummy! Wine pairing: Siepi, Mazzei, 2004 During a western-style wine dinner, the flow goes from a relatively intense red wine to the finale of a sweet dessert wine. Eric Wong Famous wine critic and food columnist; currently a member of Chaîne des Rôtisseurs, Honorary Chairman of Ordre International des Disciples d'Auguste Escoffier, Honorable Consultant of Hong Kong Bartenders Association and Honorable Consultant of Federation of Hong Kong Restaurant Owners. Please consult the sommelier for food and wine pairing advice. If the restaurant does not have a sommelier, you could ask the wine waiter or pick the house wine. Eric Wong's TIPS The Food Critics’ Guide to the Great Tastes of Hong Kong
  23. 23. Yeung Koon Yat Classy Dishes Yeung Koon Yat's CHOICES Forum Restaurant Forum Crispy Chicken HK$380 The fresh chicken boosts the flavour and texture of the roast, which is juicy inside and crispy outside. Itacho Sushi Salmon Sushi HK$3/piece (Promotional price) Each rice piece is hand-made by the chef. Combined with the sliced raw salmon, the sushi can please the finickiest eater. Gaddi's Pan-fried Goose Liver Salad with Green Apples, Hazelnuts and Black Truffle Sauce HK$380 The rich fragrance of the foie gras is further lifted by the Mache salad and wine-poached green apples. P.52 27 P.56 45 P.56 47 Known as the four sumptuous Chinese seafood specialities, abalone, sea cucumber, shark's fin, and fish maw are essentials in a Chinese banquet. Among the four ingredients, abalone is considered the finest. When one thinks of abalone, Mr. Yeung Koon Yat, Hong Kong's celebrity chef, immediately comes to mind. Over thirty years ago, he made use of a charcoal stove and a casserole to create his most well known dish, Syrupy-heart Abalone. Royalties and government officials across the world visiting Hong Kong seek to savour his signature dish. Abalone is more precious than gold “Abalone, sea cucumber, shark's fin, and fish maw are essential dishes in a Chinese banquet, as they give the host a sense of prestige. But a true gourmet will choose abalone,” said Mr. Yeung, widely known as ‘Brother Yat’ in Hong Kong. “No other food can match abalone in its value. Due to air and water pollution, it is difficult to find superior abalone. With the export ban in South Africa, Amidori abalone supply is becoming rarer and rarer each day. Its value is more precious than gold.” Which one is the most delicious? “Japanese dried abalone is surely the best!” he said. “Although many countries such as Australia, South Africa, Japan, China, and Indonesia offer various types of abalone, Japanese dried abalone is most distinguished and tasty.” His first choice is Ohu abalone from the Aomori Prefecture in Japan. Savour the taste of sliced Amidori abalone To prepare an enticing abalone dish, Mr. Yeung pointed out that quality is the key. Supreme Japanese dried abalone will guarantee to set your mouth watering. Slicing open an abalone, its heart reveals a shiny brownish-red colour that resembles the colour of lotus seed paste. This is the ‘Syrupy-heart Abalone’ which refers to the viscous, tender and chewy texture that slightly sticks to your teeth. Mr. Yeung said that when serving abalone, it should be sliced vertically so that it remains smooth and inviting. “You have to enjoy the abalone in small bites.” Wine adds glamour to the meal Apart from abalone, he is also innovative in cooking other luxury ingredients. To give you an example, his ‘Stir-fried Lobster with Bird's Nest’ features both lobster and generous helpings of the pricey bird's nest. Bird's nest is used to show prestige and give a delightful crunch to the lobsters, increasing the dish's freshness. “Abalone and ‘Stir-fried Lobster with Bird's Nest’ can go with red and white wine. The wine will not only enhance the flavours, but also add a glamorous touch to the banquet,” says Mr. Yeung with a smile. Special Thanks: Forum Restaurant Forum Restaurant Braised Amidori Abalone (‘six-headed’) HK$9,200 each Forum Restaurant Stir-fried Lobster with Bird's Nest HK$800/person (pre-order only) The Lobster is stir-fried with scrambled egg white giving the dish a smooth and crunchy texture. 42 43 ‘Abalone King’ Offers Deluxe Dining Experience Abalone, sea cucumber, shark's fin soup, and fish maw are essential dishes in a Chinese banquet, as they give the host a sense of prestige. Yeung Koon Yat Internationally acclaimed and Hong Kong's most celebrated chef, he started to learn the craft when he was 16. In the past few decades, he has been an icon of the Hong Kong culinary circle. His signature dish ‘Ah Yat Abalone’ has earned him the title of ‘Cooking Master of the World’, the first Chinese ever to claim the title. Fortune and luck is a big theme in a Chinese banquet. In a wedding banquet, red bean sweet soup is served to symbolize sweetness and happiness. Multiple courses will be served, starting with two hot meat dishes, followed by shark-fin soup, abalone, chicken or roasted baby pig. Soup and sweet soup come last. From mild dishes to strong- flavoured dishes, an authentic Chinese banquet is artfully presented. Yeung Koon Yat's TIPS The Food Critics’ Guide to the Great Tastes of Hong Kong