Saturday, April 19, 2014

Giando - Convention Eats

Linguini with shrimp and crabmeat
Looking for good eats around the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre (HKCEC) is a bit like trying to find a good soy sauce in Chinatown. There's lots of soy sauce, just none of them are really worth their salt (literally).

The Centre itself is a bit of a lost cause when it comes to food (if I had to choose, I would go to the cafe in the lobby - at least they have semi-decent sandwiches and drinkable (albeit very milky) coffee - but if you're looking for a proper meal, and the Grand Hyatt is too, well, grand, then you're stuck for choices.

About 3-5 minutes walk from the Grand Hyatt, through the garden and overpass, you'll come to Fenwick Pier and the Fleet Arcade (where I keep hearing you can buy cheap magazines from the US ships that come in, but I've never verified that claim). Inside, where Vero used to be, is Giando, an Italian restaurant opened by ex-Gaia Group exec chef, Gianni Caprioli.

Wednesday, April 09, 2014

Le Salon de Thé de Joël Robuchon - Afternoon Tea So Fancy, Wah

Tiered afternoon tea at Salon de The de Joel Robuchon - so dainty, so fancy, wah
This is a gonna be a pretty short post because there isn't much to report about the JR afternoon tea at the Elements branch. The food is perfectly fine. In fact, it's all very well done, and I rather liked the cranberry scones, although they could be a) a bit larger, b) less dense, and c) warm.

Can I just add that the matte black tiers are chic, but when you remove a moist sandwich or pastry from it, it leaves a greasy smudge. Not so chic. Clearly, the person who designed it has never touched food.

Monday, April 07, 2014

Accidental Cantonese Bak Chor Mee - In The Mood For Noodles

My Cantonese-ified bak chor mee - a vegetarian version with eggplant
So I received in the mail a hefty box of Kang Kang noodles (thanks, Catchon, and no, this is not a sponsored post) and to be honest, I'm not a natural noodle fan. I don't hate them, they're just not the kind of carb I can have all the time, I have to be in the "mood"*. I was going through the box - kway teow, silver needle noodles, Hokkien yellow noodles - nope, nope, nope, not feeling it - and then I saw Hokkien flat noodles and ding! ding! ding! I felt like having 濕炒 (sup chao, or wet-fry. Sounds yuck in English but basically a stir-fry with a heavier "wetter" gravy).

I found some pork mince in my fridge, and pictured a glossy coffee-hued gravy, so I dug out my dried shiitakes, some dried morel crumbs and Mrs. So's mushroom sauce, and oh, vegetarian oyster sauce, which tastes nothing like oyster sauce but more like hyper-concentrated mushrooms with the consistency of oyster sauce. As I was cooking, I found it all a little too savoury, so I added a couple of glugs of dark Chinkiang (Zhenjiang) vinegar and finished it off palm sugar, Chiuchow chilli sauce and black & white pepper.

It was delicious - and I feel weird about saying this about my own cooking, because I'm not exactly a genius cook (which is why I like restaurants... maybe?) and almost immediately after eating it I realised that I was, in fact, subconsciously trying to recreate bak chor mee.

Friday, March 21, 2014

Seventh Son - Cantonese Perfection

Dim sum at Seventh Son is perfection
Cantonese food is what I grew up on, and as I get older, I find myself appreciating it more and more, and having less tolerance for bad versions (am I going to end up one of those grumpy old people?).

I've been to Seventh Son about a dozen times since they opened last year, mostly for lunch (dim sum), but a few times for dinner too, and it has quickly become a firm favourite. There have been so few Chinese openings of note recently and I'm only too happy to have found a new, reliable standby.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Dynasty 8, Macau - Decent Dim Sum

Ham shui gok 鹹水角 at Dynasty 8, Conrad Macau
The title says it all. The dim sum at Dynasty 8 was decent. Out of the six things we had, one was excellent (rice paper rolls with barbecued pork), one was good (flaky chicken pastries), three were ok (har gow, ham shui gok, fried sesame balls with custard), and one was weird (soup dumplings), but ok. There's really no need to read past the jump, but if you must...

Monday, March 17, 2014

The Tasting Room by Galliot, Macau

Smoked egg with black winter truffle at The Tasting Room by Gaillot, Macau
Macau, Asia's try-hard attempt at Las Vegas, has seemed to serve a certain function in Hongkonger's vacationing habits that isn't dissimilar to its American counterpart. It's not the first time I'd been to Macau for hen's nights (that's a bachelorette party, non-Aussies) and big birthday bashes. The latter was the purpose of this trip, and this meal at The Tasting Room, and at the risk of sounding like a spoiled brat, we'd all been to Robuchon and wanted to try something different. Plus, it was about time to test run our expensive handbags on different bag stools... I kid.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Eating in Longyearbyen, Svalbard - The Northernmost Restaurants in the World

Yes, snowshoeing in Longyearbyen made me hungry, but the vast emptiness made me hungrier.
There's a certain hunger that strikes when you're in the Arctic Circle, 78 degrees north of the equator and about 1000km from the nearest decent-sized city (Tromsø). It has nothing to do with grumbles, caloric intake, or styaing warm, rather, it's a hunger brought on by a subtle but unshakable sense of anxiety of being in the middle of absolutely nowhere, and being completely useless in fending for yourself should anything happen.

Thursday, January 02, 2014

Hot Pot at Da Hong Pao

Pic from Da Hong Pao (sorry)
In its simplest form, all you need for hot pot (or steamboat, or Chinese fondue) is stock, or even water, and whatever ingredients you want to (and are able to) cook quickly in soup. It was always something I'd had at home - after all, you can spend less, and buy better ingredients. However, being in Hong Kong, where you can nary do a u-turn in your own apartment, having friends over for hotpot is quite a challenge, let alone having the space to prep everything and spread it all out.