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Thursday, November 17, 2011

Hong Kong Smorgasbord

Went to a 3 day Shopping and Food trip Adventure in Hong Kong courtesy of The Hongkong and Shanghai Bank!  (Used the credit card to avail of a free round trip ticket to Hong Kong via Cathay Pacific!).  While everyone came ready to shop, not much research and preparation was done for the food tripping part.  Here's a not so comprehensive guide to Hong Kong's food scene.

From our hotel at Tin Hau station, we wanted to go to Times Square in search for Lei Garden Restaurant which was highly recommended by a friend.  Upon asking a local, he pointed us to LEE GARDENS TOWER!  So we had no choice but to make a quick stop at the West Villa Restaurant (西苑酒家) located inside Lee Gardens Tower 2.  

West Villa Restaurant Hong Kong
While it wasn't our intended destination, everyone came out full and satisfied with the dishes served at this restaurant.  Voted favorites were the Pork Xiao Mai, Chicken Feet, Hakao, and the crunchy vegetable.  The Chinese are really great vegetable farmers.  Whether you're in Beijing or Hong Kong, the vegetables are always so plump, green, fresh, and crunchy!  We aslo ordered the Spicy Beef Stew with Enoki mushrooms.  While the flavors were good, the broth was too spicy for our Filipino tastes buds.  Lesson learned: never order anything with Spicy on the label!  


West Villa Restaurant (西苑酒家)
Room 101-102, 1/F., Lee Garden Phase 2, 28 Yan Ping Road, Causeway Bay
銅鑼灣恩平道28號利園2期1樓101-102號舖
Tel: 2882 2110


When everyone got tired of walking and shopping the whole day, we finally headed to Times Square in search for the real Lei Garden Restaurant.  Just from looking at the restaurant's facade you would know that this restaurant means business.  And luckily the food tasted as good as their set up.  Voted favorites were THE PEKING DUCK (served 2 ways), Crab Meat Xiao Long Pao (40 HKD a piece!), and Yang Chow Fried Rice!  

We wanted to order a Tofu dish but the one who took our order didn't seem to understand or the restaurant simply might not have a tofu dish on the menu  - the guy suggested we order this hot pot with tofu.  He skipped the part that it was mostly fish and that it contained only morsels of tofu! (or it could have been the language barrier as well).  When the bill arrived, I realized why he had a coy smile on his face when we agreed to his suggestion.  The fish dish was so expensive!  It was priced the same as one whole suckling pig here in the Philippines (2,000 pesos  345 HKD)!  Another lesson learned: Never order live seafood dish! (And it wasn't really that special anyway)     

Times Square Lei Garder Restaurant

Address:Shop 1003, 10/F Times Square, Causeway Bay
Tel:(852) 2506 3828

www.leigarden.hk


Other Branches:
International Finance Center (Central, HK)
Times Square (Causeway Bay)
 CNT Tower (Hennessy Road, Wanchai)
North Point HK


It was already late when we headed for Lan Kwai Fong and most restaurants were closing down.  Luckily, Va Bene was still open.  This time we settled for Italian food as we were very hungry already and there were no other good restaurants in site.  The Spinach and Cheese Cannelloni was a delightful treat.  Although the Calamari looked very enticing, it wasn't a big hit.  The pizza was good with a very light and crispy crust.  In this place, you'd have to love the ambiance.  

I don't think I'd go back to Lan Kwai Fong on an empty stomach.  Eat first before heading to this area. (^o^)/  I did see a Gourmet Burger station.  Next time I'm there, I'd definitely try one.

Va Bene
17-22 Lan Kwai Fong Central Hong Kong
Tel: 2845-5577
www.vabeneristorante.com

Drooling about burgers made me remember the last time I was at The Ocean Terminal Harbour City at Tsim Tsa Tsui.  We ordered a 7 oz. Angus Beef Burger at BLT Burger.  This is totally an American burger.  While it's not Chinese, the only way you can try these is if you go to their other stores in New York and Las Vegas.  So in Asia, Hong Kong would be the nearest destination to enjoy these juicy and mouth watering burgers! 


BLT BURGER
Shop 301, Level 3
Ocean Terminal, Harbour City
Tsim Sha Tsui, Hong Kong
Tel: (852) 2730 2338
www.bltburger.com


We had our Angus burger with these spicy Buffalo Wings! American classics that are perfect intermissions in between Chinese cuisines.


When all shopping was done, we ate at Crystal Jade La Mian Xiao Long Pao Restaurant.  After all the lessons we've learned on this trip, we finally got to enjoy every dish we ordered!  All the dishes above were a big hit!  Clockwise: Tofu Spring Rolls, Fried rice, Shrimp in Salted Egg Yolks, Stir-fried Beans with minced pork, Pork Xiao Long Pao, and Roasted Pigeon!  Yah-mee!  It was the perfect meal to cap our 3 day shopping and food marathon.

Crystal Jade La Mian Xiao Long Bao Restaurant 
Gateway Arcade - Harbour City  Tel: (852) 2622 2699
Times Square - Causeway Bay Tel: (852) 2506 0080
New Town Plaza - Phase I  Tel: (852) 2699 9811
Telford Plaza I  Tel: (852) 2305 9990
IFC Mall Level 2  Tel: (852) 2295 3811
World Trade Center  Tel: (852) 2915 6988
Tai Yau Plaza  Tel: (852) 2573 8844
www.crystaljade.com/hongkong.htm

While we didn't go for it this time around, your Hong Kong food trip wouldn't probably be complete without eating the world famous Yung Kee Roast Goose!  Dip it in two lovely sauces: Gravy or Sweet Plum Sauce.


Get this at:

Yung Kee Restaurant 
32-40 Wellington St., Central Hong Kong
Tel: (852) 2522 1624
www.yungkee.com.hk

Call in advance and place your reservations as the restaurant is almost always full.  Or order it to bring back home to your country so you can share it with your family and friends!    
  
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