Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Night at a Beer Brewery

I rushed off from office on a Friday evening to catch a bus to the industrial district of Fo Tan up north for a guided tour of the new Hitachino Nest Brewery facility. Over the past few years, the growing trend of boutique craft beers have finally reached Hong Kong. It’s now much common for bars and restaurants to offer a wide selection of beers from around the world with some high quality but lesser known brands, and a handful of local breweries set up here in the city. Some friends even started to brew at home, keeping a container or two  inside their cupboard or wardrobe.

Sunday, August 28, 2016

Chef Couple Takes Over: Bo.lan in Hong Kong

I almost lost track of how many "pop-up dinners" I have attended this summer, with so many visiting chefs making whistle stops in town offering one-off menu at various locations from restaurants to bars to specialty kitchen studios.

Friday, August 26, 2016

Cooking Experiment #4: Roca Brothers and My Sweet Imitation

Taking the week off from work meant I could go to events that I normally couldn't go. A couple weeks ago chefs Joan and Jordi Roca from El Celler de Can Roca in Girona, Spain were in town for a private dinner event and on one of the afternoons, they delivered a cooking masterclass to a small audience. It's been such a privilege to be invited to join.

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Meet Samsen, Adam's New Noodle Place

We were at Chef Adam's last day at Chachawan late last year so I thought it's just appropriate (with a sense of completing a mission) that we came to his new place on their first day of their official opening, some 8 months later since he took off with new plans of flying solo with his own restaurant.

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Harlan Version 5.0

Since the beginning of summer, it's hard to miss the giant hoarding on Lyndhurst Terrace with the larger-than-life face of Chef Harlan showing prominently outside the street level storefront. With a slew of press material beginning to fly into my email inbox a couple of weeks ago, now we knew he has re-established the latest iteration of his restaurant concepts on this site with a few openings in a rather short span, all in drastically different themes located on different levels of the building.

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Dinner with a crowd

My friends and we were at Rhoda one Wednesday evening as the occasion to catch up and also to try out the dishes at this 2-month-old restaurant located on the main street in Sai Ying Pun and a short walk from the HKU MTR Station. This hip restaurant is the newest project by Yenn Wong, who seems to hold true to her current title of "Best Restauranteur of the Year" with a string of new restaurant openings under her belt in the last 12 months. Behind the kitchen is Chef Nate Green, formerly of 22 Ships and Ham and Sherry.

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Cooking Experiment #3: I am Team Steam

"Are you on Team Steam or Team Boil?" a food magazine raised this question in its recent issue about crabs - referring to the "right" way of cooking them. In my adopted home state of Maryland, famous for its crab dishes using Atlantic blue crabs from the nearby Chesapeake Bay, we are firm believers of Team Steam and the question was not even debatable, period.

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Cooking Experiment #2: Learn Pho from the Pro

A few months ago my chef friend Peter showed some of us at the kitchen of his (previous) restaurant the way to do a proper Vietnamese Pho Bo, using a modified recipe which is easier and more practical for home cooks. I have always wanted to try that at home, but never got a chance until this week when I had more time playing around in the kitchen.

Monday, August 15, 2016

Cooking Experiment #1: Potato with a Fancy Name

I decided to take a week off in the middle of summer just to get some rest at home. When we told others about the plan, or rather a "non-plan" of doing nothing, many seemed surprised that we were not travelling anywhere. Well, it’s not exactly a week of “doing nothing”, but I have decided to take this week for some cooking experiments at home.

Saturday, August 13, 2016

Crossover at Test Kitchen

Test Kitchen is an admirable project founded by Vincent, providing an unique and exclusive culinary stage to link up visiting chefs and adventurous diners right in Hong Kong for a series of one-off dinner events regularly held. One particular event caught our eyes recently, featuring the cooking of Chef Victoria Eliasdóttir, an up-and-coming young chef from Dottir Restaurant in Berlin.

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Caprice in the Summer

One subtle change to the weekend lunch menu at Caprice recently was the expansion of their set menu with additional choices (adding a separate soup section after the appetizers), and a new 4-course option for those wanting a more substantial meal than the usual 2-course or 3-course menu.

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Tai Hang's Second Coming

Compared to Sai Ying Pun or Kennedy Town on the west side, the once trendy neighborhood of Tai Hang has been relatively quiet lately. But that was about to change for a second coming of sorts, with a few new buildings near completion and along with that, new restaurants and bars openings bringing the limelight back to this cozy area with a fine mix of old and new businesses.

Sunday, August 7, 2016

NYC Pop-up: Birds and Bubbles

I was at ISONO at PMQ a few Sundays ago for a special event to preview their summer menu in collaboration with Chef Sarah Simmons of Birds & Bubbles from New York City, featuring some of their signature dishes, including the fried chicken and champagne pairing (hence the name of the restaurant). I enjoyed the food so much that we decided to return a couple Sunday later, this time, to catch up with some friends over brunch.

Saturday, August 6, 2016

Shau Kei Wan Food Crawl

When friends asked me for recommendations for local food, I immediately thought of Shau Kei Wan Main Street East. For locals, or at least people living in this side of town, the neighborhood has long been known as a foodie area, with over 60 different eateries crowded along and near this street stretching 800 meters long in the old township of Shau Kei Wan, which once upon a time was a fishing village in the eastern side of Hong Kong Island.

Friday, August 5, 2016

Young Ginger Roots Part 2: Main Course and Dessert

I half-jokingly told my friends that I have bought so many young ginger roots at the market that maybe I should prepare the whole dinner using that as the major theme. And come to think of that, it’s not a bad idea at all. So after the appetizer of the tomato stuffed with ponzu jelly and young ginger garnish, here’s the main course dish and dessert.

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Dinner with Unexpected Guests

Only when I checked my blog archive did I realize it's been almost 4 months since we had a wonderful dinner at Seasons in Causeway Bay last time - it certainly felt like yesterday, or at least not that long ago. Given the last experience we had it would be hard to say no when they invited us back for a tasting of their new summer menu recently.

Monday, August 1, 2016

Summer Produce: Young Ginger Roots

Ginger root might be available all year long in local wet markets and grocery stores, but you will only see the milder young ginger root (子薑) in early summer, beginning at around the time of Dragon Boat Festival until early August. It’s rather easy to distinguish them – the regular, mature ginger roots are often tougher with dark, thick skins; while the young ginger roots, though in the same size, her thinner and paler, almost translucent skin, looks juicier and more tender, with a pinkish tint towards the tip.