Posts Tagged ‘Hong Kong’
Hong Kong is a perfect city for short term business trip or vacation. Its multiple neighborhoods and islands offer different culture experience – some more trendy and some more traditional. You can sample this city out in bits and parts over multiple trips. Here is our recommendation based on our leisurely experience during a short stay in Central district.
Maxim’s outpost in Hong Kong – indubitably.
This Hong Kong trip had been a bit of a disappointment in terms of food – I was expecting greatness at every meal but it ended up being a mixed one. The congee breakfasts were exceptional. Fried rice at the traditional Luk Yu Tea House was good. Lunch at the casual Kyoto Joe’s was below par. The 16 course dinner at the Yellow Door private kitchen was a complete disappointment. The fried noodles at Crystal Jade, famous for their hand pulled noodles, were greasy. So, when the 36 hour sojourn at Hong Kong came to an end, I was beginning to wonder if I was going to come back to this city again.
Restaurant: Yellow Door Kitchen
Location: Hong Kong Central
Cuisine: Sichuanese and Shanghai style food with 16 course prix fixe menu
Cost: $288 HKG per person (~$40 USD)
We had asked our concierge (@Lan Kwai Fong) to book us at Da Ping Huo Private Kitchen but they were booked full. So our concierge suggested Yellow Door Kitchen – a tiny little restaurant on the fourth floor on Cochrane lane, underneath the mid-level escalator. A little research suggested that it was started by Hong Kong gastronome Lau Kin-Wai who started Da Ping Huo as well. Yellow Door is the first private kitchen started in the late ’90s, now run by Kin-Wai’s son, and apparently draws loyalists like movie mogul Run Run Shaw, and the hot and talented Mr. Andy Lau. So, it had seemed like an excellent choice.
Yet another must do on a visit to Hong Kong is a star ferry ride across the channel from Central to Kowloon - pronounced the native way, Kowloon has a nice rounded sound – like “cow-loong”. They say that on a clear day, from a vantage point, one can see as far away as the mainland china. However, on a winter day, it is impossible to see Kowloon skyline from Central or vice versa. So why do this ride at all? Apart from the fact that for many of us a ferry ride is unusual and therefore exciting, it is the cheapest thing one can do in Hong Kong – at $2 HKG per ride, it is cheaper than price of a dimsum plate at a street vendor.
Mid-town escalator – a visitor to Hong Kong is expected to get on it. I wish I could say that taking the escalator meant not walking. The world’s longest escalator is really for the working man – it ferries them from home to the financial hub in the morning. After mid-morning, it switches direction and starts going back up to the hills again. So, if you are a visitor, you can either go up or down the escalator and you will have to leg it the other way. If you are an average visitor, you will likely be staying close to the Central’s shopping district and therefore would be going up the escalator and coming down the stairs.
I am a coffee and cereal gal but a breakfast in Hong Kong can’t be any other than congee. Although the idea of a savoury porridge in the morning has always been an odd one to me, I had decided to step into Hong Kong for a 36 hour stopover with a firm resolve to try congee. Essence of congee is a tasty broth in which rice is cooked into a light slurry to which bits and pieces of fish, eggs and meat are added.
Here I was again, stuck at yet another airport in the middle of a San Francisco-Delhi trip. My last long layover was a twelve hour one at Bangkok when I had managed to sneak away to the city. I had the urge to get away again – in a decade of hopping between San Francisco and Delhi, I had never had six hour layover at HKG before.