November 4, 2017

Old Hong Kong Kitchen, Singapore…deeply unlovable

Old Hong Kong Kitchen owners, have you eaten at your restaurant in Novena Square 2? Did you eat the dim sum? Did it live up to your expectations? When you hung that sign by the entrance that says, voted top 5 dim sum restaurants in Singapore, were you just messing with our heads? How did the rest of the food turn out so deeply unlovable? Does this make it sound as if everything at Old Hong Kong Kitchen is inedible? I didn’t say that, did I?

The siew mai – forget it. The fried stuff were oil-soaked yet not very crispy. I don’t know how this place survives. I don’t care about the decor, I want my food. The prices were too expensive for what it was.

This restaurant has probably the worst dim sum I have ever eaten in Singapore. This is the true truth as I say it as it is…

old hk kitchen sin



May 21, 2017

Va Fung, Macau…it’s surprisingly affordable and lip-tinglingly good

Dim Sum is arguably one of Cantonese cuisine’s finest contributions to the world. It’s one of the few types of foods I can eat repeatedly without tiring of it, because of its endless variety.

Don’t be put off by the nondescript appearance of Va Fung, this Macau number prepares Cantonese- food fit for a banquet and it’s surprisingly affordable. If you have a big group, this is the place to come. All the classics are done very well here — prawn dumplings (ha gau), siew mai and Cheong Fun with shrimps and char siu – and quite a number of the items are really lip-tinglingly good.

What more could you need? This is the true truth as I say it as it is…

va fung macau2

va fung macau1


December 6, 2015

Lot 10 Hutong Food Gallery, The Shore, Melaka…my most expensive food court meal of the year

Lot 10 Hutong Food Gallery is a food court which comprises different well-known food stalls. This Melaka outpost of the famed Kuala Lumpur eatery is a major dud. The prices are unconscionable. They are ludicrous, a poke in the eye from a chopstick dipped in salty Korean chilli sauce.

Here’s the chronicles of a lunch gone very wrong. The “thick and bland” Xiao long bao and har kow which flavour is akin to that of an overcooked McDonald’s chicken nuggets. The cost of the micro-mini siew mai, har kow and Xiao long bao is RM25. Meanwhile the very sour glass of RM10.50 apple juice would be a find…in a vending machine. This very expensive glass of apple juice has the honour of being the worst thing I have put in my mouth since the incident with the washing liquid when I was seven.

This food court is only affordable if you wear underwear lined in baby panda fur on a daily basis. Ultimately, this place is just “terribly, terribly sad”, “wallet-lightening” and a new kill-me-now low. This is the true truth as I say it as it is…

lot 10 hutong melaka 1

August 4, 2013

Tim Ho Wan, Hong Kong…If I lived here, I would eat this everyday

When I was done with lunch at around 12.45pm, people were queuing to get a seat in this tiny restaurant at Northpoint where diners – a mix of Hong Kong families, elderly friends, and the odd solo diner – cram elbow-to-elbow. Michelin gave it a star in 2010, netting it the auspicious title of cheapest Michelin-starred restaurant in the world. In this simple, no-frills eatery with minimum service and fuss, simply sit at your table and choose what you want by ticking the options on a sheet of paper, and let the staff do the rest.

It’s definitely worth braving the queue for the outstanding baked bun with BBQ pork (cha siu bao).  They are usually served steamed but, here, they are baked: the slightly crisp sugar glaze around the crumbling crispy pastry bun contrasting with a savoury gentle stew of pillow-soft meat chunks swaddled in slightly sweet sauce inside. The perfectly steamed rich and plump pork dumpling with shrimp (siew mai) were piping hot and so, so, so good. The chewy bouncy vermicelli roll stuffed with fleshy shrimp (cheong fun) were excellent too. Doused with a sweet soy sauce, I loved this dish.

The dim sum here is the best in its class: simple, fresh and generally light on grease. If I lived here, I would eat this everyday. This is the true truth as I say it as it is…

baked buns with bbq pork - tim ho wan

cheong fun - tim ho wan

siew mai - tim ho wan


October 26, 2011

Hing Fat Restaurant, Hong Kong…I get hungry just thinking about this “cha chaan teng” (Chinese tea diner)

Dining in a Cha Chaan Teng is listed as one’s top 10 things to do in Hong Kong. I have returned to this this simple no-nonsense Cha Chaan Teng often. Food arrives fresh and warm. I am served well and ably within a reasonable amount of time.

Its mouthwatering menu of Chinese cuisine serves classic favorites such as Char leong (yau char kuey in chee cheong fun skin), Cheong Fun (steamed rice roll with shrimp), Siew Mai and steam turnip cake. You’ve probably figured out by now that this place is not serving up fine cuisine but comfort food, but nevertheless, I get hungry just thinking about those dishes.

You can’t consider yourself to have experienced Hong Kong until you step into a such a Cha Chaan Teng and experienced the ambience and buzz in the eatery – the brusque service, the fast-in-fast-out turnover of the place, and the noisy atmosphere and general busy-ness of the place. This is the true truth as I say it as it is…

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