Ho Lee Fook, Central, Hong Kong
I have been waiting impatiently for Ho Lee Fook to open, one because the chef whom I have a lot of respect for is Chef Jowett Yu. As some of you may know, he worked along side Dan Hong (another chef whom I have absolute respect for) in Ms G’s and Mr Wong in Sydney both are my favourite restaurants. I can’t count the number of times I have been to Ms G’s and I have a feeling that Ho Lee Fook will be one of the restaurants I keep coming back too!
Ho Lee Fook (aka ‘good fortune for your mouth’) serves diners Jowett’s signature ‘east meets west’ dishes. I know Jowett’s going to hate me for saying this, but I can see a little bit of Ms G’s style and I am not complaining as I LOVED Ms G’s but it does have Jowett’s own twist and one of my dining companion actually said that it was BETTER than Ms G’s! The menu is split into 6 sections – to start, raw, vegetables, roast meats, not a small plate and desserts.
Started with the Mum’s ‘mostly cabbage, a little bit of pork’ dumplings, sacha soy dressing. Delicious, moreish pork dumplings with a hint of chili. Even Dragon managed to demolish a couple of these babies.
The wagyu steak tartare, Yunnan style, hot and sour, herbs had a wonderful flavour and crunch to it. It was fresh and the flavours were outstanding.
Dragon really enjoyed the fried chicken mid wings with shrimp sambal (without the sambal of course) – the skin was crispy and the meat itself was tender and succulent.
There were so many wonderful choices that we wanted to try everything. We opt for the grilled pork belly, red cabbage salad, roasted chili and almond salsa – beautifully cooked pork belly, it had the right amount of fat and meat ratio and was incredibly succulent that it melted in your mouth. The red cabbage salsa had a lovely sour tang to it which was a wonderful addition.
My favourite of the evening, the roast Wagyu short ribs, jalapeño puree, green shallot kimchi, soy glaze – OH MY GOODNESS! AMAZING!!! The short ribs were cooked to perfection, so tender, and the jalapeño puree was just to die for. This was definitely the highlight dish for me. If they were opened for lunch, I would come in on my own and have this – just for me.
We also ordered the Taiwanese style Lu Rou Fan, 5 grain rice, pickled daikon and it was excellent. I don’t usually like grainy rice because of its texture but this was surprisingly tasty! We also ordered a serving of stir-fried asparagus, broccoli, sugar snap peas, garlic, shoaxing sauce – simple right? All the ingredients were fresh and it was delicious.
For dessert, we thought we would share a couple of things, first the matcha sponge cake, chocolate ganache, hazelnut praline and strawberries. The matcha sponge cake was light and the chocolate ganache was gooey and oh so chocolatey!
The granny smith apple granita, calpis sorbet, mochi and kohi jelly was my favourite out of the two. It was light and refreshing, the mochi was out of this world yummy and the calpis sorbet really gave it that extra flavouring.
Service was excellent, food was fantastic. I am so glad that this has finally opened in Hong Kong. I am no food critique but Ho Le Fook is definitely a wonderful addition to the Hong Kong restaurant scenes. I have a lot of respect for Jowett, and I can’t wait to go back and try their other dishes!
Unfortunately, there is a no reservation policy, we we were there at 6.30 pm and had no trouble getting a table. Mind you it was Sunday evening and it was the first week of opening. If you are wondering if its child friendly? There were 3 tables with kids, it is a little dark and the music can be a bit loud but Dragon definitely enjoyed the food and didn’t mind the music at all!
GA’s ratings: 8.5 / 10
Ho Lee Fook
G/F, 1 Elgin Street