There’s really not a shortage of restaurant in Hysan Place. It has taken me a while to try this restaurant, Dragon and I were shopping one Friday night and we decided to give this place a go, ‘The Mother’ joined us afterwards as he too wanted to try this restaurant. Thankfully we were there early and was seated immediately, the queues at this place is ridiculously long! It’s good but not sure if I would wait 30 40 mins to be seated – but then again that’s me, I just don’t like to queue.
The menu is very similar to Din Tai Fung I thought, Shanghainese food – xiao long bao, pan fried dumplings and noodles – and that is exactly what we ordered. We started with a very refreshing drink – for the life of me I can’t remember what it’s called, apple soda with apple vinegar jelly. The most unsettling thing is the ice cube that flashes when in glass!
We had to order 2 servings of the xiao long bao. Dragon absolutely loved them! Not so much the pork but the skin, she ate 4 of them on her own. The skin I thought was a little thick, I still prefer Din Tai Fung’s which is much thinner.
The noodles Dragon loved, she pretty much ate half of it. It was cooked just the way she liked it and with it was the fried chicken fillet. Unfortunately the chicken fillet was a little dry and tough.
The pan fried dumplings we all loved! The outside of the bun was crispy and inside was bursting with juice. Definitely one of my favourites
We didn’t have any dessert at The Dining Room, I have been craving the Uji Matcha Smoothie from via tokyo and believe me it did not disappoint! Perfect for a hot day, the slushy matcha was just perfect, not too sweet and not too creamy. It certainly went down nicely.
Service and food at The Dining Room was pretty decent, I quite like the layout and the communal dining table. Food was very similar to Din Tai Fung but ‘The Mother’ and I agreed that we both still prefer Din Tai Fung.
GA’s ratings: 6.5 / 10
The Dining Room
Shop 1201, 12/F, Hysan Place,
500 Hennessy Road,
Causeway Bay, Hong Kong
Ph: +852 2648 2299
School Food has been around for a while, there’s always a long queue outside the restaurant and I have always been intrigued. So finally, one lunch time, we decided to give it ago. School Food is a modern Korean restaurant chain that is very popular in Korea (or so I have read but why did I not try it when I was there?!). It takes your traditional Korean food and is re-invented into something more ‘modern’, like Carbonara Tteobokki, fried chicken curry ramen, beef bulgogi mari and many many more.
The menu is definitely interesting! We started with this lovely and refreshing drink – cotton strawberry athie – deliciously sweet smoothie blended with fruits and soda. You could definitely taste the strawberry and on a hot summer day, this was perfect.
We started with the special – three different types of fried chicken served with fries. The chicken wings were my favourite out of the three – wings, thighs and chicken strips. The chicken strips were probably the driest, and the thighs which were slightly spicy were pretty tender and succulent.
The carbonara tteobokki was definitely interesting – in a good way that is. The rice cakes were a little chewier than norm and it was smothered in a rich, creamy carbonara sauce – yum! This would be perfect for winter – winter comfort food!
We couldn’t go past the bbq beef ribs with rice and fried potatoes. The beef ribs were cooked to perfection, incredibly tender and incredibly succulent. It had a nice gravy sauce and full of flavour. The fried potatoes were more like wedges which was a wonderful complement.
I thought the bulgogi quesadilla was a little disappointing. There wasn’t enough beef bulgogi in it! Too much dough and not enough beef, and it needed some guacamole I thought.
Now the mari – which is which is originated from the combined word of Gimbap and roll. We started with the spam II mari which was had a lovely egg layer outside the seaweed and chili and roe. This was surprisingly tasty but I am a sucker for spam!
We also ordered the squid ink mari – this is their signature mari. I have to admit, I wasn’t blown away by it, thought there wasn’t enough squid ink flavour and the squid was a little tough.
Overall I thought the food was interesting, warrants another visit to try their other dishes but not sure if I would wait more than 20 minutes though. Service was pleasant and food came out relatively quickly. Wouldn’t mind trying the fried chicken ramen next time.
GA’s ratings: 7 / 10
Shop 1302, 13/F, Times Square
1 Matheson Street
Ph: +852 2480 3666
I first went to Paradise Dynasty when I was in Singapore – the famous 8 flavours xiao long bao – original, garlic, ginseng, foie gras, black truffle, cheese, crab roe, and Szechuan. Those that are not familiar with Paradise Dynasty, it is quite similar to Din Tai Fung only better in my opinion – menu options are definitely more vast and it has finally opened in Hong Kong, in Lee Theatre in Causeway Bay.
I was beyond excited to try – I have been wanting to have the 8 flavoured xiao long bao for a while now and at the moment, they have a promotion, when you order the 8 flavoured xiao long bao, take a photo and either up load it to Facebook / instagram and you receive a free DURIAN xiao long bao – now don’t knock it until you have tried it! It’s GOOD!
We started with the obvious – the one thing we were here for. Start with the original (the middle xiao long bao), then garlic, eat clock wise and end with the pink – szechuan one. Unfortunately the pink xiao long bao, didn’t turn out to be pink! We wondered if they have given us two of the same colour – but alas – no.. it was right.
Now, to eat the xiao long bao – here’s a little instruction, make a tiny hole, let the juice out into the spoon, dip the bao in vinegar, and put it back on the spoon and eat it together! That way you won’t lose any of the juices!
We ordered some hand made noodles and boiled chicken for Dragon, the noodles she absolutely loved! ‘The Mother’ also enjoyed it.
I have been craving sweet and sour pork – surprisingly this was quite tasty. The pork tender and sauce wasn’t sickly sweet.
‘The Mother’ has been craving Szechuan fish – oh my, it was so red I had sweats dripping down my face. Thankfully you can decide how many chills you want – one, two or three! The fish was delicious and thankfully we only picked one chili which made it bare able!
Now the dessert I have been waiting for – DURIAN xiao long bao! I wasn’t sure what to expect – warm durian? would it be nice – oddly it was and I really enjoyed it. You could smell the durian flavour – ‘The Mother’ who doesn’t like durian was fleeing away already. Dragon on the other hand… couldn’t help but have one or two durian xiao long bao – that’s my girl!
Service was friendly and polite. The restaurant was a lot bigger than I anticipated. We rocked up at 11.35am and there were already people queuing. We didn’t have to wait for long. Food came relatively quickly, except for the durian xiao long bao which took a while but well worth the wait!
Definitely keen to go back, this time with a larger group of people so we can try more things!
GA’s ratings: 8 / 10
Lee Theatre, 6th Floor
Ph: +852 2177 0903
The Chophouse is a new venture by the Woollomoollo group, which can be found on Tung Lung Street in Soundwill Plaza – there’s actually a whole building of new restaurants including Jamie’s which should open in the summer. I had originally thought that The Chop house is from Sydney, but apparently, there is a gastropub in Singapore also called The Chop House. The menu is quite similar, offering diners burgers, steaks, and lots of different types of beers and wine. There’s also a beer tap on some of the benches which looked uber cool – customers just need to buy a special card ($300) to activate their device and they can serve themselves brews until the money runs out. The restaurant is quite spacious and there is also an outdoor area which is great for the summer. I love the relaxing vibe and it’s great for catching up with friends over beer and burgers.
We started with these Japanese beef – cooked medium rare, the sauce was delicious, a little spicy which gave it a nice kick.
I couldn’t go past the beef burger with cheese and bacon – sounds simple enough right? It was excellent, potentially my favourite burger in Hong Kong thus far – better than Beef and Liberty in my humble opinion. The beef was juicy and tender, the cheese was perfect and the bacon was definitely a wonderful addition.
On top of that, it was served with these potato gems! I haven’t had these in years, and they were crunchy on the outside and deliciously soft on the inside. Even Dragon couldn’t resist.
‘The Mother’ whenever he sees turkey sandwich he would order it. I am not sure why because surely my turkey sandwiches are better? The turkey sandwich was served with guacamole and salad – it was nice but no thing special I thought but then again, I am not big on turkey sandwiches.
The steak looks pretty decent – will definitely come back to try. I am not missing the Chophouse in Sydney – especially the pork and not to mention the chocolate!
GA’s ratings: 8 / 10
3/F, Soundwill Plaza II
1 Tang Lung Street
Causeway Bay, Hong Kong
Ph: +852 2771 3177
I am slowly making the rounds of dim sum places in Hong Kong. A friend was visiting from Singapore, originally from Sydney, and we have known each other for a while now. I suggested the West Villa Restaurant which is located in Causeway Bay – apparently it is a new location, Lee Gardens. Reservations are still highly recommended as the place was buzzing and busy.
There were about 6 of us – the more people the better, which means we can eat more! We started with the soy chicken which was served in a clay pot and steaming hot! The chicken incredibly tender, and Dragon enjoyed it very much.
The individual xiao long bau were also fantastic! The skin was a little thicker than those you get from Din Tai Fung but it was still good. Lots of juice so make sure you wait until it has cooled down before putting the whole thing in your mouth!
Dim sum is really incomplete for me without chicken feet – I know it is not everyone’s cup of tea but it is a must order for me.
These vegetarian dumplings were great – translucent pastry with lots of fillings.
I didn’t have any of the pork and thousand year old egg congee but everyone seemed to have enjoyed it. I only eat congee when I am sick, otherwise no thank you.
The bbq pork bun was indeed very fluffy. My favourite would still have to be from Man Wah – the bun and filling are the best I have eaten thus far.
The bbq pork rice rolls were good – we also ordered the beef and the prawns.
The fried bbq pork bun was definitely a favourite of mine. Was it as good as Tim Ho Wan? Possibly and we didn’t have to wait 45 minutes for it.
For dessert, we ordered a couple of egg tarts, mango and pomelo dessert and doufuhua which is dessert made with very soft tofu. The egg tarts were ok, I still prefer the one from teo cheong bakery but the doufuhua had lots of ginger which was good.
The food was definitely good, the service unfortunately was a bit of a hit and miss. It was so lovely catching up with my old friend, A – can’t wait to see you again in Hong Kong or Singapore. You can never go wrong with Dim Sum right?
Have a great weekend and happy eating!
GA’s ratings: 7.5 / 10
West Villa Restaurant
Room 101-102, 1/F
Lee Garden Phase 2
28 Yan Ping Road
Ph: +852 2882 2110
I heard about this place from my friend thesuzchef, her husband went to high school with the owner of Via Tokyo – who also owns Ramen Jo and Haven. I love everything matcha! Via Tokyo specialises in matcha and milk ‘soft cream’ along with traditional Japanese desserts. Via Tokyo can be found on the busy street of Leighton Road, and the place is TINY – you can possibly sit about 12 people max?
I’ve been here a couple of times now and every time it has been excellent. Mind you – I pretty much get the same thing every single time! Without fail, I always get the fruit matcha with shiratama amitsu. The green tea matcha is definitely one of the best I have had in Hong Kong. I have yet to go to Sweets house cha cha so I can’t compare but I really do like the matcha.
‘The Mother’ had the original – soft cream anmitsu and although it is indeed creamy I do prefer the green tea matcha. It is infinitely better.
I’ve also tried the green tea latte… LOVE! The place does get extremely busy, we have been lucky as we have been coming here off peak so only had to wait 5 – 10 minutes for a table. I am not sure if I would wait for 90 mins for a table though! Take away would be a better option. No doubt will be back – Dragon really enjoyed it also!
GA’s ratings: 8 / 10
Shop nos. 1A-1B, G/F.,
Leishun Court, 106-126 Leighton Road,
I have been to this restaurant a couple of times now, once for dim sum and another for dinner. I have to say, both times, food was really good. Heichinrou can be found in Times Square in Causeway Bay on the 11th Floor. Can you believe that I don’t go to dim sum very often in Hong Kong? Maybe once every quarter, not even that! I used to go once a month in Sydney but got very sick of it very quickly. Having dim sum with just ‘The Mother’ sometimes is hard, as you can’t eat as much… well he can’t anyways.
We started with some soy chicken which believe it or not, was eaten by Dragon herself! My friend, M, only had like 2 pieces – Sorry! It was deliciously tender and the skin silky smooth!
I absolutely love yu tau wrapped in Cheung fun.
The hundred thousand year old egg was also delicious – a favourite of mine.
Chicken feet which was delicious.
M ordered the shrimp dumpling – it was huge and she absolutely enjoyed it.
Dragon was still hungry and insisted that we order more chicken wings (she was doing the chicken wings movement!) We ordered these wings which were slightly sweet.
For dessert, I couldn’t go past the custard with yolk – OH MY! This was deliciously sinful – love the oozy egg yolk! NICE!
For dinner, there were 3.5 of us – two of my high school friends and Dragon of course! She wouldn’t want to miss out on char siu and soy chicken! We started with char siu and this was good. Had the right amount of fat and meat ratio. Yum!
Dinner with M is never complete if there are no vegetables – beans with minced pork – one of my favourites, but a tad on the oily side.
Soy chicken – this was as good as lunch!
M and S wanted the claypot rice which came with blood sausage, Chinese sausage, some pig trotters and chicken. I love blood and Chinese sausage which were delicious.
Service I thought was good and efficient. Will definitely go back to try their other dishes!
GA’s ratings: 7.5 / 10
Shop 1102, 11/F, Food Forum
Times Square, 1 Matheson Street
Causeway Bay, Hong Kong
Ph: +852 2506 2333