Month: November 2015

FRITES Belgium on Tap: Laksa Mussels? Yes Please!

FRITES has been around in Hong Kong for a few years. But the dramatic number of new restaurants opening up each month (or week) in Hong Kong means that some of the older ones don’t get much attention. That can sometimes be a huge mistake though… Especially if laksa mussels and deep fried camembert cheese are involved! Steak tartare – HK$175 I used to have a lot of good steak tartares in London. But the yummier ones I had in Hong Kong just happened to be the fusion type (at Viet Kitchen and Le Garcon Saigon). In the more western scene, the one at Frites is definitely among the best so far. The meat quality was excellent and fresh, while the spices used were right and the toast was crispy and buttery-ly delicious! Crumbed and fried camembert – HK$135 *must order* The menu at FRITES is heaven for meat lovers (i.e. me) so we were extremely stuck on what else to order… There were 3-4 competing choices just on the starters section. We had hugely mistakenly overlooked this non-meat …

Le Garcon Saigon: New Southern Vietnamese

From talking Bep/Nha Trang to Viet Kitchen, to my latest favourite beef pho spot, Bun Cha, it’s clear that I love my Vietnamese food. While my Vietnamese ventures almost always consist of ordering beef pho, Le Garcon Saigon focuses on Southern cuisine, where beef pho is apparently not as big a thing – well basically they don’t serve pho at all. Located near Pacific Place 3/Star Street in Wan Chai/Admiralty, this place is buzzing like no other in the area. I’ll be honest to say that I found it just a bit too noisy though. The prices are admittedly quite a bit higher than your usual casual Viet affair, but I loved all the dishes and service was more than excellent, hence I’d still recommend going for it. Wagyu beef tartare – HK$158 Looking back, the wagyu steak tartare (one of our starters) turned out to be the most expensive dish we ordered. Well that’s not too bad a news since the absolute price is not too high and these are typically not cheap elsewhere …

Curious Palette: All-day Brunch and Coffee in Singapore

The last time (before this weekend) I visited Singapore was about three years ago and in this time, the hipster cafe trend has definitely caught on – I’d say they’re ahead of us in Hong Kong (See: Exploring Artisan Coffee Shops in Hong Kong). I was here for a dear friend’s wedding so my opportunities to explore were limited but Curious Palette stood out to be a clean and cute cafe; plus, it was conveniently located near Middle Road between Little India/Dhoby Ghaut. Laid back interior I was immediately in love with the interior when I stepped in. There was nothing revolutionary about the decor but the general vibe was stylishly simple and comfortable. The lighting was also very natural, which meant it was a perfect spot for a good catch up session and a bunch of flattering food photos. Ricotta Hotcakes Since I recently made a batch of my own ricotta hotcakes, I was intrigued with how cafes do it and I was also craving some at the same time. It was still 10am, …

The First Floor by Lifestyle Federation: New on Duddell St

I definitely agree that it’s hard to keep up with all the new restaurants opening up in Hong Kong, but The First Floor by Lifestyle Federation is one of the latest hitting Central that’s definitely worth some spotlight. On inspecting the stylishly beautiful interior, including a kitchen demonstration table, I couldn’t help but ask more about whether they cater to private events. It immediately felt like the perfect spot for those fancy corporate client events and it felt genius to keep this location in mind in case I ever had to make a suggestion. But it was not corporate-boring in any sense. They have an interesting showcase of products on show, which they employ in their dishes and can also be bought individually – think olive oil, housemade jams, tea, that kind of thing. So the interior was excellent, but thankfully not as excellent as the food. Homemade Bread with Four Butters The bread is reason in itself to visit The First Floor. Not only do they make a range of interesting breads in house, …

Lady M: What’s the Hype?

Instagram is my favourite database to do my food research; it’s a lot of raw data to go through, but you get honest opinions and find out about all types of restaurants out there. It’s also how I first came to know Lady M’s signature mille crepe cakes, years before it was even sold in this city! Follow me on Instagram @lolleroll for my “raw” feed! So when Lady M came to Asia from New York, opening stores in Singapore, it was so popular that Hong Kong peeps couldn’t stop raving about it. Had I visited myself, I would’ve definitely lugged one back to Hong Kong instead of the default Bengawan Solo pandan cake. Therefore, no surprise that there’d be a massive queue when it first opened in Harbour City (Tsim Sha Tsui). But lucky I was that Lady M finally opened a second store at IFC mall (Central) and blessed I am that my boyfriend went down before lunch hours to queue up for it! Earl Grey Mille Crepe Exclusive to HK – HK$75 …

Tetsu: New Japanese Tsukemen Ramen in Causeway Bay

Straight outta Japan, つけめんTETSU is the latest Tsukemen noodles joint to open doors in Hong Kong (5 November 2015). What is Tsukemen (沾麵)? Tsukemen is a specific type of Japanese ramen noodle where you dip each strand of noodles into a thick flavourful soup/sauce before taking each bite. After finishing your noodles, a separate hot light broth is usually poured into the thick sauce and you can have the mixture as soup. Although I’ve only had a handful of different Tsukemens in Hong Kong, this one at Tetsu is decidedly my favourite! Extremely Al Dente I ordered the standard Tsukemen option, where the noodles are served cold (and dry) while the thick soup on the side is hot. The plain noodles by itself was already pretty outstanding given its perfectly chewy al dente texture. I’d definitely suggest going with the cold (“normal”) option as the “hot” noodles option are served in soup and start getting soggy as it cooks itself while you eat. The soup here is also extremely flavourful. Yet at the same time …

Do Mug Cakes Actually Taste Good?

If you follow any food blogs, accounts or websites, you must have seen all the viral posts on “mug cakes”. It’s an easy sell for modern busy/lazy people, because it’s a quick cake recipe that’s supposed to take no longer than 5 minutes, including microwave time. So I’ve always been curious as to whether mug cakes actually taste good. Even though many of them sound horrible – come on, you can’t expect real cake with just 3 ingredients, some actually look amazing. So I browsed a while for relatively complex mug cake recipes. Plus I was hoping that adding in some characteristics of actual good cake could give me a better shot of churning out a decent tasting cake. That’s why you’ll see the ingredients list I used is so long. Recipe for Chocolate Mug Cake Ingredients: 1/8 cup flour 1/8 cup sugar 1 tsp baking powder 1/8 cocoa powder pinch of salt 1/8 milk vanilla essence 1 egg 1/8 oil Method: Mix the dry ingredients then mix in the wet ingredients. Pop it in the microwave on “high” for 1.5 …