Some people say the top attraction in Hong Kong is The Peak. According to me, the top attraction is The Pig – in the form of roast pork in Lei Garden Restaurant.
Lei Garden is a well-known chain of restaurants in Hong Kong and they even have overseas outlets in Macau, China and Singapore. The one at CHIJMES in Singapore was good when I dined there at the beginning of the year, so I was curious to know whether the ones in Hong Kong are better since most of them have been awarded with Michelin stars. Despite the fact that the North Point outlet was just across the road from the hotel I put up at, I decided to try the one at Wan Chai because some online source stated that it was better. I am unsure whether there is really a best outlet and perhaps they are all the same, but my experience at Lei Garden Wan Chai was good.
Reservations can be made online and I like such convenience. I made a reservation for dim sum lunch on Sunday.
冰烧三层肉 – HK$118 (SG$19.18)
As mentioned above, the roast pork was good enough to be a must try attraction in Hong Kong. However, I didn’t have the chance to try it at many places so I am unsure where has it best. This one at Lei Garden Wan Chai is already better than most versions I’ve tried in Singapore.
豉汁蒸凤爪 – HK$26 (SG$4.22)
I am no expert at chicken feet but this one is quite edible to me.
酥皮鸡蛋挞– HK$30 (SG$4.88)
I tend to order egg tarts instinctively when having dim sum and for that moment I forgot that in Hong Kong egg tarts could be found everywhere (better, and cheaper). This one has good custard and curst texture (flaky sort), but the crust has the taste of rancid oil which ruined the otherwise perfect tart.
蒸虾饺 – HK$34 (SG$5.52)
Call me biased but in Hong Kong I expect no less than perfect Ha Kau and thankfully this fit the definition. If this was found in Singapore it would easily be labelled as the best but in Hong Kong I assume this is the benchmark. The skin was thin but didn’t tear easily, was not soggy and the prawn filling was crunchy.
北菇滑烧卖 – HK$34 (SG$5.52)
Likewise for Siew Mai I expected it to be perfect and again this did not disappoint. The mushroom taste made it distinctly different but it worked and I liked it.
南翔小笼包 – HK$34 (SG$5.52)
Normally I would give xiao long bao a miss unless it is a restaurant specialising in it, because normal dim sum places usually are unable to do it properly. However, someone requested to have this so we just had to order against the odds. This was no exception and was probably the only let down of this meal.
荷香珍珠鸡 – HK$34 (SG$5.52)
This is their version of lor mai gai and I actually liked how it was small (there was 3 of this). Not bad.
奶皇流沙包 – HK$32 (SG$5.20)
I am disappointed with myself for only having custard bun once in this Hong Kong trip but thankfully this was good. Under first impression, the custard did not look promising because it was not very flowy, but upon scrutiny actually the texture was alright because flowy is not necessarily a good thing especially if the taste gets watered down and compromised. The custard here had the perfect balance of saltiness and sweetness that I was after and I’d say this is easily comparable to the good custard buns we have in Singapore.
韭皇鲜虾肠 – HK$42 ($6.80)
This chee cheung fun also falls into the good category comparing to most (horrible) ones I’ve had in Singapore, so no complaints here, despite this not being stellar and extraordinary.
The above meal was lunch for 4 people and the bill averaged out to about SG$20/pax, which is cheaper than what you get in Singapore considering the good standards. The portion may not seem to be a lot but in Hong Kong I suggest you don’t have too much in a single meal because you’ll be eating the whole day since delicious food is everywhere.