18/F, The One, 100 Nathan Road, TST
Actress Carina Lau has recently opened three ventures on the 18th Floor of The One: Tapagria, Kyo-Shun and Zurrolia. Andrew and I chose to check out Tapagria for a more casual Spanish dine in. Zurrolia, also on this floor, is the fine-dining alternative.
Unsure what to expect, but secretly aching for an authentic, masterfully concocted sangria, I crossed my fingers desperately. One sip from their deep red jar of Wild Berry ($330; 1/2: $290), embellished with blackberries and all manners of sweetness in Cachaça, and my fingers weren’t the only things happily loosened.
I do remember looking at their food menu online as I was on my way (read: trying to work out the frustrating puzzle of elevators and lifts leading up to this mysterious floor at The One), and wondered dismally if the illustrations were a half-assed Windows Accessories Paint job. I suppose, in some ways, one shouldn’t judge the restaurant by its menu.
The stand-out was without a doubt the paella*! Incredibly rich, perfectly-seasoned rice was jeweled with a few fresh treasures from the sea – mussels, clams, and prawns. I loved the delicious depth of flavour, and might have to admit that it’s probably one of the better paellas I’ve tasted in Hong Kong. Sadly, it’s tapas-sized, so you might have to be the better man and let your partner steal away the lone prawn.
Cheung King Mansion, 144 Austin Road, Tsim Sha Tsui
A slight detour from Knutsford Terrace and you find yourself around Kimberly Road and Austin Avenue, an area I can only describe as Hong Kong’s K-Town. Indeed, Tsim Sha Tsui is synonymous with some of the best Korean food in Hong Kong, among other things (read: that ma laa yue daan near Granville Road that Andrew and I are currently obsessed with), so for anyone thinking of getting their Korean hotpot or BBQ on, this is the sitch.
If you walk further to Austin Road (closer to Jordan station than TST), you will come across Hansong, a delicious go-to for some late night Korean BBQ. Which is just what we did on a Saturday night.
Shop 210, Silvercord Tower, 30 Canton Road, Tsim Sha Tsui
I’ve been eating out quite a bit lately. And there are quite a few notable foodie moments that I am excited to share with WordPress (foodbite: a sous-vide wagyu ribeye at Shore…), but my sister and her hubby’s just left back to Boston, so I think I’m going to dedicate my next blog to our little trip to Tsim Sha Tsui.
There’s something quite classy about getting messy on sake. Or maybe I’m just saying that to justify a lack of self-restraint. But there is an art to drinking sake, I’m sure – an art to not scalding your tongue on the first lip lash and welcoming the warm rush down your throat, an art to maintaining your cool even after slugging hot liquid silk as if your number at Ippudo’s going to get called any minute (which it won’t, by the way; you just wait that goddamn hour like a trooper, dammit).
My sister and I have a history of excessive drinking (in b4 ‘you are an alcoholic’). We only realised after we totaled one too many cups of sake that we should never hang out with eachother when a drink is in the mix. Although, our last tour-de-force was in Philippines in 2008, so perhaps it was a long time coming; we went through three bottles of Jose Cuervo that night, and only stopped because the bar didn’t have any more in stock – or so they said. No chasers, no nothing, just a rampage of tequila and kareoke. We still have no idea how we managed it, and I’m starting to think my present tolerance with such vices are somehow rooted to that night. How the flying fuck? Honestly. One of life’s great mysteries. Another, by the by, is how they make the pork in Ippudo so damn delicious:
53-59 Kimberley Rd, Tsim Sha Tsui
I’ve got a New Year’s resolution to actually update this blog. I pretty much stopped eating properly in September because I’ve been a little silly; food was more sustenance than art, which is obviously a travesty by Hong Kong standards.
So I thought I’d start off with something easy, a nice little self-server: Nomads on Kimberly Road. It’s been around for a while, I remember going for one-too-many birthday dinners here when I was in high school. I always thought we looked annoying to fellow diners; three tables pushed together with little gwai muis giggling and screaming at eachother, taking flash candid photos, dressed up like tarts while a mother desperately tries to cover her 8 year old’s ears as we spit out how fuuuuucking hot Justin Timberlake is. Not much has changed; Justin Timberlake is still futuresex, and I was still taking flash photos… this time, of the banging food that gets grilled in the open kitchen. And, after a few glasses of wine, we were cracking up like we were 17 again.
Shop 301, Level 3
Ocean Terminal, Harbour City
Tsim Sha Tsui, Hong Kong
I went for a late lunch/early dinner with my sister on Saturday. We hit the BLT Burger restaurant in Tsim Sha Tsui’s Ocean Terminal. I’m not gonna lie, I honestly didn’t realise BLT stood for Bistro Laurent Tourondel, the French-trained New York restauranteur who opened up BLT Steak and its sister outlet BLT Burger. The whole time I was under the impression it was all about some kind of ominous Bacon Lettuce and Tomato Burger, which I did not see on the menu…!
The line’s usually very long around dinner apparently, but the turnover’s good. I suppose you can always tell a good restaurant by how many fans it has waiting patiently outside the doors. My sister made the executive decision to get there a little earlier than the dinner rush so we got seated in our own booth as soon as we arrived, which was excellent. I suppose the service gets a bit rushed and hasty when dinner service gets in full swing, as some openrice reviews have mentioned – but we had a really nice, smiling Filipino lady take our orders and our food came welcomingly quickly so I have absolutely no complaints.
I’m all for letting the photos paint the gastronomic picture, but I didn’t have time to bring out my Nikon so allow the shit camera phone photos; 5 megapixels is simply not enough to emphasize how full we felt just looking at the oozing Monterey Jack cheese off the chipotle tortilla chips, slapped on with some sour cream and chives with beef brisket hiding in every corner. A decent set of nachos, but I suppose if we’ve got to be objective about this (I’m quite partial to anything with cheese), I’d say the lobster nachos at Jaspa’s in Sai Kung or Dan Ryan’s loaded nachos have a little more to offer to the table.