Sunday, 24 July 2016

Kam's Roast Goose 甘牌燒鵝 - Wan Chai - Kowloon, Hong Kong

Hope everyone is enjoying their weekend. I've lost my voice, regained it back and now on the verge of losing it again. I haven't lost my voice for as long as I can remember and it just feels very odd. Typing is much easier during times like this. Stay warm in this chilly cold!

How could one go to Hong Kong without having Cantonese style roast meats? We certainly didn't miss it. It's hands down one of the quintessential iconic eats that is available on nearly every street and corner. A trip to Hong Kong is not complete without having at least one classic roast meat dish. Whether it be duck, goose, pork or chicken.

After arriving at our hotel and checking in, we made our way to Wan Chai for a late lunch. With a complimentary portable mobile provided by the hotel, getting around was relatively straightforward.

This was the amazing view from our room. For those who are looking for a place that is central and close to public transport, I do recommend the Cordis Hotel at Langham Place in Mongkok.

Kam's Roast Goose is owned by Hardy Kam, the grandson of the late Kam Shui Fai who was the founder of the famous and internationally acclaimed Yung Kee Restaurant, which I'll be posting about later.

While it's relatively new in the food scene, having opened in 2014, it has built up a loyal following. Within four months of opening it was awarded the coveted 1 star in the Michelin Guide in 2015 and then again in 2016.

Business here is brisk and if you come during busy lunch hours be prepared to wait. Most locals order the roast goose leg so be clear and concise in what you order or end up with the breast meat.

It's a simple, clean and modest eatery that focuses mainly on roast meats unlike Yung Kee which has a wider selection of Cantonese food. With a seating capacity of 30 there isn't much room but if you don't want to wait the option to take away is available.

As the name of the restaurant suggests, the roast goose is their specialty. The goose here is roasted in a gas oven in contrast to its father restaurant which uses the traditional method of cooking in the charcoal oven.

Service is friendly and courteous. They even helped us with what to order as there were so many options to choose from. They suggested we order the set menu as you get to try more and it's better value so that's what we ordered.

The 'House Soup' is a personal favourite of mine. I really enjoyed the version here as it wasn't diluted and was loaded with flavour and nutrients. Pure comfort food.

The 'Roast Goose and Roast Pork Combination' was delicious. The roast pork was juicy, succulent and fatty. The roast goose skin was slightly crispy and the meat was tender.

The roast meat came with two dipping sauces. A mustard style sauce and a subtly sweet plum sauce for the goose.

The 'Fresh Braised Tofu' was surprisingly tasty. It's marinated with a soy sauce and silky smooth on the palate.

'Sesame Oil Marinated Cucumbers' is served cold. It was wonderfully crunchy in texture and we really liked the mix of garlic and chillies to give it a bit of a spice kick.

We enjoyed our experience at Kam's Roast Goose. The prices are reasonable  and of the three places we tried in Hong Kong, this was our favourite.

G/F, Po Wah Commercial Center
226 Hennessy Rd
Hong Kong

Phone no: 85 2 2520 1110

Opening Hours
7 Days a Week
11:30am - 9:30pm


Monday, 18 July 2016

Bills - Surry Hills - Sydney, Australia

Owned by celebrity chef Bill Granger, Bills has been on the top of my to go to places for a long time.  I've heard rave reviews about the fluffy ricotta pancakes. With my friend from Brisbane in town for the weekend it was a good chance to try out the cafe as she had a craving for pancakes. This is coming from someone who can eat chocolate and anything sweet all day long.

She never fails to bring the rain with her when she comes to Sydney. Every time she visits it rains heavily regardless of whether it is Summer or Winter. We always make a joke about it and this time was no exception.

It was a cold, wet and windy morning. We started at Central Station and walked up the steep hills of Surry Hills with our umbrellas held up high to combat the rain coming from all directions. Finally we reached our destination on Crown Street.

It was buzzing with patrons and thankfully we managed to grab a table straightaway, albeit the last non-sharing table. Its modern, warm and very relaxed inside.

We started off with the essential coffees to kick start the day.  Brewed with beans from Single Origin Roasters, the 'Latte ($4.10)' and 'Cappuccino($4.10)' were robust and smooth without the bitterness.

There are a number of items to choose from their breakfast menu, from the basic toasts and spreads to the more elaborate dishes such as the crisp fried rice. We chose to share two of their classic items.

The highly anticipated 'Ricotta Hotcakes ($22.00)' arrived looking amazingly thick and fluffy with a blob of honeycomb butter and a side of maple syrup. Generous slices of banana are hidden beneath the three hotcakes. Where out thou more butter? The butter to pancake ratio was lacking. There just wasn't enough for us butter lovers.

The inside of the hotcakes had hidden chunks of ricotta giving it a light and airy texture. Delicious and tasty hotcakes that weren't dense and had the right sweetness level.

The 'Corn Fritters ($23.00)' is another one of their signature dishes. An abundance of sweet and juicy corn kernels combined together in a light batter, is served with roast tomatoes, spinach and crispy bacon. We also added 'Avocado Salsa ($4.00)' which I would definitely recommend as the fritters could be dry on its own.

The service is attentive and prompt. Prices are on the expensive side for these simple dishes but they don't compromise on the quality of their ingredients. Breakfast is served till midday.

359 Crown St
Surry Hills NSW 2010

Phone no: 02 9360 4762

Opening Hours
Monday - Friday: 7am - 10pm
Saturday - Sunday: 7am - 10pm


Bills Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Wednesday, 6 July 2016

Textbook Boulangerie Patisserie - Alexandria - Sydney, Australia

Textbook Boulangerie Pattisserie offers delicious pastries, cakes and bread. 

Located on busy Botany Road in Alexandria, its been open for close to a year now and has garnered a following after making its rounds on social media.

After having lunch at BOB, a pop up restaurant in Rosebery by Three Blue Ducks, we quickly drove down the road to to the patisserie to have dessert.

Arriving with minimal time before closing, most of the small cakes were sold out. With less than half an hour to go, we chose our cakes, got our coffees and scoffed everything down. We even got some cakes to take away. So greedy we are. How could one resist? The cakes are all so pretty.

The 'White Chocolate, Mango, Kaffir Lime & Coconut Cake (8.50)' tastes as good as it looks. I'm drawn by the Asian inspired flavours. Encased in a white chocolate mousse wall and filled with coconut dacquoise and layers of kaffir custard and mango jelly. A beautiful creamy dessert that's not too sweet.

The pastel green 'Apple Crumble Cake ($8.50)' is one of their most popular cakes for a reason. It's smooth, glossy and has amazing textures. The crumbly biscuit base and the apple custard mousse go so well together, with bits of poached cinnamon apple pieces hiding within.

'The Blueberry Cheesecake ($8.50)' looks aesthetically amazing with deep purple impressions. A picture perfect dome shaped cheesecake that is not too rich nor too heavy, balanced out by the thick biscuit base.

Texbook Patisserie have been releasing new croissant flavours every weekend that are strictly limited in quantities. Recent savoury flavours have included truffle and foie gras. Apparently you have to go early in the morning to grab one one these delicacies as they do sell out quickly.

Worth going to for a decent sweet fix if you are in the area.

274 Botany Rd
Alexandria NSW 2015

Phone no:(02) 9699 6156

Opening Hours
Monday: Closed
Tuesday - Friday: 7:00am to 3:00pm
Saturday: 7:00am to 4:00pm
Sunday: 7:00am to 2:00pm


Textbook Boulangerie-Patisserie Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Saturday, 2 July 2016

Four Seasons Pot Rice 四季煲仔飯 - Yau Ma Tei - Kowloon, Hong Kong

Those in Australia, don't forget to vote in the Federal Election as every vote counts! 

There are two famous claypot rice joints near Mongkok, Hing Kee Claypot Rice Restaurant and Four Seasons Pot Rice. The decision was pretty easy. One was outside in the open air and the latter had indoor seating. On that particular night it was cold so we chose to go with Four Seasons Pot Rice in Yau Ma Tei.

Claypot rice is essentially rice grains slowly cooked with your choice of toppings over a high heat charcoal fire. It is served piping hot and the bottom layer of the pot has a crunchy crust with a slightly smoky taste.

My colleague who is from Hong Kong always tells me the best thing to eat there is the claypot rice. It's his favourite comfort food and I was curious to find out why. I'm particularly fond of the Singaporean and Malaysian version of the claypot rice as it is well seasoned. The Hong Kong one is similar but it comes in a plain state and you have to add the provided seasoning to give it flavour.

We were lucky to get a table arriving just after 6pm, but as soon as we were seated the line outside got longer. It's a hit with the locals and even celebrities so be prepared to wait. Sharing a table with others is a possibility. The inside is basic and no-frills yet charmingly old school.

There are over 30 claypot options to choose from spanning across a few pages in both English and Chinese. Four Seasons has a few house specialties such as ducks feet, eel and frog. Yes you read right, frog! We weren't too adventurous so we chose to go with the traditional options.

A bottle of sweet soy sauce is presented at the table before the claypot arrives. Once the claypot arrives at the table, take off the lid and quickly put in the seasoning. Add it liberally. Then close the lid so the flavours penetrate into the rice.

The 'Chicken and Salted Fish Pot Rice (HKD 51.00 )' is subtle and not overpowering with the salted fish. The rice is cooked perfectly leaving it fluffy and fragrant.

The 'Chinese Sausage and Chicken Pot Rice (HKD 51.00)' embodies a plethora of flavours and the beautiful aroma whiffs through the air once you open the lid. The chicken is tender and the fatty lap cheong is delicious.

What I like about the Hong Kong claypot rice is having the flexibility to adjust the seasoning to your own preferences allowing the combination of flavours and textures to be infused together. The portions are generous in size and each pot can easily be shared among two people.

We also ordered a side of vegetables.

Four Seasons Pot Rice restaurant is an unpretentious and cheap eatery that serves excellent claypot rice. Go early and be prepared to queue for a table.

The line stretched all the way down the street when we left. I've heard that the waiting time could be up to an hour or even longer.

46-58 Arthur St
Yau Ma Tei
Hong Kong

Opening Hours
7 Days a Week
6:00pm - 12:00am