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hong kong

Featured, Hong Kong

Alvy’s Kennedy Town

September 27, 2017

Kennedy Town is the neighbourhood recently heard on everyone’s lips, and Alvy’s is the new hangout serving up craft beers, pizzas and wickedly delicious comfort food.

Alvy’s has collaborated with Young Master Ale to bring local brews, imported beers, wine, US craft whiskies and cocktails. The space is inspired by a New York City style pizzeria with neon lights, a long wooden bar, white oval plates and a mirror where the specials of the day are written on. Oh, and the highlight? Towards the back of the restaurant spot the Big Red Bitch AKA. the big pizza oven.

To munch on, we started with the latkes ($78) which is a cantonese-style dish of char is, ginger and onion paste and potato pancake served on a bed of sour cream. The Yu Kwen Yick fried chicken ($88) was tangy, zesty and spicy which excuse the steal ‘FINGER-LICKING’ good. However, the star of the night was the a la Vodka pizza ($108). FYI I have been guilty of now ordering this pizza on a sunday night when I am in my onesie binging on Narcos. It’s been done several times over.

The vodka tomato sauce, melted mozzarella bocconcini (omg yas) and pecorino really makes it worth the carbs. The best part about it, it’s not over the top cheesy.

The fries were not bad, but not worth the mention either.

It’s a homey neighbourhood bar kinda vibe, definitely need to take a few friends there just for a beer and perhaps a slice of a la vodka.

8/F Holland Street, Kennedy Town

Tel: 2312 2996

 

Spoon Rate: P8301YELP8301YELP8301YELP8301YEL/5

Dining Scene, Featured

Pirata Hong Kong- Restaurant Week

August 4, 2017

The Flagship restaurant of the Pirata Group, Pirata didn’t leave much of an impression on me the first time I tried. In fact, it was placed in the “whatever” pile of Italian restaurants I may not ever visit again based on the fact that I didn’t remember much of anything that I tried.

This time around, Restaurant Week popped up and we decided to take another chance on it and give it a go. When we arrived at Pirata, we were 15 minutes early for our booking so they made me climb 2 flights up in 4 inch heels to sit at the bar that was outdoor with one fan, not a great start considering it was 35 degrees out.

Finally when they called us back down via an elevator (Why didn’t we just take it up?) we sat down and got greeted by an incredibly friendly waiter (shocking in Hong Kong) and he took us through our menu.

Before I get into my favourites, let me just say that Pirata was EXTREMELY generous with their Restaurant Week menu with each portion coming as full sized including the starters so it was technically a 7 course meal.

My standout dishes were the Mamma’s Meatballs, the Burrata Cheese Salad, The Parmesan Ravioli (I asked them for no beef) and the Orrecchiette with Sausage and N’duja. The desserts were alright nothing we haven’t tasted before and the mains were average as well but really worth it for the price of 398 per person. I went home in a #foodcoma but definitely had a #foodgasm.  I would suggest the next time around to go for the pastas plainly because this group has launched Pasta legends PICI and know their pastas pretty well.

Butter sage ravioli with goats cheese filling and shaved truffle. Endless courses at @piratahk my opinion has certainly changed of this fabulous place now one of my favourites. The things they can do to pasta baffles me, not to mention MAMA’S MEATBALLS.

PIATTI PICCOLI

Burrata Cheese (v)

Tomato, basil, rocket

And

M.M.M. (My Mamma’s Meatballs)

Pork, beef, egg, tomato sauce, extra virgin olive oil

And

Arancini (v)

Acquerello rice, saffron, D.O.P Fontina cheese

PASTA

Orecchiette with Sausage and N’duja

Home made orecchiette, Italian sausage, spicy n’duja, cherry tomato

And

“Liquid” Parmesan Ravioloni with Truffle

Beef ragu, shaved truffle, parmesan cheese, butter, sage

PIATTI GRANDI (Please choose one of the below per person)

The Butchers’ Cut

Flank steak tagliata, rocket, cherry tomatoes

Or

Giant Tiger Prawns (2 Pieces)

Grilled prawns, salsa verde, garlic, parsley

Or

Eggplant Parmigiana (v)

Deep fried eggplant, tomatoes, D.O.P buffalo mozzarella, tomato sauce, parmesan

DOLCI

Tiramisu

Traditional style with coffee, mascarpone, Marsala wine

Or

Panna Cotta

Home made raspberry coulis, fresh raspberry

 

Pirata: 239 Hennessy Rd, Wan Chai

Spoon Rate:P8301YELP8301YELP8301YELP8301YEL/5

Dining Scene, Featured

Tokyolima: Peruvian Japanese

April 12, 2017
Those of you who have been to Pirata & the Optimist would have heard that the new shiny toy on the block is the newly opened izakaya, Tokyolima. 

This Peruvian-Japanese menu also can be called Nikkei, which is based on the marriage of Japanese and Peruvian cuisines. Did you know the chef is from Chicha? Chef Arturo Melendez. So naturally, my expectations sky-rocketed when I found this out. Sadly, my experience was such a disappointment.

 


I am a frequent fan of Kyoto Joes, Wasabi Warriors, Monster Sushi so naturally I couldn’t wait to add another Japanese favourite to my list. In comparison, Tokyolima is the brand-new go to place with absolutely no substance.
The food was tasteless, the vegetarian sushi was just pickled raw veggies, the tuna sushi was bland and the idea of asking for wasabi 3 times to make the taste slightly bearable really tested my patience.
The chicken karaage was the only dish that saved the meal, as the meat was tender, soft and quite delicious. The cod was boring, been there and done that.
At $350 per person I’d say even that wasn’t worth that much. Sad times.

G/F, 18-20 Lyndhurst Terrace,
Central, Hong Kong

Tel: (+852) 2811 1152
E-Mail:
info@tokyolima.hk

SPOON RATE: P8301YEL/5

 

What did you think of Tokyolima? Tell me below! 

Featured, Hong Kong, In Focus

Flawless, Central

February 8, 2017

Flawless has been around the block for a while on Wyndham Street, specialising in bespoke facials, nail pampering and make-up services. I have avoided it several times, mainly because I felt the pricing of Flawless was on the higher spectrum, and I could probably get the same service at my local spa in K-town.

I recently purchased the Entertainer app to save on all buy 1-get 1 around HK. You can save on retail, getaways, food, drinks & beauty/fitness. Behold, Flawless had buy 1-get 1 bespoke facial so I decided to go ahead and try it out.

On a Saturday afternoon, it’s quiet as I arrive and decorated in a vintage furniture with a very friendly receptionist. I wait for my therapist for about 3 minutes before I get ushered towards the treatment rooms with a hot pink door. The therapist explains to me that the spa uses three main product lines which are the Medik8, Refinery & Aromatherapy Associated.

The treatment rooms are simple, comfortable, warm and the bed came with a cosy white duvet instead of the usual rough towels. Played with soft spa music to relax me and keep me away from the hustle/bustle outside. The therapist addresses my facial concerns and begins on the treatment. The pros were, she moisturised my face to perfection, tended to my needs and extracted incredibly ‘flawlessly’.

However, the strange thing is I had to pay extra for a facial mask. I usually have a facial mask included in every facial I have, and considering the extravagant price of $1080HKD for the facial… I was a bit taken aback that she said it was $220HKD extra for a facial mask.

Oh wells, I am definitely going back but with the entertainer app for my second FREE facial!

This is one of the few facials that would be great to have before going out that doesn’t leave your face red or puffy. I felt extremely fresh, and I enjoyed the extra massage time she gave me!

Flawless, 4/F, Sea Bird House, 22-28 Wyndham Street, Central, flawless.hk.com

Brunch, Dining Scene, Drinks, Featured, Hong Kong

Ladies who Brunch: Beef & Liberty Brunch LKF

December 12, 2016

Hip, hip, hooray! There’s a new brunch game in town and i’m telling you what it’s all about as part of my ‘Ladies who Brunch’ series or aka LWB!

Three fistpumps for the meal not denting my wallet. Beef & Liberty has the best hamburgers in Hong Kong. Don’t try to dispute it or they will whip out their 3 year streak for being Michelin-recommended in your face.
Alongside with Mandarin Oriental award-winning Group Executive Chef Uwe Opocensky taking the lead in the kitchen, Beef & Liberty has enhanced their menu to a whole other level of deliciousness. (*cough* bring back the CHICKEN)

Beef & Liberty offers an ala carte brunch at their newest space in Lan Kwai Fong California Tower. If you feel like you need a glass of bubbly or three with a side of a strong bloody mary’s, yes you girls that need champagne- simply top up your free-flow options (2 hours) for an additional $178 which includes free flow beer, prosecco, bloody mary & wines.

We (K, Manisha & myself) kicked off our brunch at Beef & Liberty on a Saturday arvo with the infamous Eggs & Soldiers ($48). Now, when I say ‘infamous’ I say that because if you are an ‘instagrammer’ and don’t live in the dark ages… you would see photos of this dish floating around all the foodporn hashtags. The Eggs & Soldiers, is one of Chef Uwe’s specialities served in an egg crate with maple bacon, two crispy eggs and maldon sea salt with buttered bread. The bread is to dip into the crispy egg yolky centre, it’s a fun experience (and a great boomerang viddy) it’s frigging legendary.

The Beef & Liberty Avocado & Ricotta Toast ($78) with smashed avocado, homemade ricotta, parsley, extra virgin olive oil and toasted sourdough is an option for our vegetarian fiends/herbivores who crave a healthier option on a Saturday morning to wash down with prosecco. I absolutely loved this dish (blame the aussie in me), as soon as it arrived I squealed ‘AVO ON TOAST!’

 

The Beans & Liberty ($78) is a quirky dish served in a bean/soup Campbell’s CAN which is customised HtoT with Beef & Liberty branding. Therefore, it included instructions on how to tuck into it whole heartedly with steps 1-4. The dish consists of braised white beans, slow roasted pork shoulder, pork crackling served with a soft poached egg that needs to be mixed in before taking a spoonful.

If you aren’t counting calories, (calling all my Mac N Cheese lovers and skinny mamiis!) The Mac N’ Cheese Sandwich ($68) elbow pasta, Isle of Mull cheddar, Parmesan, chives, tomato, creme fraiche and bacon jam is a must. A twist on the classic Mac N’Cheese dish, Beef & Liberty takes it up on a notch with the crispy Parmesan crust that just gives you a foodgasm in the best kinda’ way.

Beef & Liberty
3/F, California Tower
30-32 D’Aguilar Street, Central
Tel: +852 2450 5778
http://www.beef-liberty.com/hk/

Spoon Rate: P8301YELP8301YELP8301YELP8301YEL/5

Confessions

How do we grow?

December 8, 2016

‘Growth’ is a term used in sync with change. You look at growth, you think to yourself how you as a person will change and enhance your skills/characteristics/lifestyle choices. But, in a country where growth for our generation has an expiration date, how do we grow into our futures?

For this generation, our futures are very bleak in Hong Kong. We tell ourselves it’s going to be okay but who are we kidding? The hope that we could have the family of four, the station wagon, a thriving business with a seat at the head of the table and the big house for our Sunday picnics… *poof* (cue sound effect) that’s not possible in the 852. Why? I’ll tell you why. Because, of rent. The Government is not looking to invest in this generation but, they are looking to invest in those multi millionaires from the +86 who can purchase apartments at sky rocketing prices and hike up the prices for the little guy.

How do we as a generation grow when our own Government won’t help us? We live in a bubble you & I because well, we work in the corporate world. We bring in a stable pay cheque enough to fund our lifestyles of hanging out at Staunton’s, shopping online and perhaps putting a few dollars into our savings… where does the rest of it go? Rent. None of it goes towards our dreams, travel, goals, saving up to purchase homes for our future or security because well, there isn’t any left! 60% of most paycheques go towards our rent, the rest of it is for our living standards.. I mean we have to buy a loaf of bread once in a while. Hey- the lights got to be paid to be on too…

I am not cribbing, this is the adult world. But, how do we invest in our growth when our money is being snatched away by rent? How do we as a generation, save to invest in each other, in our creativity?

We’re alone and we will be the generation that gets left behind in shoe boxes and endless salary capped jobs unless, our own country that we pay taxes for decides to get up and help it’s people… and stop being controlled by greediness.  

 

Dining Scene, Featured

Mercato LKF California Tower

August 22, 2016

Chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten has decided to take up residence at California Tower and house his newest concept, Mercato.  With this family-style italian concept at California Tower, it’s got a great buzzy date night vibe to it for a Saturday night. The hubs & I deciding to splurge a little and explore California Tower a bit more, we ventured over to Mercato. Firstly, the staff has exceptional manners taking the typical ‘HK snobbery service’ off the table completely, staying true to the family-style concept it encourages diners to share at the table hence, we were SUPER full after 1 appetizer, 1 main and 1 dessert. 

I would suggest going to Mercato with a group so you can dabble with the signature dishes such as the whole roasted snapper, crispy beef short ribs as well as the house-made pastas & pizzas.

Mercato

Mercato’s wood-burning oven gives the pizzas an impressive texture with a crackling strong crust. Don’t forget to try the various exciting cocktails which have an Italian Twist such as the Almafi Sunset!

Our highlight was the black truffle, three cheese and farm egg pizza (HK$238) which has a great cheesy smell, with the runny egg yolk in the centre and the black truffle was definitely present in terms of taste!

Mercato

Recommended:

  • Tuna Tartare
  • Farm Egg Pizza with Truffles
  • Tiramisu

Spoon Rate: P8301YELP8301YELP8301YEL

http://www.californiatower.com/

Mercato, 8/F California Tower, 32 D’Aguilar Street, Lan Kwai Fong, tel: 3706 8567

Dining Scene, French

La Creperie – best crepes in town

August 18, 2016

La Creperie is located in Sheung Wan, it’s a nook out of place amongst the many little shops and hawkers in the area. My brother suggested us to go down to La Creperie for a bite or a few. It has savoury crepes and dessert crepes depending on your mood. When we got there, it was super crowded, ridiculously!

Screen Shot 2016-08-18 at 4.58.15 PM

Between us, we ordered Le Fours (bacon, mushrooms, cream) and La Complete (ham,emmental cheese and egg) and Crêpe w/ salted butter caramel, stewed apple and cinnamon. Oh divine heaven and calories, but mostly heaven.  The crepes were enticing. delicious and were decorated well to keep the filling intact. The balance of flavors and ingredients were immaculate which made us expect Paris had to be as good as this. The crepes were folded in a gourmet stylistic way, it was really exciting.

Screen Shot 2016-08-18 at 4.58.26 PM

The dessert crepe was as sexy as it gets. The interior of the diner was decked in a navy-themed blue and white decor and little lighthouse salt and pepper shakers come off quite charming and the french manager was absolutely a charming man.

At 12h30 the restaurant was full so we asked for the bill. It is good sign for La Creperie’s business. But remember to come early if you don’t want to wait for seats.

 

Phone: 2679-4666

La Creperie – Sheung Wan, G/F, 69 Jervois St., Sheung Wan, Hong Kong, Hong Kong S.A.R., China

http://www.lacreperie.com.cn/

Dining Scene, Featured, Hong Kong

Amalfitana, Repulse Bay

August 1, 2016

Despite the typhoon weather today I wanted to write this blog for ages… last weekend I got to spend an amazing night with my two best friends at Repulse Bay. Hearing raving reviews about Amalfitana, we knew we just had to try it out the infamous artisan pizza place which has brought a slice of the Amalfi Coast to Repulse Bay Hong Kong.

Amalfitana is the brainchild of the Roopchand brothers and the Chellaram brothers, they really know what works as their already iconic Rummin’ Tings & Fatty Crab venues hit Hong Kong with a bang.

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The decor of the venue truly pays homage to Italy with a huge pizza oven, outdoor seating and bar seating taking over the space. I was slightly disappointed as we booked a week in advanced but they placed us outside the venue near the escalators so we couldn’t really get the attention of the servers, and when we did my two things that I was so excited to try were sold out (Eggplant Parmigiana & Kale Salad *sad face*). Anyway, putting that aside- after getting the head waitresses’ attention, we told her we made a booking a week ago and we were disappointed things ran out, she was super attentive to our table. So A+ for service absolutely bang on’.

We kicked off with pesto garlic bread, which was great followed by the burrata & avocado appetiser! That was my highlight, it reminded me of a fresh vegetarian tartar that you would find with Salmon. It was brilliant and the balsamic vinegar & marinated tomatoes went well together!

The pizzas were filled with toppings from the Amalfitana parma ham, pepperoni to the quattro formaggio! You really can’t go wrong with the choices they have at Amalfitana, they know what they are doing with pizzas. Not to mention the experience is exciting as you get to cut slices with… SCISSORS! The hubby was taking the lead on this one, next time I want to go back to try the fiorentina which I heard has a perfectly cooked yolky egg on top of spinach and cheese!

Amalfitana

Shop 105, G/F, The Pulse
28 Beach Road
Repulse Bay
Hong Kong

Tel: +852 2388 7787

www.amalfitana.hk

 

Spoon Rate: P8301YELP8301YELP8301YELP8301YEL

 

Dining Scene, Featured

Limewood – Repulse Bay

April 11, 2016

A day at Repulse Bay beach on a Monday public holiday is probably the best way to enjoy a sangria, drink a few beers on the beach & indulge in a hearty meal. Limewood has taken advantage of the fact that they are in a prime location, probably with the yummiest cocktails on the strip hence, the prices are on par with other Maximal Concept restos. 

Limewood is not a typical Hong Kong diner, and the creativity from the Maximal culinary team is a definite effort. Starting with a pitcher of Sangria, we started to feel the service slipping already- requesting for a regular table we were placed on a high top (not cool!) & the Sangria took about 20 minutes to arrive. My impatient company definitely were getting antsy, luckily when it showed up it was one of the best Sangria’s I have tasted with fresh berries & mint leaves! Perfect for the heat that’s about to hit Hong Kong…shortly.

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Limewood merges together the cuisines of South America, Southeast Asia, Hawaii and the Caribbean which sounds a little confusing but it seemed to fit together quite well with a selection of meats such as seafood, poultry and a few veggie items on the menu- everything was very rustic. Options such as baked fish, whole baby chicken & much more really emphasizes the protein based menu that will get HK-ers coming back for more.

The Limewood service was lack, with our orders being confused & mixed up and we managed to get a few things delivered to our table twice. It’s not something you would expect considering the price tag… 

The Limewood dishes I would definitely recommend would be Salmon Ceviche, Corn fritters, Spicy Tiger Prawn Roll! Be ready to lighten your wallet when heading over to Limewood- but remember to have a few beers on the beach in order to get the full feel of Repulse Bay!

Spoon Rate: P8301YELP8301YEL

https://www.facebook.com/limewoodhk/

Shop 103/104, The Pulse
28 Beach Road
Repulse Bay
Hong Kong

Tel: +852 2866 8668

Closed on Mondays