Thursday, April 19, 2012

Private Kitchens in Hong Kong

An interesting counterpoint to Hong Kong's ostentatious fine dining scene is that of the private kitchen.  These speakeasy-like restaurants are a hidden haven for some of the city's finest and most innovative food.

Lafe and I were able to join friends at one of three tables in a private kitchen called Yin Yang, tucked away in a small corner of the Wan Chai district on Hong Kong Island.  Over several hours we enjoyed tastes of about fifteen dishes from a fixed menu, that started in a very experimental, modern way and progressed to more rustic mains.  Some of the highlights included:

  • Pressed tofu with tomato pulp
  • Hard boiled organic egg with farmed fresh coriander
  • Organic carrot prepared to the consistency of a slice of cheese
  • Grilled calamari with peanuts and chiles
  • Chicken prepared in a komodo oven, accompanied by bits of crispy chicken skin
  • Roasted red pig
  • Iron pot fried rice
  • Water spinach sauteed with garlic
  • Carrot and lemongrass sorbet
This kitchen definitely offered up a yin/yang balance of experiment and tradition, of urban and rustic, that in a way anchor the extreme cosmopolitan nature of Hong Kong to its cultural roots.  

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