Eat sea food in Hong Kong

Hong Kong’s Sai Kung is famous for seafood.

If you want to go to a quieter place and a nicer environment for seafood as well as for a bit of sightseeing, you can think about going to Po Doi O near Sai Kong. The place is a bit remote though. You can go to Po Lam MTR Station on the Tseung Kuen O line. Take exit A2 for the bus terminal and take mini bus No 16. The destination of the bus is Po Doi O. The journey is about 15 minutes. If you take a taxi from Po Lam station, that will cost you about HK$60.

Huddled in a bay, Po Doi O is actually a small fishing village. It is so small that you can tour the whole village probably in 10 minutes.

There are two seafood restaurants – Fat Kei and Seafood Island. I’ve tried Seafood Island. The food is just so so but you get to sit at the pier to eat. That is something special. I heard the food at Fat Kei – the first restaurant you will encounter when you go into the village – is better.

The scenery around Po Doi O is beautiful, so it is a worthwhile trip, even though the seafood there may be not that gorgeous.

Eating tea eggs in Hong Kong

In Hong Kong, herbal tea shops like the one shown above are common. A bowl of herbal tea sells for about HK$7. The locals just drink it, standing on the pavement outside the shop. And pay when finished.

In most of the herbal tea shops, they also sell “tea eggs”, which you will see simmered in a rice cooker filled with spiced tea. As they have been soaked overnight, the shells are cracked to allow the flavors from the spice tea to leak in.

Though I often pass herbal tea shops, and see these cracked-shell eggs simmering in the soy sauce-like spiced tea, I have not been motivated to try just one.

But today, I finally had my first taste of the tea egg. I tell you, it tasted really good. Though the eggs are called tea eggs, don’t be fooled, they do not taste tea at all. That is all I can say.

So if you are visiting Hong Kong, try go for the tea eggs. It costs HK$3 for one, and HK$5 for two. Not every tea shop sells tea eggs though.

My tip is that, don’t go for the herbal tea,which you probably won’t like.  Go for the tea eggs.

Eating dumplings in Hong Kong

If you want to eat nice Beijing style dumplings, I recommend “Peking Shui Jiao Wang” (北京水餃皇) in Wanchai. It is at No. 118, Jeffe Road, Wanchai. MTR exit: Wanchai, Exit C. 

The price here, I must admit, is high compared with other dumpling restaurants. For a bowl of meat and vegetable dumplings, it costs at least HK$30 (about US$4). In other dumpling restaurants, it may be just HK$20 (about US$2.5).

But the high price means better quality.

I ordered a bowl of sour and spicy dumplings noodle (酸辣水餃麵). It tasted good. The sour and spicy soup base was not too spicy. The dumplings tasted fresh and the wrapping soft. It costed HK$38 (about US$5).

I also ordered a glass of soy bean drink. The drink came in a big glass and was only slightly sweatened – the least sweatened soy bean drink I have ever tried. Here in Hong Kong, restaurants sell heavily sweatened soy bean drink. 

“Peking Shui Jiao Wang” seems to have been recommended in some travel guide books. I saw two tables of foreigners there – there are probably ten tables in the whole restaurant. The menu is all in both English and Chinese. The staff was eloquent in recommending dishes to a table of foreigners. No doubt, this restaurant is often frequented by foreigners.

Experience in HK the fastest food in the world

In Hong Kong, there are three major Chinese fast food restaurants:

Cafe de Coral

http://www.cafedecoralfastfood.com

Fairwood

http://www.fairwood.com.hk

Maxim’s

http://www.maxims.com

(in Chinese only)

There are a few reasons why I recommend to you these fast food restaurants.

To try the local food in local restaurants is not always easy, since the menu is not always in both Chinese and English. But in these fast food restaurants, their menu is shown on the wall in big Chinese characters, and small English letters. So foreigners should have no problem ordering the food. Warn you though, the staff at the cashier is not always good in English and maybe you need to point at the menu to order the food. I saw this happen a few times already.

Second, the food is inexpensive and tastes quite okay. Well, it is fast food and so you shouldn’t expect too much anyway. Sometimes some dishes taste really good. Say the curry rice from the Cafe de Coral. These restaurants are always packed for lunch and dinner.

Third, their branches are in every corner of Hong Kong and you can easily find them.

Fourth, these restaurants not only offer Chinese food, but also “Chinese style” Western food, such as spaghetti, or “Chinese style” Japanese food, such as Ramin. The choice is not limited anyway. And the Chinese food choice also comes in Hong Kong style and mainland Chinese style, such as Shanghai food.

Fifth, visiting these restaurants will let you experience the epitome of Hong Kong efficiency. Try standing at the food counter and you will see how quickly the staff put the order together for customers and keep the always long queue moving. There are usually three to four staff working behind the counter and they work so fast, and so seamlessly. I bet you will not forget the scene.

Some more tips:Hong Kong style milk tea is unique. These restaurants offer tasty milk tea. So try them. Also, if you are on budget, try coming in from 2pm to 6pm. These are afternoon tea hours and the tea set is offered at a very low price. Say, a hot dog with a cup of milk tea costs about HK15.

Hong Kong East: Harbour View and Soho Feel

Visitors to Hong Kong are usually advised to take the Star Ferry from Central or Tsim Sha Tsui to see the Hong Kong harbor, especially at night when the skyline is lit. They are also told that the Soho area, the hot spot of trendy bars and restaurants, is in Central.

These are all true, except that Hong Kong has another spot where you can see the famous Hong Kong harbor as well as experience “Soho”. It is in Lai King Wan (鯉景灣) of Sai Wan Ho (西灣河), in the Eastern part of Hong Kong Island.

Take the MTR to Sai Wan Ho Station. Go out at Exit A, and turn right, to walk toward the waterfront (there are also signs indicating the direction). It is about 5-minute walk before you come to the waterfront and a long promenade. From here you can take in Hong Kong’s harbor and the Kowloon East across it. The promenade allows you to take a relaxing stroll while witnessing the daily life of locals.  You rarely see tourists here.

The area is also called “Soho East” where you will find a host of restaurants and bars adjacent to the waterfront. This Soho East is not as busy as the Soho area in Central because of its slightly remote location, but over the weekend, it attracts many locals to drive to this area for dining and relaxation.