me and my friends have this unique take on food; which apparently can be applied on other things too, like sex perhaps; if its dirty its almost always good =)
ever since i had gotten myself scholarly educated about food some two years and 20 kilos ago(yes people there is such education, for a country to progress some kids are raised and educated to make modern skycrapers, some to formulate new vaccines to cure cancer and pimples, and some devote countless sleepless nights in figuring that lechon skin can be crispier when pricked before roasting) my definition of travel and adventure has broaden.
Before, i was all consumed with beaches and beers on my travels, now i give equally importance to balut… and sisig… and lechon.
so on my recent travel to hongkong, the highlight of the trip was food and ok; Disneyland. the food was outstanding unfortunately the latter was a letdown.
Hongkong is an eclectic mix of old and new, complex and simple, luxurious and basic. extreme contrasts of some sorts. from the simple island village in taipa to the millionaires lofts in Repulse Bay; from bargain shops in Stanley market to signature boutiques like Gucci and Prada. from dai pai dongs to famed Michelin starred restaurants in Fours Seasons and Shangri-la. i don’t mean to belittle 5star hotel restos, but definitely those $10 pig innards stew is way flavorful and aromatic than roast beef and roast duck combined. no kidding, you can unmistakably make out the smell of the stew one block away from their stall. its that aromatic =)
the highlight of the whole trip was the famed Michelin-starred restaurant Tim Ho Wan. it is a hole-in-the-wall tucked in a nondescript part of kowloon. if you cant read chinese, like me, just walk along kwong wa street and you wont miss the crowd lining up outside. wait time is 1-2hrs and sometimes it could stretch to 3( yes people, your flight from the philippines to hongkong surprisingly takes a shorter time than lining up to go inside Tim Ho Wan.) it was my first ever michelin experience and it did not disappoint. price is reasonable at $10-$20/dish. i love the atmosphere inside(para ka lang nasa karinderya) its jampacked, its small, its noisy. among the crowd-favorite are Sticky rice in lotus leaf and Baked Barbecued Pork Bun Pastry. additional orders of siu mai, spare ribs, prawn dumplings plus tea costed us $78 or $87 for the two of us. thats a small amount to pay to fill a stomach of a person,(with person i meant patay gutom) with such fine quality of food.
another restaurant worth lining up for is Australian Dairy and, good god, we did line up. line was long that it reached the corner of another street. they make scrambled egg a gourmet dish here =)
with the hours spent on lining up for these restaurants, we could have visited china already… mainland china. but of course i will trade the great wall for food, history? food? id pick fried pig intestines in a heartbeat anytime. hehe. paborito ko talaga.
hongkong is a haven for streetfood enthusiasts. food are so aromatic it could shock your senses. straightforward and bold. and food presentation is definitely not on their menu.
the best thing about hongkong is definitely their dimsum. tatambling ka sa dami. wide-array of yummy to weird-looking dishes neatly stocked in bamboo containers. from your typical har gau and siu mai to chicken feet to fish head. and here the way to go is point-and-shoot. you point to the dish and you eat it. no need for memorizing all those chinese names (those train station names is too much already.) which they wouldnt understand just the same if you pronounce it with your filipino or fake english accent. cmon, sanay naman tayong pinoy sa turo-turo style, kunyari pa… haha…