Monday, December 21, 2015

Goosey goosey gander

Day 2 (Mon, 14 December 2015)

This was a truly relaxing trip, aimed at recuperation. Most days, we woke up late and went for brunch. We would return to our apartment for a rest in the afternoon, before heading out again for early dinner. Hence, we had only two meals a day (with snacks in between) and the biggest advantage to this arrangement was that we avoided the breakfast, lunch and dinner peak periods.

This morning, we wanted to have dim sum, so we decided to go to Tim Ho Wan. We chose the Olympian City branch so we could also do a little shopping after. It turned out to be a great decision as there was no queue and no waiting time when we arrived just before 11am.

The food here is so much better than that at the Singapore branches, especially the char siew bun. Super light and flaky pastry with a juicy filling...yummm. Prices are much better too! For some reason, the Tim Ho Wan prices here are almost equivalent to those from the neighbourhood dim sum places and lower than typical mall restaurants.

After lunch, we did a spot of shopping at Uniqlo and H&M. Note: The Uniqlo prices in HK are at least 10% lower than those in Singapore, not sure why. We bought a fleece jacket for Andre at only HK$99 (about S$18!)

We were amused to discover that there's a Food Republic at the ground floor of Olympian City! Decided to stop for a cup of coffee.

In HK, milk tea is the practically the national drink and Andre had copious amounts of the iced version wherever we went. However, Kenneth and I still prefer our local kopi and teh by a mile. So we had a cuppa at Toast Box and Andre had his iced milo. I was startled by the prices - almost S$3 for one cup of kopi! But I realised that this was normal by local standards. Even in the hole-in-the-wall stalls (dingier conditions than our Singapore coffeeshops), most drinks, including tea and coffee, are at least HK$15 (about S$2.70). Makes our S$1.20 kopi at coffeeshops back home sound very cheap.

Back to the apartment for a rest and for dinner, we were very focused - it was time for goose! And where else but Yat Lok at Stanley Street. We took the MTR to Central and got detracted by the gorgeous Christmas installation at the Landmark.

But back to the goose! We arrived at Yat Lok at about 6pm and the place was PACKED. They squeezed us in a booth seat next to a couple of strangers. In HK, it's commonplace to share tables with strangers but this was so squashed we had no elbow room whatsoever. As Lesley-Anne put it, she had to eat like a praying mantis. Another reason to avoid peak periods.

We ordered half a goose and some char siew. We wanted to add an additional goose drumstick but were told it was all out.


I'm not too fond of HK's char siew - it doesn't come with sauce and it has a stronger taste, similar to lup cheong (Chinese sausage). But my kids love it. The goose, on the other hand, was heavenly. Greasy, tasty and roasted to perfection.

Prices have gone up significantly since Lesley-Anne and I were here a year and a half ago. Back then, a goose drumstick with rice was HK$74. It's now HK$88 and I expect prices will rise again very soon.

We'd left space in our tummies because just down the road is Honolulu Cafe, home of the best egg tarts around.

Just look at those golden, glistening beauties!

Our original intention was just to have tea and egg tarts but all resolve flew out of the window when we saw the extensive menu. Andre suddenly decided he was ready to have a second dinner. We ordered two pork chop buns (which he strangely declared as tasting "like a McChicken")...

...two pineapple buns (which has nothing to do with pineapples!) A pineapple bun (HK$11) is a soft bun with a sweet, flaky top crust, served with a slice of butter. Delicious melt-in-your-mouth texture.

"That doesn't look like a pineapple!"

And four egg tarts (HK$9 each) with milk tea and a watercress drink.

These were the three stages of egg tart tasting for Andre: 1) Disbelief

2) Confirmation

 3) Pure joy

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