Fire(works) and Ice

I had a charming evening last night with a local friend. We also met up with two of her  friends who did exchanges with NUS during semester 1. Since I studied at NUS in semester 2, I didn’t know them before.

We had dinner in Wan Chai. Before meeting up with the group, I walked around the neighbourhood. Wan Chai was right along the July 1st demonstration route.

Photo from around Admiralty further along the route, west of Wan Chai.

Market in Wan Chai.

Historical pawn shop.

We had dinner in a local cha chaan teng 華星冰室, called Capital Cafe in English. It is apparently the 2012 top ranked restaurant in Wan Chai on OpenRice. OpenRice is similar to Yelp in that individuals post reviews on various restaurants. The majority are Chinese reviews, but there are some English ones, just not as many.

The four of us split two set meals and added on a couple other dishes.

Macaroni in chicken broth with BBQ pork (hidden). My mom used to make something similar to this when I was younger whenever I was sick. In this dish, the macaroni was soft. The only flavour came from the soup and pork. The noodles were bland, but I liked it because it reminded me of my childhood.

Scrambled eggs, ham and perfectly crispy toast.

We added on the condensed milk and butter on a “piggy” (direct Cantonese translation) bun, also known as “crispy bun.” This was the highlight of the meal. The bun was large and still crunchy even after all the butter spread on top. It was lightly sweetened by the condensed milk. This might have been the best “nai yau joo”* I’ve had in HK.

We also added scrambled egg on buttered toast. It was fluffy and smooth, similar to the one at Australia Dairy. I don’t think I can handle so much butter in my eggs though.

It was interesting to speak with more HK people my age. For example, I learned that they usually don’t go to cha chaan tengs for dinner with friends.

Then it was time to see the fireworks. The fireworks were fantastic, maybe to give a good show to President Hu Jintao? That said, I rarely see fireworks in Canada, haha.

View of Kowloon from Wanchai.

We walked over to Causeway Bay for dessert at 五代同堂 (Five Generations Desserts). Loved the atmosphere of HK streets at night.

We shared chocolate shaved ice with chocolate rice crispies, chocolate shavings, lychee and marshmallows. The shaved ice was refreshing — the ice was finely shaven, not course such as in a slushie or Southeast Asian desserts.  This was dense and creamy yet not too filling. The combos with the toppings were interesting, to say the least! The rice crispies actually went well with the shaved ice.

We also had taro shaved ice with grass jelly (a herbal sort of jelly dessert), cornflakes, lychee and redbean. The cornflakes and the grass jelly didn’t match with the taro, but I liked the red bean. I preferred the taro flavour over the chocolate because it was more subtle.

We finally shared a “flaming snow mountain” which I thought was baked Alaska. Unfortunately, this was unpleasant. The meringue part tasted like foamy lime marshmallow and  was just too sweet. There was some cake and ice cream inside, which were decent though sweet. Well, you can’t win them all. I would love to have the shaved ice again.

Capital Cafe is located at Shop B1, G/F, Kwong Sang Hong Building, 6 Heard Street, Wan Chai, Hong Kong. The business card says this is called “Chrisly Cafe,” but this returns no results on Google.

五代同堂 (Five Generations Dessert) is located at Shop G11, G/F, Elizabeth House, No. 250-254 Gloucester Road, Causeway Bay, Hong Kong. Note that there is no English signage, although there is English on the menu (e.g. “flaming snow mountain”).

* How the Cantonese sounds to my ears.

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Filed under City, Food, Reviews, Travel

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