Wednesday, October 12, 2016

[Just the mums] 4D3N Hong Kong & Macau Trip 2016

Yes just the moms this time. Apart from the US Trip in 2014, this is the second time I am away without the family. A very much needed breather, a break away from the vicious cycle of Vera's eczema because I felt depressed and it was sinking in further. I could tear out of the blue while I made my way for her treatment. I knew that I needed to go away, just a few days for a breather. I am lucky to have a supportive other half, Don had supportively asked me to look for a friend and go off for a few days. Very impromptu, he helped me booked the air tickets and accomodation and off I went, to the Land of Dim Sum.

Our stay was at The Cityview, a 2-minute walk from Yau Ma Tei MTR - 油麻地 . This is not the first time I am staying at this hotel. The location is very convenient and it's just a 5 mins walk to the bustling Mongkok where all the nice food and shopping were. From the airport, use the Airport Express Shuttle Bus for the free hotel connections. It is a free service and we were shuttled right to the entrance of the hotel.

Not going to talk much about shopping here becasue the main focus of the trip was purely going around for nice food and sight- seeing. Minority time was spent on shopping for sports wear. 

In less than 3 mins, there is an eatery near our hotel, serving breaskfast like shrimp wanton noodles and toast etc. I would say 80% of the wanton mee taste good just because it is in Hong Kong. The wantons are much bigger than the ones that were sold in Singapore. I forgot the name of this shop though.

We settled for a bowl of hot wanton noodles. The shrimp wantons were big and fresh!

Prior to the trip, I did make some homework on where to go for nice eats. But nothing beats getting to know a really friendly local who lives in Hong Kong and gave us his recommendations on the must eat around the area where we stayed. We were blessed indeed to have met one of the staff of The Cityview, Mr Eric Yap, someone who was warm and friendly and had readily recommended us the following:

1. Kam Wah Cafe【 金華冰廰】

Location : G/F, 47 Bute Street, Mongkok, Kowloon

This cafe is well known for their freshly baked egg tarts and polo buns. But among all the cafes we have visited, this is one we have the rudest encounter. Our first visit was a pleasant one but not the second.

We were brought to a table to be seated and ordered two drinks plus a polo bun [ 菠蘿包] . Guess what? We were asked to leave and pack the food instead just because we did not meet the minimum order requirement. We were pretty peeved of course because we felt that the customer service really sucks. Why can't we be seated since there are so many free tables at that point of time and given that there was no queue outside the cafe. Another point to note, be prepared to have your table shared with other patrons. You have to be comfortable with their table-sharing cultural.

Anyway, back to the must try dishes. The stir-fry beef slice noodles was good ! The slices were soft and tender while the noodles were springy. Portion was good enough to be shared among the two of us. Do order dishes to share so that you can order more variety to try.

牛肉炒公仔麺 - HKD 44

A must try for their award winning Puo Luo You (菠蘿油) and not forgetting the silky smooth, ice yuan yang - Iced coffee + tea.

得奬菠蘿油 + 鸳鸯奶茶

2. Australia Dairy Company【澳洲牛奶公司】

Location : G/F 47-49 Parkes Street, Jordan, Hong Kong
Nearest MTR : Jordan, go towards C2 exit and walk to your left down Bowring St, turn right at Parkes St
Opening hours: 0730-2300hrs daily, closed on Thursday

Look out for the big signboard or probably a queue cutting across a few shop units.

We were told that this is a must visit cafe for their steamed milk pudding and toast with scrambled eggs.

Those eggs were to die for ! The macaroni soup as well, simple as it seemed to be but once you take a sip of the very flavourful soup, be warned that you may just want to finish the whole bowl. Simple as it looked to be but it was really smooth and flavourful !

The char siew with no colouring. It did not look appealing initially (no colourings) but do not get deceived by the appearance. It was so tender and naturally sweet. I was secretly hoping that there are more slices !

We were warned before hand that the service and the staff of this cafe can be very rude and unfriendly.

Survical tips for you if you are visiting:
Tip #1:  Make up your mind fast on which item to order while you are standing in the queue to prevent the staff from scolding you if you take a long time to decide on your orders. We already have the dishes in mind as recommended. Eric told us to tell the staff we wanted "Cheung Chan" - 常 餐. We placed our orders within 3 mins after being seated.

Tip #2: Keep cool if you think that the staff is being rude to you. But trust me, they do not mean it, it is just their cultural and probably due to the lack of customer service training to provide with better customer service.

No doubt they will tell patrons off if they take too long to decide on their orders and they really have one kind of unfriendly look, with not much smile on their faces. But one of the staff was really kind. Imagine, the shop was fully occupied, one of the staff was really nice to pass me a chair for me to place it under the table as I was hugging it infront of me while I ate. This nice gesture will always be remembered.

For dim sum lovers ! Lo Dim serves equisitive dishes! The bamboo rice is a must order. Be prepared for some waiting time. Do not be like us, we actually queued outside without getting a number from the staff. We were thinking why some people who came after us managed to be seated first, not knowing that we had to get a number first.

3. Lo Dim 【老點點心竹筒飯】

Location : Shop A, G/F, 12-14A Yim Po Fong Street, Mongkok

旺角染布房街 12-14A號依利大夏地下A號舗

Tel: 2398 9992

鲜瑕肉餠竹筒飯 - HKD 30

鲜上肉響玲膓 - HKD 28

吾係老點小漢堡 - HKD 24

4. Tsui Wah Mongkok Branch 【翠華餐廰】

Location: G/F, 244 Portland Street, Hong Kong

Tel : +852 2392 3889

Operating hours: 24 hours

I had always love the 奶油猪仔包 from here. Breakfast sets have pretty limited choices, we ordered one of the bee hoon with pickled vegetables and pork slices in soup coupled with the crispy buttery bun and had the usual yuan-yang to go along.

It was still quite early after breakfast and #Auntymode was switched on. My friend suggested to visit supermarket as she would love to get some instant noodles (flavours that could not be found in Singapore)  and we got a bag-full of instant noodles back.

Another purchase from the convenience store near our hotel. What's so special ? I guess Singapore stores do not carry this BIG sized cup noodles. We were caught in a thunderstorm on one of the evenings, had no choice but to buy the cup noodles for dinner.

If you want to try the local delights like curry fishballs aka 鱼蛋, I find that the ones sold in the vicinity of Mongkok still taste the best.

If you love claypot rice, do not miss this at Temple Street. Most of the shops have a fixed price but be sure to ask for the price first if you are ordering crabs. We were recommended to try 煲仔饭 at 四季煲仔饭. Do expect a long queue in the evening.  Another mistake made and we missed the opportunity to try this.

5. Four Season Claypot Rice 【四季煲仔飯】

Location : No 46-58, Arthur Street, Yau Ma Tei
Yau Ma Tei MTR, Exit 3C  (Kwun Tong Line )


Operating hours: 6pm - 12am


The mistake was, I thought I could have heard the name wrongly and stepped into 興記 instead because we spotted a few shops with the same name, not knowing that the actual one we were looking for it's located at the next street.

6. Hing Kee Restaurant 【興記菜館】

Location : G/F, 14, 19, 21 Temple Street & 48 Arthur Street, Yau Ma Tei

油麻地廟街14, 19, 21 號  及鴉打街 48 號

Operating hours: 6pm - 1am

Same same but different, we managed to try the claypot rice and ordered a side dish to share.

If you love Tzhi Char, you will definately fall in love with the 大排挡 in Hong Kong. Do check out Sham Shui Po 【深水埗】, there are a few in that vicinity.

Forget about Jenny's cookies, we were recommended by Eric to get palmiers 【 蝴蝶酥】instead from Cookies Quartet.

7. Cookies Quartet 【曲奇四重奏】

Location : 10 Carnarvon Rd, Tsim Sha Tsui, Hong Kong  (Tsim Sha Tsui MTR, Exit D2)

尖沙咀加拿分道10B 號嘉芬大夏地下E號舗

Tel: +852 2311 5119

There were a few flavours to choose from but I still prefer the original butter palmiers which were crisp on the outside yet the flaky palmiers crumbled in my mouth when I sank my teeth in. In terms of weight they are much friendlier than carrying the tins of Jenny cookies. There are a few outlets around, do make a google for their location. We went to the outlet at Tsim Sha Tsui. Click HERE for the address for other outlets.

We were told to try Eggroll Queen 【蛋卷皇后】instead of the others like 奇崋 which he deemed that those brands are too commercialized and the standard would not be as good as in the past. We did not go to this shop but if you would like to, the shop is at :

8. Eggroll Queen 【蛋卷皇后】

Location: Shop A, G/F, 19 Yim Po Fong Street, Mongkok

旺角染布房街19 號地下A舗

Tel: 3171 5228

Operating hours: 12pm- 9pm

We had an evening getting ourselves lost in Central to look for the Air Jordon shop. We found it evetually after walking "miles". If you are a fan of these shoes, come by this shop. Then, we found out the shortest route to the shop, which is at Central MTR - 中環站, Exit D1. Turn right after you exit, go straight and cross the road to the opposite, walk up the slope and you will reach the store. You should see this building here, opposite Air Jordon shop, location: 8 Wellington Jordon

Anyway, since we were in the vicinity, we step into Yung Kee for our dinner with the intention of ordering their famous roasted goose of course.

9. Yung Kee Restaurant 【鏞記酒家】

Location: Yung Kee Building, 32-40 Wellington St, Central, Hong Kong

Tel: +852 2522 1624 

10. Tai Chong Bakery 【泰昌餠家】

Location: G/F, 35 Lyndhurst Terrace, Shop C

I read that apart from the egg tarts, other pastries like 沙翁 (Sha Weng) and 皮蛋酥 (Pi Dan Su) are a must try too !

It ends it business at 9pm.

We were supposed to try 【一点心】as per my friend's recommendation. We woke pretty early thinking that all shops that sell dim sum would operate early and headed to the branch near Prince Edward MTR - 太子 (Exit A) , opposite Wing Sum Building - 荣森大夏 but was disappointed that the shop was not open. Big mistake for not checking out the operating hours.

11. One Dim Sum 【一点心】

Location: Shop 1 & 2, G/F, Kenwood Mansion, 15 Playing Field Road, Prince Edward


Operating hours:
Monday to Friday: 11am – 12.30 midnight.
Saturday to Sunday: 10am – 12.30 midnight.

12. Tao Heung Restaurant 【稻香超級渔港】

It's a must for me to visit Tao Heung for Dim Sum whenever I visit Hong Kong. You can google for the outlets depending on where you stay. I went to the one at Nathan Road. Since it's only the two of us and my friend was a pretty small eater. We ordered some of the below for sharing.

皮蛋瘦肉粥 - Century Egg with Lean Meat Porridge

原蝦焼賣皇 - Siew Mai (Prawn) 


炸釀茄子 - Stuffed brinjal

This what what we have been exploring for the 4 days trip (including one day trip to Macao, to be blogged later)
I have to give compliments when it's due to the person who thoroughly deserves it. After checking out, Eric saw that I was holding two bags of souvenirs (perishable items). He was really thoughtful and immediately told me that he would get me a box to hold my biscuits so that I could carry them with ease without having to worry that they may get squashed when I stowed them up in the compartment onboard.

He had really great organising skills. He arranged and packed the palmiers and other foodstuff nicely into the box, tied the box up with the strings. He was so thoughtful to the extend that he even made a "handle" so that my fingers would not be hurt from the prolonged carrying. The Cityview, you had got yourself a star worker, Eric is truly a gem!

This is not the first time I visited Hong Kong. We visited in 2009 with Xav and I think in 2014 with my inlaws (Not blogged but we stayed in The Cityview). There is always something new to try and of course going back to the same trusty shops for our favourite food.

One thing about travelling without the kids, we can walk for all we wanted without having to handle the whines and tantrums. But one thing for sure when I travel on my own without Don, I had to do my own homework.  From googling for reviews and jotting down directions on how to get there, it's all in this handy notebook which I brought along.

Just happened that Adora from Life Is For Exploring shared her tips for solo female travellers, I thought it is pretty useful too for ladies who wish to go on solo trips.

I hope this makan guide is useful for those of you who may be planning for a Hong Kong Trip at the end of the year or probablyan impromptu trip after the end of the semestral exams to reward yourselves for working hard with the kids.=)

If you have any nice makan spots in Hong Kong, leave me a comment too !

Thank you for reading and if you would like to stay tune for future updates, do follow me on Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram !

Disclaimer: This is a non sponsored post and all the above including the flight and accomodation are purely paid out of my own pocket.


Madeline Heng said...

Food, food, food! Can't go Hong Kong and not eat every 2 hours hahah =D

xavvy said...

@ Madeline: Ikr !! I was just reading your post this noon and was hoping am right there hahaha !

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...