Yat Lok Restaurant (一樂食館)

The same day that I visited Tim Ho Wan for dim sum, we also went to Yat Lok Restaurant for dinner. They are apparently famous for their roast goose and was featured in Anthony Bourdain’s No Reservations, however, it was at a different location (Tai Po location rather than the Central location that we went to). We ordered roast goose, roast pork, bbq pork, noodles, and rice.

1554591_10105628386440274_7214929809393095467_n

Enjoying dinner with Andrew and Lisa

The roast goose was amazing. It was so tender and juicy from the fat…haha. Everything else, I wouldn’t recommend. The roast pork was way too salty and the bbq pork really didn’t have enough flavor to it although the meat was really tender. The dry egg noodle was a bit bitter and nothing really special with the wonton noodles and choi sum. I felt that the place was overpriced. I don’t remember exactly how much it was but I think it was around $420 HKD or $54 USD for 3 people (we also ordered 2 drinks). I guess that doesn’t seem like a lot of money if you compare it to the U.S. but compared to other local places in HK, it is a bit more. I would only recommend coming here for the roast goose.

Yat Lok Restaurant (一樂食館) G/F, 28 Stanley Street, Central, Hong Kong (map)
Phone #: 2524 3882

Original location: G/F, Block A, Po Wah Building, 5 Tai Ming Lane, Tai Po (map)
Phone #: 2656 4732

Tim Ho Wan (添好運) – cheapest Michelin starred restaurant in HK!

Last Thursday, some friends were in town so we met up for Michelin starred restaurants in Hong Kong. The first one we went to was Tim Ho Wan in Shum Shui Po which is the cheapest Michelin starred dim sum place in Hong Kong. While waiting for my friends to arrive, I was sitting outside the restaurant talking to an old man next to me. Since it was a Thursday morning, there weren’t a line outside as there usually is on the weekends. The man was waiting for some carry-out and he seemed pretty lonely. He said that he called his friends to ask them to come out for dim sum but they were all busy playing mahjong. He told me that he lived near here and comes to this restaurant all the time. He told me to give him a call next time I’m here and he’d treat me to dim sum. He proceeded to give me his phone number but I didn’t copy it down. I was trying to ignore him since I really didn’t want to talk to him but he just keep on talking while I was on my cell phone. Anyways, my friends arrived so we went in and the man said “call me!”

Anyways, onto to the food reviews. In Tim Ho Wan, you have to mark what you want to order instead of carts coming around. I was a bit disappointed in that since ordering from carts is a part of the whole dim sum experience. The selection was quite limited but they had most of the basics on the menu. The price wasn’t too bad. We ordered 12 dishes and it ended up being around $240 HKD ($31 USD) for 3 people. The quality was good but I wouldn’t wait if there was a long line.

10299969_10105628381255664_6156030980942880848_n

10703729_10105628381465244_2750588419618109356_n

Vermicelli roll with bbq pork. I usually don’t like this dish that much but it was really good here! The vermicelli roll had a good texture to it – not too thick.

10660175_10105628382627914_7747896844801148151_n

Pan fried turnip cake

10625136_10105628382178814_1459047849783505357_n  Boiled lettuce

1525179_10105628381779614_7122786543834754578_n

Starting from far left and going clockwise: steamed dumplings (I don’t remember what was in it), egg cake, tofu, shrimp dumplings

1796581_10105628382902364_2831079553678345399_n

The famous BBQ pork buns. This was delicious but I felt that it had a bit too much sauce inside.

1800355_10105628382443284_2355091210537433626_n

Spare ribs

10517546_10105628383690784_4450832388286366702_n

Pumpkin sago dessert! This was really good with a hint of ginger taste.

1897880_10105628383910344_2256975555503542234_n

Bird nest soup with egg whites. This was really good as well! It took about 20 minutes to prepare but it was worth it.

10703691_10105628383196774_336319648081687373_n

Osmanthus flower jelly – this was also really good

Tim Ho Wan 9 Fuk Wing Street, Sham Shui Po, Hong Kong         Phone number: 2788 1226

We Found an Apartment!

After searching around and seeing many apartments, we finally found one and moved in last week. We are now living in Tsuen Tak Gardens in Tsuen Wan. It was pretty crazy how fast things went. Since I had free time (still waiting for my work visa to come in), I had appointments to see different apartments.

That day, I was looking at apartments in Tsuen Tak Gardens. We originally saw two apartments in this apartment complex and wasn’t too crazy because of the location; it’s in the industrial area there are are a lot of big buildings and trucks. Also, it takes about 15 minutes to walk to the subway station. However, what we did like was that the rent was cheaper and it was close to the harbor where dogs are allowed. Once I noticed that there was a direct bus that went to my school, I was all for it! If I didn’t take the bus, I would have to take the subway and then switch to the light rail to go to my school.

So I was looking at some apartments with this one realtor who only took 1/4 of the monthly rent as commission (normally, they take 1/2 of the monthly rent for commission). There was a two bedroom apartment that I liked because it had newly painted walls, some new furniture, and it had a little shared common area right outside of the kitchen where some neighbors wash their clothes and hang it up (kinda like a shared balcony). The handyman was still working on setting up the cabinets and furniture so it wasn’t available immediately. It would be available for us to move in when we wanted to but he may have to come in to finish a few things. The realtor showed me a few more places but I wasn’t too interested in them.

Afterwards, I met up with another realtor whom we have already met before, to see another apartment in the same apartment complex. This apartment was completely renovated with new tiled floor, kitchen, bathroom, and newly painted walls. I instantly loved it and what was even better was that it was a one bedroom apartment. Originally, it was like all the other ones where it came with two small bedrooms but instead of the second bedroom, the living room gets extended. There was really no use for us to have two bedrooms anyways. (All the previous realtors were pushing us to look at two bedroom apartments because they were slightly bigger and about the same price. But what’s the point of a second bedroom when you have no use for it?) So I took some pictures so that I could send to Seth and let the realtor know that I really liked it. I was the second person to see this apartment after it was completely renovated and this realtor’s company was the only company that the owner was working with. I knew that we had to act fast if we really wanted this place because places get rented out so quickly in Hong Kong.

So I sent the pictures to Seth to look at and I was going to walk around the area to get a better feel for around the area. Meanwhile, I get a call from the realtor asking if I was still around the area and whether I could meet with him back in the office. So I went back to this office and the owner of the apartment happened to be there. The owner took the day off of work because he wanted to see the final results of the renovation and get the keys back from the construction worker. I was pressured into deciding that day if we would like to rent the apartment. That was an awkward moment because I haven’t even talked to Seth about the apartment yet. So I was sitting at the table with the realtor and owner, and I was talking to Seth on the phone to see what he thought of the place. We talked for what seemed like a long time on the phone and decided that we were going to rent the place. Seth met up with us after work to sign all the paperwork and brought the money (2 months of deposit + 1/2 month’s rent for the realtor). Seth was having second doubts on the apartment since the walk to the apartment took so long and the area doesn’t have the prettiest views….but, we can now say that we like it.

IMG_20140925_152247

IMG_20140925_152254

IMG_20140925_152259

IMG_20140925_152304

IMG_20140925_152312

Seth bought a bike to ride to the station so now it takes him about 35 minutes to get to work. I’m not exactly sure how long it will take me to go to work but I assume that it would be about the same time. We have found some grassy areas that we can take Zoe to, unlike the other apartment complexes that we were interested in. There is a supermarket (Wellcome) and a Japan Home Center less than a 10 minute walk so that’s great. There are also busses that you can take to go to the subway stations.

So these days, we have been busy buying furniture and getting settled in our new apartment. We have bought a lot of second-hand furniture and my cousin’s friends has and will give us a few furniture items. Some useful sites are 28hse.com, GeoExpat, and AsiaXpat for those of you who are interested. There is an awesome app where you can hire a moving van called GoGo Van. It’s kinda like Uber but for vans. It’s super easy to use and you can almost instantly find someone last minute. It’s also quite cheap.

Well, we’ll update you with more pictures and a video once we have everything!

Trip to Seoul

Yikes! I just realized that I haven’t updated my blog for a month now. Well, mid-September, I took a week long trip to Seoul. I really missed it there with all the cheap and delicious food. Also, I missed my lovely friend Boram. I was able to stay at her parent’s place in Sillim and her parents adopted me into their family. They are so sweet and caring. Her dad even went out the night before to buy a new cot so that I could sleep comfortably! Just about every morning that I was there, her mom prepared breakfast for us with loads of food like bread, fruits, nuts, milk, and snacks. Boram even brought out her Ben’s Cookies for breakfast one time…lol. MMMmm, cookies for breakfast.

The trip was basically a food trip where we are constantly eating everything that I missed and more. Some of the highlights of this trip were:

– meeting up with old friends

10670117_10105509970162444_5866559654337345898_n

Junghyun, Boram and I wrote our names and a wish on a tile. Hopefully, when they build more temples, we will be able to see our names from above!

1510772_10105509963460874_7134680343804178451_n

The five peaks at Bukhansan

10446213_10105515283080314_2802711408840693078_o

YoungMi, Boram and I went out for Korean BBQ at first and then we had some pajeon and flavored makkoli afterwards. It was so good!

– cooking class (we made japchae and soon du bu chigae)

20140913_131239

DSCF7217

– potbingu (thanks Junghyun!)

10675678_10105544583077884_787158704925871664_n

– ice cream waffles (thanks Mr. Koo for introducing this to us)

20140912_224027

– Seoraksan

10613136_10105523247255044_3606106103606488334_n

10689744_10105523172963924_244033120757998893_n

– seafood meals

DSCF7371

DSCF7401

DSCF7403

For cooking shrimps, Koreans like to cook them on top of salt.

DSCF7404

DSCF7405

DSCF7412

DSCF7413

– cooking with Boram and Mrs. Koo

DSCF7421

We made one of my favorite dishes, taktoritang, which is chicken with potatoes and carrots in a sweet and spicy sauce. Also, we made haemul pajeon (seafood pancake) and vegetarian dwuenjon chiggae (soybean stew)!

– bubble show in Insadong

10644938_10105502387148864_1634514623661396100_n

– last, but not least, food!

DSCF7184 DSCF7187 DSCF7228 DSCF7256 DSCF7259 DSCF72601467426_10105523174570704_5158874893652072291_n 10620765_10105510455325174_9057814708759736362_n 10626606_10105544582479084_5218812356170465443_n 10686737_10105509940187514_5407962586502074828_n