Comforting home cooking
Located near the world famous Hong Kong Jockey Club in Happy Valley, Pang's Kitchen is a single Michelin starred Chinese restaurant in the mood of simple comfort Cantonese cooking. It had become the talk of the city when it was awarded a star back in late 2012, the owner claimed that the star was actually damaging his business instead of helping it as the landlord saw that as an opportunity to increase the rent and the restaurant was struggling to the demand, with limited covers (only 30) and short of staff to cope with all the new customers flooding in after hearing the result. Whatever the outcome, nowadays it seem like it has becomes bit of a destination for tourists as I noticed on my arrival.
As expected in a small Cantonese restaurant, space was limited and all the tables were very close together which isn't an ideal place for business or on a date. We went for a shared platter to kick off our meal, and it was great to see some real Cantonese snacks instead of the spring roll and prawn toast you would get in China Town. Both the lotus cake and taro roll had a soft and smooth texture with a thin and silky golden pastry layer. Braised tofu with Chinese mushroom was fairly standard on the other hand, however it wasn't too salty with the stock which is very common in a lot of mediocre Cantonese restaurants.
|tofu, lotus, taro, fishcake and jellyfish|
|braised tofu with Chinese mushroom|
The house special garlic ribs, deep fried in a wok but yet wasn't greasy, the surface was dry while the meat inside was moist and juicy, great depth of richness from the garlic and other spices without being overwhelming. The wok fried pepper beef with honey pea had a lovely peppery and nutty aroma, the beef was tender with good seasoning, the pea was crisp and sweet, a well executed classic dish.
|wok fried pepper beef with honey pea|
To sum it up, I think the cooking at Pang's Kitchen is definitely better than most of your average Cantonese eateries but not by a massive margin, in fact given the right ingredients and preparation, it won't be too hard to achieve similar standards of cooking in any local household. As at the end of the day, Pang's Kitchen's style is very traditional without any fancy techniques or luxury ingredients. It is all about comforting Cantonese cooking that family and friends like to share when getting together. Do bear in mind due to the popularity and limited space at Pang's Kitchen, booking is essential.
What I paid:
£22 per head with tea
Average cost without drinks and services :
£20 - £40
G/F, 25 Yik Yam Street, Happy Valley, Hong Kong
Click here for more Hong Kong restaurant reviews