Saturday, August 14, 2010

Hong Kong - Star of Canton 利寶閣

With the proliferation of new malls in the TST area, comes a natural consequence of new places to eat at.  So with a nudge and recommendation from fellow colleagues, we take a walk to iSquare to try Star of Canton, perched on the 24th floor of iSquare with great views of HK island.  Even on an overcast day, it's pretty cool, so should be awesome in the evenings, when our city's lights come on.

The serving staff are certainly from Heichinrou since true to form, our Ms T was greeted by just about everyone in the restaurant.  So it's no fair to talk about service here.  Someone needs to come incognito to rate that piece.

Since we came at lunch, we ordered a bunch of dim sum to share.

Cool and crunchy jelly fish heads in a sesame oil and scallion dressing accompanied by cucumber chunks were a delight to start.  Jelly fish heads were crunchy yet easy to bite through, probably having been soaked and re-soaked to attain the texture.  Of course, dressing was fragrant and tasty and overall, ensured we stayed cool as cucumbers on a humid day.

Cheong fun with dried shrimps were decent and served prettily in a long plate rather than stacked.  Some aesthetic value here and while tasty, unspectacular.

Since there were 6 of us, we order a lunch combo also of grouper and bittergourd on crispy noodles.  Sauce and noodles were served separately ensuring the noodles stayed extra crispy and survived the walk from kitchen to table.  This was tasty even if noodles were a little greasy - we saw the film of oil on the bottom of the plate after we finished the noodles.  Oops - too late.

The other duo in the combo was the baby Chinese cabbage in a sweet fish stock and chopped tomatoes.  The tomatoes were a nice touch, keeping the stock fresh and light but still tasty.  Of course, it's a health bonus to the yummy noodles we had, and in our minds, neutralized the oil there.

The deep fried batted milk fish was also very good.  Named milk fish for good reason, this fish literally melts in your mouth and is a nice creamy contrast to the crispy batter.  Always a yummy way to enjoy a cold beer although we more than made-do with our Pu'r tea.

Our special order of the crispy pork bun akin to a bo lor or pineapple bun was pretty decent, especially if you like the fragrance of butter.  Very crispy to the point before flaky, it was a nice variation to the traditionally steamed bun although we liked the Snow mountain bun at Victoria City better.

For sweets, we tried the alkali dumpling with lotus seed paste.  This was deceptive in its plain Jane looks.  The lotus seed paste was extremely good and not at all cloying.  The generous use of dried fruit peel to give it texture, fragrance and reprieve was well executed and we finished this one without regret. Yums!

The dessert platter was a quite a spectacle.  I'm not a huge fan of these types of sweets but the Osmanthus flower jello was actually very good.  Aside from Osmanthus, the presence of wolfberries and snow fungus in the jello made it very fresh and enjoyable.  Especially after a heavy yum cha lunch.  I took mini bites from the sweet fritters laced with honey (蛋散)or what I call a Chinese Churro were pretty good too.

Overall, a decent place to yum cha if you're in the area.  Certainly one of the more enjoyable and comfortable places in TST to enjoy Hong Kongers favorite pastime.

Shop 2401, 24/F, iSquare
63 Nathan Road
Tsim Sha Tsui
Tel: +852-2799 9368

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