Sunday, December 19, 2010

Eating Hong Kong: Jasmine at Festival Walk

Growing up in Hong Kong, I did dim sum so often with my family that I usually find the whole experience pretty monotonous.  If I never see a shumai or hargow in my life, I'd be just fine.  But there are two restaurants in Hong Kong where I really don't mind doing dim sum: Dynasty in the Renaissance Harbor View in Wan Chai and Jasmine in the Festival Walk shopping complex in Kowloon Tong.

Jasmine features a fusion dim sum menu with dishes that are as lovely to look at as they are delicious to eat.  Delicious enough, in fact, that I'm willing to take a 30-minute long subway ride and to shove my way through Hong Kong's most obnoxious mega-mall to get there.

The specialty at Jasmine is its roast suckling pig.  (I know, I know.  This is a Chewish blog.  But if I were to keep kosher in Hong Kong, I'd starve.  Plus everyone needs something for which to repent on Yom Kippur.)  Anyway, back to the piglet: imagine unbelievably crispy skin overlaying a thin, unctuous layer of savory fat and tender meat, with a slathering of the most ridiculously tasty sweet and tangy barbecue sauce on the underside of the bone.  St. Louis has nothing on this barbecue.

The suckling pig is pretty unbelievable, but perhaps even better than that is the garlic beef cubes.  The dish consists just of small cubes of filet mignon and fried garlic slices, so I lack explanation for why it's so awesome.  It probably has something to do with the marinade, which is some wicked combo of Maggi and other umami-ful magic.

THE most delectable dish, though, is the cold eggplant in sesame sauce.  Again, this is a really simple dish: cooked eggplant tossed in a sesame-flavored dressing.  But the sesame dressing (which is probably just Japanese sesame salad dressing mixed with Japanese sweet mayo) is unbelievable.  You could probably cover cardboard with this dressing, and it'll still taste delicious.  This eggplant is so good that my sister and I usually request two orders of it and still have to fight over who gets to lick the dish.

Aside from the above highlights, there are a ton of other yummy dishes at Jasmine, including an airy pumpkin layer cake that is indescribably good.  Since my interest is primarily in the dishes I can recreate at home, I leave it up to my sister, the real food blogger in the family, to acquaint you with some of the other winning dishes at Jasmine on her blog.

Are you a fan of dim sum?


sandy December 19, 2010 at 10:23 PM  

I am a huge fan and I haven't tried fusion dim sum! That sounds amazing, esp. the suckling pig!

lavenderpug December 20, 2010 at 12:01 PM  

oh those dishes look amazing. i love dim sum!

Katie December 23, 2010 at 8:24 AM  

Oh YUM. That pumpkin cake looks so delish!

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