There are two things Hong Kong is notorious for: FOOD and SHOPPING.
There is no doubt that Hong Kong is the dining capital of Asia. A number of Michelin-awarded restaurants are just waiting to be visited and even those eateries on the side of the streets are worth the try. Not to mention, almost every brand we know are found in Hong Kong. Plus, everything’s relatively cheaper! You can shop til’ you drop!
Growing up in a Filipino-Chinese family, Hong Kong has always been like a second home. It has been a destination of family trips and reunions and a home of some relatives. So, you could say that Hong Kong is close to my heart. I just love coming back there to try new food and shop at my favorite stores that are not yet opened in the Philippines (which are currently decreasing in number as we speak).
If you follow my Instagram, you probably saw that I visited HK with my mom a few weeks ago. Since it was summer break and I had nothing to do, my mother and I decided to have a mother-daughter bonding in HK as a ‘last hoorah’ for the summer (but we all know it’s not the last chos!).
I always joke to my mother the hashtag: #AbetandDesireeStrikeAgain whenever we do any of our shenanigans together because, as what I’ve said before (or maybe I didn’t lol sorry), we’re partners in crime! Yes, Abet and Desiree, the twins, the mother-daughter duo of the Ong family, made ariba in HK! We promised each other that we’ll eat at all the places we want to eat during our 4-day trip to Asia’s gastronomic haven!
The adventure starts now!
First stop: Mott 32
Mott 32 is a collaboration between renowned Chef Fung and Malcolm Wood. Mott 32 got its name from 32 Mott Street in New York, where the first Chinese convenience store was opened in 1851. Mott 32 prides itself in its farm-to-table cooking of Cantonese cuisine with some signature Beijing and Sichuan dishes. One of their most celebrated dishes is their Peking duck roasted in both the Cantonese and Beijing method. However, the Peking duck has to be pre-ordered upon reservation, which in our case, was rendered 2 weeks prior to our visit. I suggest booking a table at least 2 weeks before your desired date if there’s no holiday as such in our case, but if it’s Christmas season, then definitely book at least a month before. You can make an overseas call to them or email them for reservations.
With all the rave and awards this restaurant has gotten, it was certainly not to be missed!
How we got there: MTR
One of the reasons why I love going back to HK is their very systematic MTR. I always ride the MTR because it’s such a convenient mode of transportation in HK, and you won’t get lost either because the signs are strategically placed. The MTR station is very clean and it’s so chill even if you’re brisk walking. Another thing I love about the MTR is that establishments are so near; just across or beside the exit of the MTR station, and most establishments even have pathways leading directly to the MTR station 😀
There are three areas in Hong Kong that we always frequent:
1. Causeway Bay – the heart of HK’s shopping scene where you can find SOGO, Lee Gardens, Hysan Place, Times Square, and the humongous Forever 21 (which I think is the only Forever 21 in Hong Kong; weird because in every SM mall here we have a Forever 21).
2. Tsim Sha Tsui – world-class bazaar and home of high-end fashion brands where you can see people lining up in stores such as Hermes and Chanel. This is also where HK’s biggest shopping mall Harbour City is located. If Forever 21 is prominent in Causeway Bay, then H&M is the prominent one in Tsim Sha Tsui, although there’s an outlet in Causeway Bay as well.
3. Central – living up to its name, it’s the central business district of Hong Kong. Here you’ll find famous fine dining restaurants such as L’Atelier de Joël Robuchon (I had such a wonderful dining experience here!) located in the equally known The Landmark and there’s also the ifc mall – the home of HK’s Apple Store. And yes, this is where we can find Mott 32.
Mott 32 is located in the Standard Chartered Bank Building just across the ‘K’ exit of the MTR station in Central. This time, we stayed at Tsim Sha Tsui. Central is just two stops away from the Tsuen Wan Station of Tsim Sha Tsui. It’s super easy to get there and our total travel time was only about 20 minutes (including all the walking and purchasing of tickets).
Once you go inside the Standard Chartered Bank Building, you’ll immediately see the Mott 32 sign and the receptionist will ask you if you have a reservation. Upon confirmation, you will then be ushered downstairs on a grand staircase leading to the dining area.
KaVOGUE ng staircase! Made me wanna sing Chandelier while going down charaught!
Sorry malabo, it was so dark and the lights blurred the photo NKKLK (hi mom)
WOW was what registered in my mind the moment I saw the place. I love love love the interior! It’s so fancy, classy, and it had a Great Gatsby feel to it, like I was in the 20s! No wonder it got awarded with the World Interior of the Year Award in the 2014 Inside Festival. Joyce Wang certainly did a great job in designing the place!
Behind the scenes of the Peking duck making
Lovely ambience! ❤
Before we go into the food part, I MUST FIRST SHOW YOU THE BATHROOM. My my my, I have heard so much about their bathroom that I had to see it for myself. So, even if I didn’t really have to go to the bathroom, I went there just for the sake of seeing it with my own eyes!
Guys, I fangirled.
GUYSSSSSSSSS. POTTERHEADS. THE MOMENT I WENT INSIDE I HAD TO SUPPRESS MY SQUEALS.
See for yourself (*insert squeals, asdfghjkl, and !!!!!*):
OMG I FOUND THE CHAMBER OF SECRETS
NO NEED FOR TOM RIDDLE’S DIARY THAT’LL JUST TELL YOU ‘NO’
Womens’ cubicles on the left and mens’ on the right (parang prefect lang?)
THE FLUSH AND THE LAMP THINGY ARE SO MEDIEVAL. AND THERE ARE STONE BRICKS AS WELL. EYELOVEIT.
Here’s the thing, when I entered the bathroom I immediately snapped a pic of the chamber of secrets lababo and went inside the cubicle. I fangirled inside because I felt like I was in Hogwarts, then I started taking pictures, when SUDDENLY the door opened and a woman screamed (siya pa talaga nagscream no?) and closed the door immediately, then I was like oookayyy.
GUYS. I FORGOT TO LOCK THE DOOR BECAUSE OF TOO MUCH FANGIRLING. DON’T BE LIKE THIS CARELESS POTTERHEAD.
Anyways, I wasn’t even using the cubicle I was just there for viewing and photo purposes.
Then I awkwardly walked towards the lababo after I was done and I was kinda assuming it wouldn’t work (I also tried the flush and it did work, much to my surprise, well DUH it’s a flush of the 21st century of course it will work Desiree), and it did and I WAS STOKED because I was washing my hands with THE LABABO OF ALL TIME namsayin, but there was an attendant present who handed me tissues after I was done washing my hands, so I had to be civilized and was like *ahem* ‘where’s the rubbish bin’? (just kidding I think it was more along the lines of ‘where do I throw away the tissues?’) Turns out, they also have the holes usually seen beside the sinks where you throw away the trash, but theirs was a subtle rectangular hole on the wall opposing the CoS lababo that looked like a design of some sort. NKKLK.
That bathroom experience was what some would call ‘a lifetime in a moment‘ charaught.
Kavouge ka talaga Joyce Wang, hands down my favorite bathroom ever!
My mom ordered for us while I was away fangirling in the bathroom (pagbigyan ang bagets), she had to use her phone flashlight to see the menu because it was really dark! She ordered the highly acclaimed BBQ Prime Iberico Pork Char Siu (limited daily), Wok Fried Kale, and Fried Rice with Preserved Sausage and Dried Shrimp since we already pre-ordered the Apple Wood Roasted Peking Duck.
Hello~ See it was so dark? Haha~
Barbecue Prime Iberico Pork with Yellow Mountain Honey (HK$295.00). I’d give this:
The Iberico Pork was really really sweet and flavorful! However, it tasted like those typical pork BBQs we have here in the Philippines to be honest. Still good nonetheless.
Wok Fried Kale, Dried Shrimp, Minced Pork, Shrimp Paste (HK$140.00). I’d give this:
I have mentioned before that I don’t like eating vegetables right? BUT WOW! The Wok Fried Kale was so good, especially with the shrimp paste! Love love love this!
Fried Glutinous Rice, Preserved Sausage, Dried Shrimp (HK$180.00). I’d give this:
The fried rice was simple yet full of flavors, with the saltiness coming from the sausage and complimenting the shrimp! 😀
aaaaaaaanddddd *drum rolls*
Apple Wood Roasted Peking Duck ($HK580.00). I’d give this:
AND MORE IF I COULD!
THIS PEKING DUCK IS INSANELY DELICIOUS. They serve you the skin first, to be dipped on brown sugar, then the inner meat, to be paired with the garlic sauce, and then a combination of both with the Hoisin sauce. The skin was extremely crispy! The meat was so tender and it blended well with the garlic sauce and the Hoisin sauce. My mom loved putting them all together inside mandarin pancakes. First, she dabs some Hoisin sauce and garlic sauce on the steamed pancake, then she puts some vegetables , the meat and the skin, and finally she wraps the pancake. I loved the skin the most, the crispiest I’ve ever had! ❤ Such a great value for how much meat there was as well!
Man, I was so full from all of those!
Mott 32 has a fabulous interior, delightful ambience, and the most amazing Peking Duck! It’s undoubtedly one of the best Chinese restaurants I’ve been at! If you want to taste the best Peking duck in Hong Kong, definitely head to Mott 32.
Standard Chartered Building
4-4a Des Voeux Road, Central, Hong Kong
Opening Hours: 12:00pm – 3:00pm for dimsum lunch daily, 6:00-11:00pm for dinner daily.
Budget: About HK$1100.00 for two people (if you’re ordering the duck).
More to come in my Hong Kong Hustle Travel Series!