Traveling Solo in BKK | Eat Like a Local

“Most travel, and certainly the rewarding kind, involves depending on the kindness of strangers, putting yourself into the hands of people you don’t know and trusting them with your life. This risky suspension of disbelief is often an experience freighted with anxiety.”

While travel writer Paul Theroux put himself in the hands of a driver at the border of Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan in 2006 (read Ghost Train to the Eastern Star), I was lucky to have met Book, my “personal foodie guide” who’d spent two days and nights with me exploring the city (and also cared to send me back to the hostel in the middle of the night).

 

Our first meal was a pleasant lunch at his go-to place for a relaxed meal — Khao Jao Bangkok in the hip and trendy Thonglor. As this is a district where most Japanese expats hang out at, not only that the menu is trilingual, but also the simple, home-like interior made use of the natural sunlight and is decorated with furnitures made of reclaimed wood as well as anime toys and figures. “Khao jao” means long grain rice.

 

Thai Papaya Salad, Stir-fried Salted Turnip with Eggs, Stir-fried Minced Pork with Black Olives; Khao Jao, Bangkok Starting with the smaller dishes, Thai Papaya Salad (THB80) was fresh and excitingly hot. Book says the spice generally defines Southern Thai cuisine.

Stir-fried Salted Turnip with Eggs (THB70-80?) was nice but quite ordinary to me in terms of the texture and the taste. I’d say it’s best to have a bowl of rice to with it, to tone down its excess saltiness.

Stir-fried Minced Pork with Black Olives (THB70-80?) too reminded me of a Chinese home-cooked dish that’s essentially the same. Salty and spicy, very flavorful, cooked with seasoned minced pork and chopped water spinach.

 

Green Curry Fried Rice with Fish (THB80) came with this pronounced flavors of fragrant Thai herbs and was slightly spicy, but after a few spoonful I felt that it’s a tad bit drying in the mouth. Rice with green curry on the side might have been a better option.

Pork Spare Ribs Spicy Soup (THB80) was a tasty clear soup, with the sour-spiciness of Tom Yum that whetted my appetite. But I couldn’t have more than one bowl because it’s too hot to bear!

 

On another day, Book brought me to Victory Monument. We walked along the skywalk upon exiting from the MRT, looking at the military monument on our left that stood in the middle of a roundabout.

It didn’t take long until we turned right into a canal bridge with street food stalls lined up on both sides, and saw Best Boat Noodles (orange uniform) and Ruathong Noodles (pink uniform), which I preferred better.

 

They stay true to the tradition of serving in small portions when this could avoid spilling when eating on the wobbly boats, and it actually makes the experience super fun because when your noodles are gone in two slurps, and you order more and can form a stack of bowls next to you in no time!

The splash of pig’s blood broth was savoury in Thai Noodles with Pork Meatballs (THB12) and Thai Noodles with Beef Meatballs (THB12). I thought a pinch of chilli flakes added excitement.

 

The bigger bowls were the delicious Stewed Beef Noodles topped with coriander and deep fried garlic that reminded me of famous ones from Taiwan, and the rich, sweet and creamy Khao Soi (Coconut Curry Noodle Soup with Chicken) with strands of fried egg toppings that gave me an idea of Northern Thai cuisine, a reverse of the piquant food down south.

 

Me finishing everything; Ruathong Noodles, Bangkok With local Thais around me, I knew I was at the right place. And as you can see, I had altogether 4 small ones and 2 big ones that were equivalent to… I guess 6 small ones?! That added up to a shocking 10 for a petite-sized like me. Book was in awe and so was myself.

– JD

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Life-tasting at Uchi

French people I’d worked with love afternoon naps and would always urge me to leave the office on time because “you have to have a life”; former colleagues who are Italian would often indulge in a 3-hour lunch with a bottle of invigorating Pinot; and friends visiting from the Maldives simply couldn’t understand why we’re always in a rush.

You might call them lazy, but I would say that they savor and add quality to their lives.

I have heard of Uchi Coffee for countless of times over the past two years but have never given it a try. My initial impression for both it and Uchi Days and Meals was “maybe just another Taiwanese/Japanese-inspired café with tidy, minimalistic design but mediocre and small-portioned food that leans on the pricey side”.

Tbh that wasn’t fair; and I’m glad to have finally given it and myself a chance. I have dined there for several times during its soft-launch period, and these are the things ordered:

 

Chef Special Salmon Set (HK$118) with Hot Ginger Tea:
The fillet is grilled to give sweet and salted flavours, rich salmon oil on the golden crispy skin (omega-3!!!) complements the delicate, moist and flaky flesh.
Steaming hot Ginger Tea is just the drink you need for humid early spring.

Kansai Braised Beef Set (HK$89) with Hot Matcha Latte:
Thinly sliced meat on a bed of “harusame” glass noodles that soaked up the satisfying sweet beef broth, where the chewy texture makes it a joy to eat along with the rice.
Matcha Latte is slightly thin in the consistency, not oversweet and lovely.

 

Salmon Ochazuke (HK$65):
An effortless dish made by pouring hot green tea over rice, topped with salmon, tiny rice crackers, seaweed and a Japanese parsley called “mitsuba”; another dish besides sushi and “hiyayakko” the chilled tofu appetizer that suggests the simplicity of the Japanese culture.

Yam Puree Spring Egg Cold Soba (HK$85):
Refreshing and healthy, but a bland taste is inevitable in this combination of ingredients. Prefer cold soba noodles with simple tsuyu sauce.

 

Homemade Pork Udon Soup (HK$79):
Another highlight of Uchi. The meat is tender and tasty (though I have had better ones elsewhere), udon is chewy and bouncy in the clear soup.

Prawn Tempura Udon Soup (HK$82):
Fresh prawns with just a thin, airy layer of deep-fried crust. Again, nice udon.

 

Earl Grey Waffle (HK$48):
Looks cute, with classic flavour of bergamot found in the ice-cream scoop. But totally unimpressed by the “waffle” that’s actually a crumbly dougnut – not only that it is absent of iconic squared pockets to carry all the chilled goodness, but it also keeps falling apart as we eat…

 

Uchi wins Hongkongers’ hearts by promoting the art of slow living. You can feel the atmosphere once you step inside, as if you can finally unburden yourself, take time to appreciate the food and the person sitting right in front of you (note: 90-minute limit).

P.S. “Uchi” means house in Japanese, particularly referring to a person’s home and has a warmer feeling to it 🙂

Uchi Days and Meals
Shop No.4, G/F, Double Cove Place, 8 Wu Kai Sha Road, Ma On Road, New Territories, Hong Kong
T. +852 2662 0102

– Judith

Lovely, “Oldish” place to chillax

Haven’t updated my blog for some time, but this place named Oldish in Sheung Wan that I went with my girl friends last Friday has given me motivation in typing!

We booked a table ahead and were seated close to the entrance. It’s a warm, cozy place that serves up international dishes, and these are what we ordered:

Starters / Side Orders –

Thai Minced Pork Salad with Herbs & Glass Noodles (HK$128): Love the freshness of the lettuce. The ground pork tasted kind of light, not as savory as traditional ones from Thailand. Of course you may argue that it’s healthier in such a way.

Salt & Pepper Chicken Wings (HK$85): Deep-fried single bone wings were addictive and easy to eat (thanks for being thoughtful because girls wouldn’t have to worry if they look bizarre when chewing to get the meat off!). The fried garlic pleased me as a huge garlic lover.

Roti (HK$45, photo forgotten): Hot, puffed up and light, a perfect match with Thai Curry (see below).

Thai Style Potato Stir Fry (HK$75): Evenly-cut potato cubes cooked with onion and bell pepper, coated with spicy, sweet and sour sauce that stimulated the appetite. Potato cubes were moist in the inside but the lack of crispness on the outside was what I thought needed improvement.

Garlic Stir Fry Broccoli with Anchovy (HK$75): Simple veggie dish made special with bites of meaty anchovies!

Main –

Smoked Salmon Brown Rice Risotto in Cream Sauce (HK$148): I didn’t have problem with its mild, creamy taste but I found it too dry as in having too little cream sauce, let alone the desirable all’onda consistency.

Thai Style Fried Brown Rice with Minced Pork & Sunshine Egg (HK$148): This wasn’t impressive as it was, like the Minced Pork Salad (above), absent of the rather bold and exotic flavors typical in Southeastern food.

Thai Curry with Lemongrass Cornflakes Chicken (HK$168): Well, the same issue… maybe it’s because Oldish does not focus on just one type of cuisine, Thai curry did taste fine but did not taste Thai… and I suggest that they serve a bigger portion of it to do the Roti justice (after all, without its dip it’s nothing). Cornflake-coated chicken were good – crunchy and tasty.

Baby Pork Shanks with Spicy & Sour Sauce (HK$148): Cooked to just right, the meat was so tender that they came off from the bone effortlessly. The other girls skipped the sauce because they found it too intense, but to me it was fine and could add excitement to the meat.

Dessert –

Oldish Ginger Crème Brûlée (HK$70): This was essentially a Crème Brûlée flambé! After a minute or so when the flame had gone out, with our spoon we tapped to crack the caramel crust to reveal the creamy, decadent custard that wasn’t sickly sweet (thank God). Very satisfying, and we loved it.

Oldish Tiramisu (HK$75): Classic Italian recipe with a twist, making it look like a donut or an inflatable pool ring. It was smooth in the inside, with the sweetness balanced when eaten with a spoonful of black coffee.

Along with a bottle of German Riesling (Pieroth Blue 2013), the dinner cost roughly at HK$1,460, about HK$290 per head.

In all, it’s a rather secluded place to chill. They have warm, welcoming staff, not to mention Norman, one of the owners who passionately recommended dishes, brought us Crème Brûlée and two glasses of bubbly for free and took time to know our thoughts on his restaurant (and photo-bombed us).

Show Us Your Tattoo (ig: @oldishhk); Oldish

P.S. Do not miss the “Show Us Your Tattoo” promo!
(check out their Instagram: @oldishhk)

P.P.S. Wooden stools, tables and other furniture and household items are available at Growth Ring & Supply, if you like them 🙂

Oldish Limited
G/F, 53 Tung Street, Sheung Wan, Hong Kong
T. +852 2697 3313

– Judith

{Athens, Greece} Eat-Eat-Eat at Meat-Meat-Meat!

Work has been kind of exhausting lately when the Youth Olympics at Nanjing draws closer. Anyway, I was involved in this project, and was therefore in Greece.

We began the next day by witnessing and live reporting the Flame Lighting Ceremony at the Panathenaic Stadium, and after that touring its museum. It was a beautiful and awe-inspiring experience, and we’d decided to celebrate… by having a decent meal instead of hurried ones from random coffee shops.

Meat-Meat-Meat the Grill was what we found for late lunch! We opted for this because we liked its young, fun and robust atmosphere, as well as its logo, and there we ordered…

Yogurt with Honey & Nuts; Meat-Meat-Meat the Grill, Athens, Greece

Yogurt with Honey & Nuts (EUR$3.5) was a dessert served before everything else, which suggested that it can be a little more thoughtful for its diners. But it didn’t bother us at all because it’s really delicious!

Greek yogurt is special for being thick and tangy. Its sour taste was nicely balanced by the sweetness in the honey, whilst the crunchiness in the walnuts added liveliness and texture. This is literally the best yogurt combination in the world that can get me to “Eat-Eat-Eat” till forever!

Grilled Pita - Kind of Greek Tortilla; Meat-Meat-Meat the Grill, Athens, Greece

Grilled Pita – Kind of Greek Tortilla (EUR$1.5) stimulated the appetite! Tomatoes and Xinomizithra, a local sour cream cheese made of goat’s milk that’s also known as Paros fresh cheese, created a refreshing topping. I think it’s a good idea to lightly season it with black pepper.

mixGRILL 2 person; Meat-Meat-Meat the Grill, Athens, Greece

Finally onto mixGRILL 2 person (EUR$15), it included pork, chicken and kebab skewers (2 each), 1 traditional sausage, beef and turkey burgers (1 each), french fries, 2 sauces and more pitas. It was served hot; with a dash of freshly-squeezed lemon juice and thinly sliced onions, the platter reflected the robust and exotic side of Greek cuisine.

Together with a big bottle of water that costed just another EUR$1, this place definitely offers al fresco dining at a fair quality-price ratio. If you’re at Athens, would you give this a try too?

Meat-Meat-Meat the Grill
Tsakalof 10, KolonakiAthensGreece
T. +30 21 0338 8676

– Judith

Old-school HK style “Cafe Virtue”

View from the opposite street; Mai Tak Cafe

I usually arrive at the office pretty early, so today, I’ve decided to walk around the industrial area for “treasure hunting”. Look what I’ve found — it’s Mai Tak Cafe across the street!
p.s. “Mai Tak” means virtue in Chinese

So I crossed the street and walked to the takeaway counter. But before that, I was attracted by the 80’s Canton pop songs that played through an outdoor speaker (tiny white square near the window) and that’s when I then noticed the front door that led me up the stairs to this old-school Hong Kong-style cafe!! Super cool, don’t you think?

After a quick look I went back to the ground floor, followed the queue and bought myself freshly made Egg Sandwich with Hot Coffee (HK$16). To be honest, I must say my breakfast was yummy but actually quite ordinary, but I would return for my hope that this kind of places won’t get replaced by restaurant groups that lack personality and human warmth. We’re having too many of those already.

+ + + + +

Quick update:

I brought my friend here again this morning and actually sat down for a proper breakfast. We ordered the same thing – English Breakfast with Fish Fillet, Fried Egg and Hash Brown with toast, plus a cup of Milk Tea added with Condensed Milk (HK$24)!

It was a sizable amount of comfort food, and with that sweet, smooth, absolutely luscious drink that rounds up the meal (forget about the calories for a sec), what more can I ask for?

Mai Tak Cafe
M/F, Mai Tak Industrial Building, 221 Wai Yip Street, Kwun Tong, Hong Kong
T. +852 2344 2512

– Judith

Motorino + Origin = Fulfilling

For those who have followed my posts, you’d know that I’ve left the publishing group and moved on at a new working place. It’s been brilliant fun so far, which within one month of employment they’ve already sent me onto a business trip to Greece! *GEEZ*

I’m pretty lucked out and I’m absolutely happy about it, but of course that’s also when I started getting real busy too and have seemed to leave my blog behind…

Before I talk about what I’ve eaten at Athens and the beautiful Santorini, I’d like to give way to this one first. Exactly two months ago it was my friend’s birthday. We’ve known each other for some eight or nine years and only in 2014 it came to my mind that I’ve never made her a cake.

So here it is, a not-so-nice-looking-but-super-delicious-matcha-cheesecake — once again, I love you and I wish you the best, Samantha.

Of course, it’s more than just a cake! Another night I brought her to Motorino, an Italian place located along the stairs of Soho.

It’s been quite a long time and it didn’t leave a deep impression. As I can slightly recall, the two antipasti — Prosciutto di Parma + Buffalo Mozzarella (HK$138) and Octopus and Potato Salad w/ Capers & Chili Oil (HK$ 138) — weren’t bad. My strongest opinion though, is if you might order Cherry Stone Clams Pizza ($208) like we did, please DO NOT overspend time on taking photos because it can smell and taste awfully fishy once it starts cooling down. I learned that if I must order this again, I must either boost my photo-snapping skills or only order it when I have more than two people to share.

I introduced her to Origin later of the night. Some of you might be aware of a coverage on Spirito diVino Asia about gin (if not, click to read! http://goo.gl/TkeQvV); thanks to its awesome (and HOT) barmaid Cherry who you’ll find more often at Quinary instead, I’ve developed affection and appreciation towards the world of mixology.
That night we didn’t meet her there, but felt her presence by ordering her award-winning B24 Gimlet (HK$120) chrysanthemum cocktail with a ginseng taste, and also one of the bar’s signature cocktails named KGB (HK$120), likely to be a short form of “Kyoho grapes – Gin – Bubble Bath”. With both its taste and fabulous presentation, you really don’t want to miss out on this.

Motorino
G/F, 14 Shelley Street, Central, Hong Kong
T. +852 2801 6881

Origin
G/F, 48 Wyndham Street, Central, Hong Kong
T. +852 2668 5583

– Judith

SdVA – Delightful press events…

… that preview up-and-coming events, restaurant menus, fine wine products and more.

Over that 1.5 years with Spirito diVino Asia I’d been invited to numerous press events, and in fact quite a number of them are still coming up even I’m only a small potato in the blogging community right now. Thanks for the support and trust!!!
25 May, 2013@ Domani Ristorante
Press lunch for Made in Italy 2013: Quality & Lifestyle
1. Capesante: pan-fried scallops, butter snow peas, orange dressing
2. Crema di Zucca: pumpkin soup, parmesan ice-cream and amaretto reduction
3. Orata: pan-fried seabream, sauteed spinach and clams
(other options — Lasagna: open-faced lasagna, stracchino cheese, bacon, spring onion and fava beans / Stinco d’agnello: lamb shank, spicy carrots in ginger bread)
4. Zuppa al Cioccolato: cold chocolate soup, milk ice-cream, coffee waffle, vanilla oil

7 October, 2013@ Harbour View Ballroom II, Four Seasons Hotel
Press preview of Castiglion del Bosco‘s Year of Horse limited edition of 888 bottles, collaborated with Chinese artist Tian Shuhan
1. Baked Crab Shell Stuffed with Fresh Crab Meat and Black Truffle (with CdBianco 2012)
2. Double-boiled Sea Whelk with Matsutake Mushrooms and Brassica (with Campo del Drago 2007)
3. Roast Chilean Sea Bass Fillet with Sweet Soy Sauce, Braised Australian Wagyu Beef Cheek in Gravy (with Campo del Drago 1999)
4. Caramelised William Pear with Fromage Blanc Creme, Lemon Verbena Gelato (with San Michele 2008)
5. Petits Fours (with Grappa del Drago)
*AMAZING dishes — the William Pear is one of my most-coveted desserts ever*

8 October, 2013@ Mimura Japanese Restaurant
Press preview of Tokushima specialties — “gifts from the beauty of nature”
1. Deep-fried Awaodori Chicken with Italian balsamic vinegar and Shanghai hairy crab roe
2. Soba-gome with Awaodori Chicken
3. Oden (Japanese hotchpotch with Daikon and chicken ball)
4. Awaodori Chicken wing with aged tangerine peel
5. Torikara with Awaodori
6. Simmered Japanese Eggplant by Dried Awa Shrimp
7. Naruto-Tai Okaki Age
8. Tempura Naruto Kintoki Potato
and A LOT more dishes… let’s not forget the sake Dassai 23, by the way!

– Judith

What about FULL/half?

As it’s only one week away from April I started thinking to myself that time passes really quickly, and that I’ve turned 24 for like three months… and I’ve not written one post for how Ed celebrated my birthday with me!  U_U

On that morning, after watching The Wind Rises he took me to FULL/half that is located right outside of the cinema’s exit for brunch.


Behind this place with an interesting name is an interesting concept: customers who’d like to sit down and take a rest with coffee or homemade desserts are seated at the half area, whereas those who’d prefer set meals like us are seated at the FULL area. It is, therefore, nicely divided into two parts by plant partition to create different atmospheres that suit the different needs. You can find its furniture and decors from Homeless, by the way.

I felt lucky while it was one of the finer afternoons among the winter days, and that the place felt homey and intimate especially when sparsely seated on a weekday. I felt blessed sitting by the window that overlooked a part of the bustle city that seemed much like a quiet neighbourhood in the small towns of Japan.

We ordered two set lunches to share, starting off with a fresh but rather unconventional Caesar Salad and a comforting Homemade Tomato Soup that was savoury to taste.

Organic Fettuccine with Fresh Oyster & Caviar in Champagne Butter Sauce; FULL/half

Moving on, we’re served with Organic Fettuccine with Fresh Oyster & Caviar in Champagne Butter Sauce (HK$113). The sauce and deep-fried oysters were hot and delicious; caviar was small and dark, quite bland and obviously not of high quality (however understood as it’s just a café); appreciated how pasta came with a homemade feeling, but I think they need to work on the unappealing pasta sheets that were full of bubbles and a bit tough.

Grilled Australian Marbling Striploin with Creamy Mashed Potato; FU

Grilled Australian Marbling Striploin with Creamy Mashed Potato (HK$153), our another main dish, was cooked to medium, nice and juicy. I had nothing to complain about the mashed potato, as I recall.

Not to forget our drinks that arrived before the dishes. He picked Caffe Latte (included in the set) topped with frothy microfoam while I had Fresh-made Honey Ginger Lemon Tea (additional HK$4) that warmed my palms and eased the cold, though I’d call for more ginger. And since Christmas was fast-approaching, it thoughtfully sent us a gift that marked a cheery end to our meal – Homemade Chocolate Brownie Cubes that was semi-sweet, fudgy and dense.

P.S. despite the many criticisms of The Wind Rises, I think it being less exciting and closer to reality do not make it any less appreciable than past productions. Lovely, emotional and almost heartbreaking animated movie by Hayao Miyazaki, with once again a great soundtrack by Joe Hisaishi.

FULL/half eat & drink design
8/F, The One, 100 Nathan Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon, Hong Kong
tel. +852 29978190

– Judith

Live conscious, eat healthy

During this 1.5 years of working at a fine wine/dine magazine when I’ve also started this food blog, this period of time is essentially when I’ve been eating most lavishly — in terms of amounts! A thought struck my mind recently, telling me that the only way to keep on eating nice things is by maintaining a healthy body; and rather than just following a stricter workout routine, why not simultaneously look for places that offer healthy food?

So just in time, my pair of twin sister friends gave a suggestion: MANA! Fast Slow Food. It set foot in Central since mid-2012 and it’s a shame that I’d always walked past it without realizing it’s something special.

Mana is an ancient word that carries the meaning of life-giving force, chi, sacred food, and the connection of minds and soul. Calling itself Fast Slow Food suggests that it’s offering quick, easy meals that are instead made with healthy, local and traditionally grown ingredients. Upon entering, you can either sit at the wall-mounted tables or walk your way up to the second floor to the communal table, where there’s no ceiling above your head so you can look at the sky and enjoy the fresh air when you eat. Food matching with ambiance, quite inspiring.

I’ve been there several times these two months and below are a list of food that I’ve tried:

MANA! Joy (Full: HK$75 / Half: HK$45) – I’ve always returned to this because it has my favourite ingredients — avocado, garlicnaise, tomatoes and mint — in a package 🙂 I feel good after each bite that is clean and fresh, and I think it’s my body thanking me for eating well. Like all the other flatbread choices, it is organic oven-baked flatbread topped with Za’atar.

MANA! Prana (Full: HK$85 / Half: HK$50) – with portebello mushrooms, slow-dried tomatoes, cucumber, fresh sprouts and mint. Needless to say, it’s a great option too that is more pungent due to the ingredients used. Prana in Hindi means “life-giving force”, similar to the name Mana itself.

Fries (HK$30) – handcut potatoes tossed in sea salt, a simple, comforting and fingerlickingly delicious snack. Though is a relatively not-so-healthy option, I still always order it as my little “side dish”. And of course, I always pick garlicnaise (Mmmmmmmm) over the ordinary ketchup.

Babylon Shake (HK$55) – this is one of, if not the most frequently-ordered drinks that incorporates bananas, fig, tahini, soy milk and cinnamon. It has a super thick texture that pleases your empty stomach in no time, perfect for those (like myself) who’s often bothered by the urge of snacking even after a normal-sized meal.

The only thing that I dislike about Babylon is the crazy amounts of cinnamon because I really don’t like cinnamon… MANA!‘s staff commented on my post on Instagram though that I should order Inka Shake next time 🙂

Burger (no photo, sorry) (HK$70) – it is haloumi cheese, tofu, roasted veggies, portebello mushrooms, pickled cucumber in a wholewheat bun. Tasting as robust and delectable as normal burgers with meat, but absolutely guilt-free.

In short, this place proves that healthy (vegetarian) food are not necessarily dull and boring. Treat yourself well, notice a difference — physically and spiritually.

MANA! Fast Slow Food
92 Wellington Street, Central, Hong Kong
tel. +852 28511611

– Judith

WTF !? XXD

“WHAT THE F***?!” — This was my colleague’s first and very genuine reaction after looking at my lunchbox today, followed by a chain of laughter.

Well, by being able to catch people’s attention (in the office and on the MTR) and get them to ask questions, WTF!?XXD is at the first step to success by only soft-opening in Central.

I can imagine your furrowed brows now, as I had the exact same look on my face while I first saw the restaurant name. WTF is Wholesome Tasty Food while XXD, rather than being an insane laughing face “XD” (tilt your head to the left), means Xhibiting Xtreme Deliciousness.

In fact, it was last week while someone did a little write-up on Facebook to promote the shop; a friend “Liked” the post, went there, posted a photo along with a short description. The same thing popped up twice on my news feed and I thought to myself, “it’s destiny… let’s give it a go!” So even though It was chilly and drizzling this afternoon, and that I was actually suffering from a cold *sneeze* it didn’t stop me from traveling from Causeway Bay to Central for its soft opening. I’m (the staff are too) surprised by my determination when it comes to food.

Western Bento - Penne with Wild Mushroom Cream Sauce, Rosemary Roasted Potatoes and Salad; WTF!?XXD

They offer croissant, ciabatta, panini, salad, and this Bento: Penne with Wild Mushroom Cream Sauce, Rosemary Roasted Potatoes and Salad (HK$53).

Penne provides a large surface area for the thick, creamy fragrant-infused sauce to cling onto, making the pasta a very appetible and fulfilling one; russet potatoes are nicely seasoned with salt and fresh rosemary(!); while salad is clean and fresh to mark the start of the lunch.


Big thoughts thrive on small space. It’s all about quirky designs and bold colours that cheer you up in a jiffy, and a range of home-cooked food that comes also in muffins, scones and bagel from the West and steamy buns, siu-mai, rice paper rolls and more from the East.

And oh, have I not mentioned that the Bento comes in Chinese style too?

WTF!?XXD
Shop 6, 1 Lyndhurst Terrace, Central, Hong Kong
tel. +852 2346 8889

– Judith