This is where Chinesebites comes in. Interestingly enough after a couple weeks of passing it, I was invited by Chinesebites to come try it out. Food Fate? I’d like to think so.
Hakka cuisine hails from southeastern China with staples being the salt baked chicken and more turf meats than other areas in China (thanks Wikipedia)!
We started off with Honey Braised Pork Cheeks. Honestly, I think that pork cheeks are pretty overlooked when it comes to meat. It’s quite lean but stays pretty moist. As was the case here at Hakkasan, nicely braised with the perfect compliment of sweetness from the honey.
Next up is their Chef’s Signature Whole Coconut with pork and snow fungus soup. The wow factor is definitely being served in a coconut.
While the soup inside (a chicken consommé with tender beef and fungus) is a pretty staple dish at Chinese restaurants, what elevates this dish is the coconut meat inside. It gives the soup a slightly sweet taste and scraping the meat inside also gives it more texture. The taste of the coconut is subtle and delicious.
The next dish to arrive at our table is the Steamed Specialty Odorless Garlic Lobster served with jasmine rice. The aroma of the garlic was droolworthy, yet the garlic didn’t leave any aftertaste in my mouth. The lobster itself is cooked quite nicely, not too overcooked. I think my table was in agreement that there was a lot of rice under the lobster. We also thought it might’ve been interesting to fry the rice rather than have it freshly steamed with oil.
The Ancient Style Salt Baked Chicken is up next, a staple in Hakka cuisine. The dish is baked in a claypot with a lot of hot salt!
The result is a tender chicken (and, if you were wondering, not super salty!).
Braised Pork Hock is up next. When Sherman took a knife to it, it basically fell off the bone, it was so tender. Hock has become quite famous in the recent years, but we’ve been enjoying it in Chinese and Filipino culture for a while now! That’s why I think I enjoy it best at an Asian restaurant, as we’ve got the technique down pat. Hakkasan was no exception.
The Pork Hock is served with bao (steam bun), but I admittedly ended up eating the hock as is.
At this point, a lot of other dishes came to our table in quick succession. Mui Choy Stirfry seasonal greens – still nice and crispy and a great bit of flavour from the sauce on top.
Hakka Homestyle Steam Egg, Pork with Duck Yolk was next. Another Hakka staple. I loved this dish because it was soft and tofu-like on top with substance (the ground pork) on the bottom.
Stirfry fish with pickled cabbage came out next – the fish is breaded but still very tender. The sauce glazed over the fish and vegetables made for a nice addition and balance to our turf-y dinner so far.
Finally, our dessert was Steamed Milk Egg White Custard. Not too sweet, it definitely is a little bit more eggy than custard-y. A nice way to end the meal.
I’d definitely recommend checking out Hakkasan Bistro – it’s a little on the pricier side, so perhaps for a nice special meal, it is worth the trek out to the industrial area of Richmond for Hakka cuisine!
Disclosure: Please note that I was invited by ChineseBites and my meal was comped. However, all opinions are my own.
For more information and their menu, check out Hakkasan Bistro’s Website.