Address: Podium 4, Four Seasons Hotel Hong Kong, 8 Finance Street, Central 中環金融街8號香港四季酒店4樓
Telephone: 3196 8880
When people ask me for recommendations for Chinese food in Hong Kong, I almost feel a bit unoriginal in recommending Lung King Heen in Four Seasons Hotel, which is the first Michelin three-starred Chinese restaurant in the world. True, there are numerous fine Chinese restaurants in Hong Kong, and in fact, many of them offer very good value too, but if you ask for my honest opinion I would not want you to miss out on Lung King Heen as the food is impeccable and the whole experience is just so seamless and enjoyable.
A modern, spacious interior and a large window overlooking the Hong Kong harbour makes a great setting for an enchanting meal. Helmed by Executive Chef Chan Yan Tak, the first Chinese chef to receive three Michelin stars, the dishes on Lung King Heen’s intricately designed menu give traditional Chinese dishes a nudge forward. The food is exciting without being overly fancy, the ingredients are pristine and the execution is meticulous – the restaurant is bound to satisfy even the most demanding palates.
It is worth noting that dim sums at Lung King Heen are ordered by the piece, so how much a typical meal costs really depends on how hungry you are! For me, lunch typically costs around $400 – $600 per head.
(1) We started off with the Steamed lobster and Scallop Dumpling ($40 per piece). Seemingly ordinary, this dim sum was spectacular as every part of it was so delicate and delicious. The steamed lobster and scallop, encased in a gelatinous, suitably thick wrapper, were tender and supple.
(2) The Baked Whole Abalone Puff with Diced Chicken ($50 per piece) followed, and I found it incredibly moreish! The puff was buttery, warm and light, and the small abalone on top was packed with flavours and had an attractively chewy texture. The dim sum was then glazed in a sweet, light sauce.
(3) Lung King Heen is rather famous for their Steamed Shanghainese Pork Dumplings with Scallops ($58 per piece) – not for the actual dumpling itself, but for the adorable little rack which the pork dumpling is held in. The wrapper was thin and smooth (note for for my non-Chinese friends: wrappers for Shanghainese pork dumplings are meant to be thin, whereas wrappers for other types of dumplings, such as Cantonese shrimp dumplings, can be thicker), and the pork and scallops inside the dumplings were smooth and flavourful. The inventive spark of this dumpling was in the addition of scallops – scallops will not be found in traditional Shanghainese dumplings.
(4) A beautiful prawn sat on top of the Steamed Shrimp Dumpling with Asparagus ($58 per piece) and looked immensely inviting. The shrimp and the other ingredients in this dim sum were fresh and tasty, and it was a light, simple dim sum for lunch.
(5) I enjoyed the crunch of this Crispy Spring Rolls with Shrimps and Garlic ($58 per piece). The outer layer was fried to a beautiful golden brown colour, without being too brown, and it formed a nice contrast with the delicate, juicy shrimps in the middle.
(6) The highlight of this meal for me was the Baked Barbecued Pork Buns with Pine Nuts ($58 per piece). I adore Chinese buns, so this pork bun was perfect for me! There was a thick, gorgeous layer of butter crust on top of the soft and pillowy bun. The pork fillings, marinated in a sweet sauce, were fresh and firm, and the pine nuts added extra texture to it.
(7) Moving on to the mains, we had a Crispy Marinated Pork Loin in Fermented Bean Curd Crust with Pancakes ($240).
Even though the pancakes looked a bit wrinkly, they tasted marvellous and were smooth and soft. It is worth noting that the restaurant wrapped the plate with cling film so that the pancakes would not stick to it when you tried lifting them – how thoughtful!
The fermented bean curd crust was airy and crispy, and I really liked the tangy flavour of it. The pork was melt-in-your-mouth soft, and what impressed me was that it was still very hot when it was served!
(8) Even though I had already eaten a fair amount by this time, when I tried the Lung King Heen Lobster Fried Rice with Seafood ($300), I felt the need to finish the whole bowl of it. The rice had a lovely, soft texture without being sticky, and the generous addition of egg gave a lot of fragrance to the dish. The lobsters were magnificently springy and fresh, and a small amount of vegetables added a fantastic crunch.
(9) We finally moved on to the desserts, and the Baked Red Bean Paste Puffs ($54 per piece) captured my heart. The puff was scrumptious and buttery and tasted just like a cookie, while the baked red bean paste inside was tasty and sweet (but not overly sweet).
(10) The Glutinous Rice Dumplings with Pumpkin Seed and Kumquat Paste ($54 per piece) was our second dessert. The glutinous rice wrapping was sticky and satisfyingly thick, and the pumpkin seed and kumquat paste was refreshingly citrus and fruity.
We were also given some petit-fours after our meal – sesame puffs and coconut pudding. I took a bite and they were good, but I was too full to finish them.
Conclusion: With splendid food, warm, vivacious staff and a magnificent sea view, Lung King Heen is simply a notch above other Chinese restaurants in Hong Kong. Be sure too book ahead (I am talking about a month or two in advance), but I can assure you that it is worth the wait!