Dandan Soul Food from Sichuan (holy fuck it’s actually a useful HK website)
181 Queen’s Road
Grand Millennium Plaza
Sheung Wan, Hong Kong

(Helpful info from the website – MTR Sheung Wan, Exit E2 – fuck no to taking the wrong exit from the Sheung Wan MTR and never arriving at your destination, ever)

Ehhhh, I couldn’t find it easily on their website so if they can’t be bothered, why should I?  It’s not a booking place anyway.

Noodles + a small side dish + tea set = HKD70.  8 pieces of dumplings = HKD55.

The deal:
Dandan Soul Food from Sichuan (DDSFFS) opened about a month and a half ago by a French homie, Jerome Plassat and the chef behind the menu is his Sichuan wife.  No, I don’t know why any of the reviews or articles I read don’t ever mention Mrs Plassat’s actual name, never moving beyond describing the chef as “Jerome Plassat’s wife is from Sichuan“.  Hot trend alert, there’s now two noodle bars in Sheung Wan run by gwai lo and their Asian partners (see also:  Foxtail & Broomcorn).  Can’t blame the gwai lo noodle boys though – you know what they say, once you go Asian, you don’t go Caucasian. FACT.

DDSFFS has positioned itself as a hip, casual authentic Chengdu noodle joint.  There’s something about the name of “Dandan Soul Food from Sichuan” which feels like a working title to me – it just seems so fucking factual.  Hey DDSFFS, Y U no have snappy name to match your bold, comedic logo?  Even when you make an acronym out of their long ass name it just reads like “Dandan Soul FFS”?  What I do know is that I get this song in my head everytime I think of DDSFFS’s name:

Super friendly Jerome was manning the cashier at the front where you order and he will happily take you through the menu.  All of the noodles sounded so fucking rad – I wanted to eat them all and I ruminated over whether to go traditional with the namesake Dan Dan Pulled Noodle or try something different. In true HK style, once I found out that the Sliced Pork & Suan Cai Pulled Noodles and the Tender Beef Stew Pulled Noodles were sold out, every motherfucking fibre in my being desperately wanted those choices, as I made a mental note to come back at 11:30am to make sure I never, ever missed out on anything ever again.

Service here is super speedy with the food arriving really fucking fast, mere minutes after we sat down. Shit looked super fly and our waitress instructed us to eat the dumplings first while they were still hot.  The pork + leek and pork + zucchini dumplings were a fuck yeahhhhh with their fresh as fuck vegetables and juicy ass pork fillings. I fucking love thick skinned dumplings provided that they still have some chew to them and DDSFFS delivers.

But the true star of the masterpiece are their noodles.  I’d settled on the Chengdu Pork dry style pulled noodles and I was giddy as fuck in anticipation, as I mixed my very solid serve of pulled noodles with the spicy pork mince, peanuts and chilli sauce which lay underneath.  DEM CHILLI AND NUMBING SICHUAN PEPPERCORN FEELS.  Shit was so real and the sauce, meat and noodle ratio was bang on, with the rich, fragrant sauce melding perfectly with those fucking magnificent toothsome pulled noodles.  DDSFFS told me that the noodles are pretty much the one thing they don’t make on site, but full points on executing a shit hot job on sourcing a fuck yeah pulled noodle provider.  On the spice level though, DDSFFS has got four spice levels for you to choose from and because I like my spice levels to be on fyahhhhh I went for the spiciest one.  I think their scale could do with at least two more notches.  To be fair, Jerome had already told us when we were ordering that their spiciest level wasn’t going to kill you and sure, there’s jars of their homemade chilli sauce on the table (which is the same as the stuff they cook with) for you to adjust the spice to your taste, but fuuuck, after all the talk about being authentic Sichuan food, I was just expecting shit to match my expectation of Sichuan food ie. it should blow your goddamn lips off, right before you lose all feeling in your outermost extremities.

Overall, DDSFFS gets its price point right, service is friendly and efficient, and most importantly, I’ve been dreaming ’bout dem bitey, toothsome fuck yeah noodles with dat chilli pork sauce ALL fucking week. I’m literally waking up at random intervals through the night, bolting upright and shouting “TOOTHY AS FUCK NOODLES” before falling back into a chilli filled fugue (ok, may be getting fictional on yo ass here).  All I gotta say is that I, for one, am grateful for Jerome’s nameless Sichuan Chef Wife.

FUCK YEAH – I got dem noodle feels.

Ho Lee Fook (R U fucking serious??  A TUMBLR is your official website??) See also their FB Page.
1 Elgin Street (the lower bit, more towards Hollywood Road)
Central, Hong Kong

+852 2810 0860 (it’s one of those bullshit no bookings unless >6 people)

We got out at HKD460 each – between two people we had two mains + one salad and two cocktails.  In retrospect, we might not have needed two meatageddon mains.  I always go on high alert when I’m in trendy, of the moment joints which always seem to subscribe to “food for ants” sizes but no fear here, servings are fucking generous.

The deal:
I know everyone’s losing their shit over Ho Lee Fuk with Chef Jowett’s modern take on old school Hong Kong cha chaan tengs and its cavernous, trendy dark Chinatown retro New York inspired decor but I just can’t get over what a fucking stupid name it is. Ho Lee Fook actually translates to “good fortune for your mouth” but all I can think about is people going “I’ll see you at Ho Lee Fuk” OMG LOOK, IT SOUNDS LIKE HOLY FUCK. JEEEZ WHAT A GODDAMN GAS.  Every blog I read calls it quirky, hilarious and cheeky though – so perhaps I’m just a dour faced bitch who prefers it when people are straight forward with their F-bombs. It just feels like when places give their dishes stupid ass names like ‘The Big Bertha Wonderburger’ or ‘The Big O Chocolate Sinner’ and I always make it a point not to say the stupid fucking name and then some asshat waiter will repeat the full dumb ass name back at you.

We rolled into Ho Lee Fook at 815pm, with no booking because you can’t fucking book a table unless you have more than six people.  Front of house let us know that we’d probably be waiting til around NINE FUCKING THIRTY for a table.  I would normally be concerned that I would eat my arms off by then but I saw Chef Jowett Yu and the Ho Lee Fook homies smashing together Wagyu Short Ribs that I desperately needed in my life. FINE YOU NO BOOKING ASSHOLES, have it your way because I am now beholden to your beef, so we took ourselves up Elgin Street to have mojitos until they called us.  At 930pm we still hadn’t been called, but we stomped back in to demand satisfaction in no uncertain terms as they apologetically told us that a table was finishing their dessert and should be fucking off fairly shortly (ok, they didn’t drop the F bomb).  I was about to have a no booking hunger induced meltdown but Ho Lee Fook offered as a free cocktail while we waited.  Fuck yeah to alcoholic free shit to soothe my harried no booking soul.  I got their Mule cocktail (ginger beer and booze based) and despite every Asian sensation in my body being heightened by it being free, I can confirm I ordered another one later (which I paid for) and it was still a fuck yeah.

Ho Lee Fook’s menu is green with black writing on it and their restaurant is not a brightly lit fucker, so if you’re colourblind or old, sorry to say – sucks to be you, you better get your more able homies to read out shit to you.  Given that we’d ordered two main serves of their beef wagyu short rib with green shallot kimchi and their pork char siu, they recommended we get our veg on with the heirloom tomato salad with duck egg, cucumber and Chinese olive leaf.  UH OH, use of heirloom – tick another one off the hipster checklist.  But it was delicious as fuck and a good light primer before MEATAGEDDON.  The beef wagyu short rib comes cut off the bone (ready for white folk and dainty eaters), glazed in soy sauce and spicy jalapeño puree on the side.  It was fucking unreal – Ho Lee Fook showed the love to that motherfuckin’ beef rib ensuring that blogs across HK are declaring “melt in your mouth!” and “absolutely cooked to perfection!”. But ain’t nobody got time for those overwrought cliches, so fuck dem xoxo and extraneous exclamation marks off and know that this was the good shit with a special fuck yeah mention for the jalapeño puree.

We also ordered the pork char siu because we’d been told there was only one left and FOMOOGP (Fear of Missing Out on Goddamn Pork) meant we had no other option but to get fucking involved.  There was no real twist on this from a flavour perspective, pretty much being a classic charsiu but it was clearly using some fancy as fuck, high class pork.  Due to the menu being unreadable due to its colour choices, I can’t tell you exactly what this pig got up to prior to its death, but I assume that it was probably some Australian porcine princess which got its grassy nom on under the open skies, with a gentle breeze caressing her delicious belly.

For dessert, we shared a Granny Smith apple granita, with Calpis sorbet, mochi and red koji jelly which they comped given the no booking / waiting palaver.  It was an amped up, modern version of an Ice/Ais Kacang (Singaporean / Malaysian ice based dessert which mixes a number of textures / ingredients).  Given my full as fuck status from annihilating the preceding meatageddon, this tart appley bitch with its contrasting sweet and chewy textural components was a motherfucking, refreshing as fuck treat.

Special shout out to their A1 grade friendly homie, Olivia, who not only gave us free cocktails and a dessert because of the wait, she also made sure we knew which items were about to sell out so we could get our orders in and kept the service efficient as fuck.  FUCK YEAH to super fucking adorable service homies who have got their goddamn shit going on.

NO, I am NOT going to lazily close out my review using their name to make a “holy fuck” pun.  Fuck vindicating that shit, but FUCK YEAH!!

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