Ho Lee Fook

Ho Lee Fook

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!!

  • Spike
    Posted at 23:35h, 31 July Reply

    For many years there was a famous Chinese restaurant in London’s Chinatown, Lee Ho Fook. And I guess Ho Lee Fook didn’t have that place in mind when they named their place, but every time I see the name I start hearing Warren Zevon.

    I saw a werewolf with a Chinese menu in his hand
    Walking through the streets of Soho in the rain
    He was looking for the place called Lee Ho Fook’s
    Going to get a big dish of beef chow mein
    Werewolves of London

    • sgtnoms
      Posted at 19:50h, 01 August Reply

      I never thought of that before and thanks to you, I will ALWAYS hear Warren Zevon too when I go to Ho Lee Fook. Which is going to have to be soon because I have been dreaming ALL DAY of dat Wagyu of Hong Kong. Awoooooooooooooooooo.

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