Pang’s Kitchen

Pang’s Kitchen

Where:
Pang’s Kitchen
25 Yik Yam St
Happy Valley, Hong Kong

Phone:
+852 2838 5462

Price:
HKD270 each, including corkage (HKD100 per…it wasn’t by bottle or person, but they charged us x5 corkage.  We had more than 5 people and bottles, so don’t ask me how this was calculated)

The deal:
I’ve ranted about this before that it seems pretty arbitrary and easy to get a Michelin Star in HK. I really fucking wonder what the fuck goes on with the HK Michelin star system.  Whether a bunch of TOP SECRET JUDGES get together for a drink and after slamming back a stack of B-52s and Cowboys, they say to each other:

Do you know what would be really edgy and controversial?  If we found some cheap, local restaurants in HK in random locations and declared them as ONE STAR RESTAURANTS.  Let’s totally give that pineapple char siu bao place in Sham Shui Po one star and then the NY Times and every wannabe food writer with a shitty blog can write copy about the CHEAPEST MICHELIN STAR RESTAURANT IN THE WORLD.  Think about how fucking cool that’s gonna be when Anthony Bourdain is sitting in some dive restaurant filming that fucking segment for No Reservations!

Fuck, while we’re here what about a random restaurant in Happy Valley?  Then when we get done with that shit, we can go down the road to that fancy as fuck French restaurant and take a star off them because they brought out a mother of pearl fork to eat my GODDAMN POTATO COURSE.  I mean, it’s gonna be a fucking gas!!!

Then Dynamite by Taio Cruz comes on, the lights flash and the judges shout at each other “I FUCKING LOVE THIS SONGGGG” and sing at each other, complete with actions “I throw my hands up in the air sometimes, saying ONE STAR, Hong Kong let’s gooooooo”, before grinding the shit out of the nearest judge and calling it a night.

In a FYN first, on a serious note – read Anthony Fletcher’s piece on Michelin Stars in HK for less swearing, less butchered Taio Cruz lyrics and more cogent thoughts around Michelin Stars in HK.

Pang’s Kitchen is a pretty local, utilitarian, small, 20 seat restaurant in Happy Valley, pumping out Cantonese fare.  They also happen to have one Michelin star, so if you google anything about Pang’s Kitchen it’s all these people going “Yes! This little local restaurant is the proud owner of ONE MICHELIN STAR”.  Enough about fucking Michelin Stars, because putting the star to one side – Pang’s Kitchen was great but is it really a stand-out against all the other good Cantonese restaurants in HK?  It’s getting doubtful.

I tell you what I have no doubt about though – dat crispy garlic chicken.  We ordered two.  I am forever grateful for having friends that have no hesitation on doubling down on FUCK YEAH dishes (or alternatively, having friends who don’t stop me from doubling down on FUCK YEAH dishes).  I’m not normally down with meat/fruit but the pineapple pork ribs were a fuck yeah and not the minging, fruity savoury disaster fruit+meat normally is.  I’ll give a fuck no to their fried squid though – but that was the only bum note in what we ordered.  Good thing I wasn’t a TOP SECRET MICHELIN JUDGE, might have had to take away a star for that underwhelming, poorly battered piece of kraken.  Carbtown was good too – fried rice, fried noodles, all the normal Cantonese carb kings.

I note that I didn’t get to eat the salted egg prawns because the waiter took a look at our gwai lo table and told me that it has shells and it wasn’t going to work.  I tried telling him I don’t care about the shells but he was resolutely of the opinion that white folk needed shelled prawns with cashews.  Maybe this is where Pang’s earns their star – preventing a gwai lo shelling disaster, ensuring that no prawns are left on the table because they’re just too fucking hard to peel is the equivalent of having a killer French head waiter who spots an errant napkin on the floor from across the room, swooping it away before the diners realise.  I don’t know, but I do know that I drowned my salty egg prawnless existence with three crispy garlic chicken wings that the white folk determined too difficult to eat.  WINGS AND ROUNDABOUTS MOTHERFUCKERS.

Verdict:
Fuck yeah – but don’t buy into that bullshit HK Michelin One Star joke.  Just go back cause you wanna annihilate a crispy garlic chicken.  Or two.

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Fuck yeah or fuck no?

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