I’ve banged on before about how odd it is that many people feel that travelling from HK island to dine in TST can feel like navigating The Bering Straight on a lilo. It’s really not far and definitely not hard, especially when the restaurant in choice has its own MTR exit all of four minutes from Central.
Imperial Treasure come to Hong Kong from their base in Singapore with serious props, not least in more than 25 restaurants, one of which in Shanghai nabbed two Michelin stars on opening. Regardless of one’s take on the tyre merchants in this part of the world, they must be doing something very right and a dinner overlooking the harbour proved the point. Up in the One Peking building, home to Aqua and more, it occupies a lower floor but still shows off the city.
It’s not exactly culinary rocket science, but their approach is simple. Use really good quality produce, don’t mess around with it and serve it at price points which are in some cases incredibly good value.
Chicken feet are such an acquired taste and texture for palates that didn’t grow up eating them, but here they were a revelation and reminded why it pays to get properly acquainted with them.
Double boiled chicken with sea whelk soup is a dish I’ve had before where texturally and taste wise it was murky, but Imperial Treasure show exactly what I’ve been missing out on. Really delicate flavours in a clear broth make you feel good consuming it, with occasional chicken and whelk surfacing for bite.
A cracking dish of baked crab meat and onions in a crab shell bought lots of proper white crab meat under a golden brown crust of proper gruyere that kept on giving. By far the best example I’ve had in Hong Kong.
Sauteed diced beef with crispy garlic was more good eating thanks to USDA meat:
But the dish to trump them all was their version of roasted boneless suckling pig with glutinous rice. This is on the menu for $600 and has to be pre-ordered, but you’d be hard pressed to spend $600 better in any restaurant. Firstly it was theatrically and unusually presented in a series of rolls arranged with military precision. The exterior bought crispy skin encasing heady, perfumed rice studded with the slow roast shards of baby pork. It was an exceptional dish and one I’ll order without fail – as long as I have half a dozen similarly sized friends to do it justice.
There was also crispy rice in seafood soup and excellent steamed trout with ham and mushroom, but none could hold a candle to the porky masterpiece.
So next time you want a splurge, banquet style, or show off the harbour at very fair prices to guests from out of town, then it’s well worth braving the four minute journey from Central to get there.