I have included a few pictures of the helena may where i am staying it has been designated as a heritage building and does not look much from the outside but the inside is quite grand with the old hong kong flavour - very proper you know!
After wandering around hong kong island in the morning I joined the food tour I had registered for.
First stop was a place that serves wonton soup (probably the best I have ever tasted). This place is a third generation family business that started by selling soup out of a cart on the street. There is not much in the way of street food left in hong kong as food safe has arrived here. One of the pictures is of one of the few outdoor food markets left on hong kong island, most have gone to indoor establishments.
Next stop was another small family restaurant that specializes in BBQ pork yummy was it good. Reminds me that I should really go to china town in Victoria and purchase some for a dinner party - does anyone want to come to dinner?
Besides the great food one of the best parts of taking a food tour such as this is to walk the back streets and see some of old hong kong which is such a contrast to the more modern areas of the city.
Another family business we visited was one that crushes sugar cane and sells the juice. Very sweet but is suppose to be good for you.
We passed the YMCA which is one of the oldest buildings in hong kong and the pool still operates - the facility is now used as a rehabilitation centre for the mentally challenged.
As you can see in the pictures there are many stairs and the ones with the lanterns is where the scene from The World of Suzie Wong with William Holden was filmed in the 1950's. Yes my classic movie friends Ronanne and Lesley we watched this film and I was so excited to see this location. The tour guide said I was the first person who actually knew the movie (think that is a nice way of saying I am old).
We passed by another restaurant that specializes in hong kong French toast. Consists of bread with peanut butter dipped in egg and deep fried served with butter and maple syrup. We did not try this delicacy but I think I will have to make it for Hannah.
We then went to a tea house to learn about Chinese tea. The man who owns this shop was a former engineer who had a passion for tea so he gave up his day job and went to school in china to get certified as a tea connissuir and is the only one in hong kong. Here is what I learned about tea:
There are six kinds of tea starting with the least fermented green tea used to cool the body (even served hot) and is full of vitamins. Then white tea really good for the skin and contains lots of anti- oxidants. Yellow tea is similar to green tea but processed differently. Oolong tea which puts enzymes in the stomach and is good for digestion - this tea is often served with dim sum to help digest the richness. Red or breakfast tea is full of caffeine and this is served in the morning to wake up the brain! Lastly there is black tea which helps balance high blood pressure and cholesterol but it also has caffeine. The Chinese believe that tea is very important to keep the body in balance. As important as it is to keep fine wine at a certain temperature, it is just as important the water temperature for each kind of tea. I bought three boxes of tea - to be served at my dinner party!
Next we went to yet another family business that specializes in dim sum from 10 am to 10 pm daily. Unlike most restaurants where they come around with carts, you order the items and they are made fresh. Although everything we tried I have had before it really is much better when it is made fresh. Last stop was a bakery where they specializes in egg tarts. I have always wanted to try these but was not sure I would like them. The secret is they must be fresh and hot yummy - puff pastry with a custard type filling - hopefully they took out the calories. I did not feel too bad eating any of this as this was a 4 hour walking tour. Marianne I have all the addresses of these place for our trip to hong kong! Gaille save your pennies and come with us! Everyone else go order some Chinese food now but I am sure it will not be as good as the food tour.
True to form I met two young girls on the food tour. One was from San Francisco and I asked her whereabouts she said I probably would not know the place - San Mateo. Well that of course is where Sean and Michelle live - her name is also Michelle and she lives about a mile from Hillsdale Mall. The girls and I decided to take the Peak Tram up the mountain to get a view of hong kong by night (if it was clear up there). You can see from the pictures we had the most spectacular view as it was a lovely clear night - absolutely unbelievable! We watched a bit of the nightly laser show but the view and music is much better appreciated from the Kowloon walkway.
We then went to the nightlife districts of Lang Kwai Fong and SOHO for a few drinks and people watching. Got home at midnight and today I am off to Bangkok! The girls leave for Bangkok tomorrow and are hoping to meet up with me. I am already trying to work out having a stop in hong kong before I go to San Fran the end of June. Just so happens Cathay pacific flies direct from here to San Fran. I will definitely come back - I love hong kong - it is a must see!