One of the most memorable meals I've eaten in Hong Kong this time round has to be at The Chairman in Central.
The Chairman really is Cantonese food at it's finest. Cantonese specific restaurants in Hong Kong are not that easy to find as they usually incorporate other Chinese regions such as Peking or Hunan to name a few, and what makes The Chairman stand out from the rest is the beautifully delicate yet deeply intense flavours. The ingredients and seasoning work so well with each other, and layers of flavour are gently revealed with each bite. Another bonus is that no MSG is used so you can really taste the ingredients used.
I've eaten at fine dining Chinese restaurants before where flavours are too delicate and it loses its original and traditional charm. The Chairman does so well to retain the characteristics of the dishes and even brings a new dimension with clever use of western ingredients.
If you are going to Hong Kong for a holiday or already live in Hong Kong, The Chairman is a must visit. I can bet that you will appreciate just how good Cantonese cuisine can get, it's just knowing where to find it!
There was also a crunch from the finely chopped water chestnuts, providing the perfect contrast against the meat texture. It was so perfect on it's own that I was reluctant to use the Italian balsamic vinegar dip that accompanied it. Surely balsamic vinegar it too strong against this delicate dish? Oh boy was I wrong and I am so glad I tried it!
It had been watered down slightly and resembled the Chinese black vinegar, but the difference is balsamic tastes fruitier and was a match made in heaven with pork.
This Cantonese dish really was given justice and the slight fusion was finely executed.
The rib meat is so juicy, meaty and cooked just right. It was tender to eat yet retained a nice bite. Unfortunately, I didn't think the preserved plum worked because the after taste was just like what you get with artificial sweeteners; a flat, empty sugary taste.
I'm more than sure that the preserved plums were made using sweeteners, but if the chef switches back to normal preserved plums that is preserved with real sugar, this would sort the problem out.
The waiting staff were mainly middle aged men who really knew the menu. Our server was very pleasant and able to explain most of the dishes we had enquired about in great depth, and it's always an experience in itself when the staff know a good deal about the food.
Our dinner was full of finesse and for 4 people, the bill came to around $2200 (the fish was the expensive one at $600) which is pretty good value for money considering the taste and quality. If you are looking to taste some true Cantonese cuisine at it's finest, The Chairman is a must.
G/F, 18 Kau U Fong
Read about my other Hong Kong eats and recommendations.