CLOSED - Restaurant review: Chaoshan Village Food, Mong Kok - Chiu Chow
Small menu features inexpensive, lesser-known Chiu Chow dishes
Chaoshan Village Food, Skyline Tower, 18 Tong Mi Road, Mong Kok, tel: 9578 5454. Open: 6pm-3am
Cuisine: Chiu Chow
Price: about HK$120 without drinks or the service charge
Ambience: there are a few tables inside, but, like other customers, we sat outside on backless stools at fold-out tables. It's a friendly place.
Recommended dishes: hand-beaten minced beef balls in a light broth with Chinese celery (HK$28) had good, beefy flavour and a pleasingly bouncy texture. The "vegetable tea" (HK$30 for small) was a bowl of porky broth dense with minced pork, Chinese sausage, rice vermicelli, peanuts and puffed rice. Rice dumplings (HK$20 for eight pieces) were similar to Chiu Chow fun guo (steamed dumplings filled with dried shrimp, peanuts and pork). These had a meatier, juicy filling, but were slightly overcooked so the wrapper was too soft. Braised duck in soy sauce and spices (HK$68) wasn't like the neatly sliced lo sui (master sauce) goose in other Chiu Chow places. It was heartier, fattier and more strongly flavoured, but good in its own way. Of the three raw seafood dishes we tried, we liked the crab (HK$108 for medium-sized), which had sweet meat, and the small oysters (HK$28).
Pros: they don't serve the standard dishes found at Chiu Chow places. It's a small menu of well-priced dishes and it would be easy to eat here for less than HK$100.
Cons: the raw shrimp (HK$48) were too salty. Assorted beef offal in casserole (HK$88) needed larger pieces of meat; we couldn't tell the different innards apart.
What else? There wasn't any covering for the outdoor area so it's probably not the best place to visit when it rains.