Loletta Lai, diamond marketing executive, picks her dining gems in Hong Kong
Lai loves contemporary and classic Cantonese food, especially roast suckling pig. She also enjoys Ukrainian and singalong Spanish cuisine, the occasional French meal and, for a guilty pleasure, Wah Fung’s chicken livers
For work, I entertain a lot and I don’t like to cook so I eat out a lot. I am not that adventurous, as I don’t want to waste time on bad dining experiences. I tend to go to the same restaurants for particular items I love. Occasionally I try out new places if I hear good comments from friends. I am not that healthy; I enjoy fatty and starchy food.
My schedule is quite packed so I tend to eat in the neighbourhood of my office and home. For breakfast at weekends, I like Congteakafe (24 Square Street, Sheung Wan, tel: 5719 8131), a Cantonese-style cafe with a modern twist. My favourite item is the pineapple bun burger with beef or fish fillet paired with hot yin yang tea. The cafe is opened up for alfresco dining during cooler months. Dogs are also welcome.
Dacha (38-40 Hollywood Road, Central, tel: 2420 3555) is located right next to my office and serves Ukrainian cuisine. It is run by two sisters, Olena and Olsena. I pop in for lunch, coffee and dinner. My favourite dishes are the house-made noodles with chicken meat dumplings, and honey cake. Great coffee, too.
The following three restaurants satisfy my cravings for suckling pig. Shoku (Shop 109, Beachfront, The Pulse, 26-30 Beach Road, Repulse Bay, tel: 2808 2333) serves fusion Japanese and I enjoy the casual dining atmosphere by the beach. It’s a nice weekend outing for a city girl like me.
Xin Dau Ji (various locations including 2/F, Holiday Inn Express, 33 SharpStreet East, Causeway Bay, tel: 3162 8899) arguably has the best suckling pig.
Olé (1/F Shun Ho Tower, 24-30 Ice House Street, Central, tel: 2523 8624) is my favourite Spanish restaurant. The owner, Carmelo Lopez, sometimes even sings with the restaurant’s guitarists.
For overseas visitors, I suggest Cucina (6/F Marco Polo Hotel, Harbour City, 3-27 Canton Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, tel: 2113 0808). The view overlooking Victoria Harbour is amazing. The must-have item is the signature red prawn linguine. The red prawns are flown in from Sicily.
Alternatively, I like Mott 32 (B/F, Standard Chartered Bank Building, 4-4A Des Voeux Road Central, tel: 2885 8688) for dim sum, Peking duck, and barbecue Iberico pork.
For special occasions, Maison Es (1A Star Street, Wan Chai, tel: 2521 8011) is the brainchild of Esther Sham, the founder of private kitchen Ta Pantry. I enjoy the contemporary French cuisine as well as the vintage homey ambience.
My guilty pleasure is the high-cholesterol roast chicken livers at Wah Fung (112-114 Wellington Street, Central, tel: 2544 3466). They are always sold out by midday.