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Hong Kong budget eats

New restaurant in Hong Kong: Local Ginger Veggie Bistro – affordable Chinese vegetarian, but flavours are a little bland

Blue House in Wan Chai is now home to a quaint Chinese vegetarian restaurant, serving up reasonably-priced weekday lunch sets. The dishes, however, are a little small and are not overly flavourful

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 24 July, 2018, 6:45pm
UPDATED : Tuesday, 24 July, 2018, 6:45pm

New Chinese vegetarian restaurant Local Ginger Veggie Bistro in Wan Chai features locally grown ingredients, and will appeal to those looking for a casual, reasonably-priced weekday lunch; although the dishes might not satisfy larger appetites and can be on the bland side.

The restaurant offers five or six set lunch options each day, and according to staff, the menu is updated every week. Most of the vegetables are sourced from farms in the New Territories.

Located at the revamped heritage complex Blue House, named after the colour of the main building, the shop is hidden from the bustling main street but still easily accessible from the Wan Chai MTR station.

The shop has an indie vibe, and according to its brochure, hosts “mindfulness workshops”, cooking classes and seminars from time to time.

The outdoor seating area is nice and spacious with several wooden tables and big umbrellas, but we opted to sit inside as the summer heat was getting out of hand.

The interior decoration was simple and the space was rather limited, but the handful of diners all seemed to be in a good mood enjoying their meals and chatting with friends.

First up was a bowl of Hong Kong-style egg noodles with mushrooms (HK$58), which comes with a side dish of stir-fried lettuce and a cup of monk fruit tea. Topped with plenty of sliced ginger and spring onions, the noodles were chewy and refreshing and the mushrooms were tender. But the dish was a little bland and not that substantial, with just four pieces of mushrooms on top of the noodles. The lettuce was fresh but unexceptional, while the herbal drink made from the monk fruit was a little too sweet.

We also ordered some wontons (HK$38), which were stuffed with all kinds of crunchy vegetables. While the bouncy texture was not far off from the original shrimp wonton, the flavour was very light. A bowl of egg noodles with veggie wontons (HK$48 including side dish and drink) was equally bland, with almost no toppings and just a few dumplings buried under the noodles.

We added a cup of daily soup (HK$10) to complete the meal. Surprisingly, the pumpkin soup was deliciously smooth and creamy.

Local Ginger is a cheap and pleasant shop, perfect for a quick lunch. The staff were very welcoming and warm, and the ambience was cosy. I would probably return at some point, but I’ll look through the menu and try to spot the dishes with bolder flavours.

Local Ginger Veggie Bistro, 8 King Sing Street, Wan Chai, tel: 2833 4601. Open: Monday to Saturday 11.30am-5.30pm.

While you’re in the area:

Ni hao: Mandarin greeting for diners at new Wan Chai restaurant

Santé Wine Bar in Wan Chai review: French-Spanish delights

Boucher Francais in Wan Chai review: top-quality dry-aged beef