Sunday, October 24, 2010


Our first visit after O'Malley's renovation work. To our disappointment the place is no longer kids friendly: the playground is gone, the garden is gone, and even the kids' menu is gone. It was still nice to sit out in the sun and we decided to stay. Big mistake.

The seemingly impressive steak and kidney pie. The pastry was the only thing which was nice. The pie itself was pathetic with few pieces of stringy meat and frozen veg.
Without a kids menu we got a spaghetti Bolognese for the kids to share. While it didn't taste bad it was pretty dry.
The banger and mash was a total flop too. We had to send them back once as the mash was stone-cold. Don't think we will be going back in a hurry yet.
42 Taojiang Rd. (nr Wulumuqi Rd.), Shanghai. Tel: 6474-4533

Coffee Tree

It was quite pleasant to be sitting outside on a sunny day, except for the renovation noises next door. Nonetheless the place was packed out and we were glad we got there early.

My chicken taquitos (RMB35), served open. A little awkward to eat but it was delicious with fresh chunky chicken pieces.
Tuscan sun-dried tomato and chicken panini (RMB48). The taste was OK but it was a little small.
Polette (RMB38). Tasty meatballs and sauce, a little add with rice on the side. I could also do with more than 2 meatballs. Mind you when you look at the price tag you can't really complain.
Coffee Tree
Ferguson Lane, Wukang Rd. (nr Hunan Rd.), Shanghai. Tel: 6466-0361

Mr. Willis

Our very first visit to the always busy Mr. Willis.
The extremely tasty scallop and lentils starter my husband ordered (RMB68). Scallops were big and juicy, and grilled to perfection. The accompanying lentils sauce had a faint curry flavour and it went very nicely with the dish.
Beef tartare (RMB82). Tasty but I prefer it more zingy with lots of capers, onions, and of course Worcester sauce.
Grilled veal chop (RMB155). My husband said it was one of the bests.
My rack of lamb (RMB148) was tasty but pretty fatty. By the time I trimmed everything off there wasn't much left.
My husband's pavlova (RMB52). He managed to polish it pretty quickly.
My sticky date pudding (RMB58). Sticky date is not as good as sticky toffee but it did the job to finish our wonderful meal.
A pretty damn good meal and a very wallet-friendly bill. No wonder this place is booming!

Mr. Willis
3/F, 195 Anfu Rd. (nr. Wulumuqi Rd.), Shanghai. Tel: 5404-0200

Tang Palace

Another try at Tang Palace after our last visit a while ago. Still we were not impressed at all. Don't think we will be back.
Tang Palace
103 DongZhu An Bang Rd.(nr. Jiangsu Rd.), Shanghai. Tel: 6251-3960


Yet another delicious meal at Issimo. We can't help but to go back repeatedly!

Home-made orecchiette with fresh tuna, capers, black olives and anchovies (RMB128). I wish I can make pasta like this at home. The anchovy sauce was a great compliment to the firm pasta. Loved it.
Cream of mushroom soup with truffle favour (RMB78). Very rich and creamy, it was the one of the nicest mushroom soup we tried.
Gnocchi with traditional Bolognese sauce (RMB108). Tasty chunky meat sauce. Couldn't ask for more.
Spaghetti tossed with fresh clams, cherry tomatoes and rocket (RMB118). Nice flavours and not too garlicky.
Thinly sliced grilled Australian veal sirlion with seasonal mushrooms ragu and rosemary potatoes (RMB228). My husband was pretty happy with it.
Grilled Italian pork sausages and New Zealand lamb chops with apple and onion compote (RMB198). My dish was probably the only boring one that night. Everything was just grilled and while the lamb was tender and juicy the sausage was very average. And the onion and apple compote did not leave an impression.
Hot chocolate amaretto, coffee meringue and coconut ice cream (RMB65). Loved everything especially the coffee meringue.
Cheese platter with truffle honey and walnuts (RMB158).
2/F, Jia Shanghai, 931 Nanjing Rd. West, nr. Taixing Rd., Shanghai. Tel: 3302-4997

Sushi U

Finding a lunch spot in Central can be tricky these days. The two places we had in mind had huge lineups on this particular day and we had to go with plan B. We stumbled upon Sushi U by chance and we were pleasantly surprised at the quality of the food.

We got seated in one of many spacious tatami rooms. There were 7 or 8 lunch sets to choose from ranging from HK$150 to HK$250. My sashimi rice set had all the usual suspects. I was not particularly happy with the selections as I do not like cooked prawns, roes, nor octopus normally. Luckily everything was very fresh and I was happily polishing everything up at the end.
Teriyaki beef set. Lean and great cut of meat, V said it was delicious.
Interesting this is called the ladies' sushi set. Maybe the name is a reflection of the quantity, which we found to be plenty. If I remember correctly it is about the same price as my sushi set and I was secretly cursing myself for not ordering this set instead.
Red bean ice cream as dessert. Even the ice cream was delicious! We wonder what dinner is like at this place? Lunch was definitely good value although service was slow.
Sushi U
3/F, Century Square, 1-13 D'Aguilar St., Central, Hong Kong. Tel: 2537-9393

Zelo Bar and Restaurant

We went to Zelo because we were too tired to walk anywhere else. We didn't have a lot of expectation and still we found our dishes pretty flat.

Wagyu burger and fries (HK$228). Who doesn't do Wagyu burger these days? Despite the wagyu beef burger was pretty standard but the fries were good.
Paella for two (HK$398). The portion was not big enough for two and we were not big eaters. There were clams, prawns and squid, all tasted pretty fresh. Could use more in quantity though.
Service was friendly but the place was infested with mosquito! I had 4 or 5 bites at the end and we had no idea where they came from?

Zelo Bar and Restaurant
Shop 007, LG1, Pacific Place, 88 Queensway, Hong Kong. Tel: 2918-1028

Rice Paper

A quick lunch at Rice Paper. To our surprises the lemongrass pork was delicious! Juicy and tender, it had all the right flavours and a nice presence of lemongrass.
My pho with Vietnamese pork sausages, on the other hand, was mediocre at best. The only up side was it was not heavy on MSG.
We had an order of soft-shell crab but it simply did not show up. We asked for it twice and subsequently cancelled it. By the time our bill came we saw the dish being carried out! Oh well. It was 3pm and the place was not busy at all so we had no idea why it took so long.

Shop 3319, Gateway Arcade, Harbour City, TST, Hong Kong. Tel: 3151-7801

Green Cottage

I finally made it back to Green Cottage 14 months since my previous visit. We had to order everything naturally!

Our spring rolls were piping hot and crispy.
We had 4 orders of nem chua (naem in Thai). We are famous at the restaurant as we consume them by the ton!
Eggs in sweet soy stew: a nostalgia for our early years, especially for my sister as she was constantly eating them when she was young.
Beef pho. The broth was not as good as before but it was still yummy.
Beef and noodles in curry soup. I wish I knew the secret of this curry soup as it's simply the best.
Green Cottage
2/F, Gigna Tower, 482 Jaffe Rd., Causeway Bay, Hong Kong. Tel: 2832-286

Dragon Air

Shanghai to Hong Kong, lunch. For western there was the usual salad then fish or beef for main courses. On the other hand the Chinese menu looked so much nicer so here we go.

To start there was soup with chicken and ham and jellyfish salad on the side. The soup was quite salty (because of the ham) but the chicken was tender. The jellyfish salad was a bit too soggy and had too much vinegar dressing.
There were 2 main courses: braised pork ribs in sugar and vinegar sauce. Ribs were really tender and the sauce was yummy.
Scallops in XO sauce. The scallops were huge and the sauce not spicy at all - I wouldn't have known it was XO sauce if it wasn't for the menu. As usual the veggies were overcooked. I did enjoy all the meaty scallops and I couldn't believe how big the portion was.
Instead of the Chinese soupy dessert I went for ice cream. It came pretty close to the best airline meal, right after this one.


Hong Kong to Shanghai. Business starter: smoked salmon salad.
Fist class starter: same dish, same ingredients but different presentation.
Business main: chicken and mash. The chicken legs were grilled and they were pretty moist and tender. The gravy was actually quite close to real gravy! Yum!
First class main: steak and roasted potates. For once the steak was not overcooked but since it's pre-cooked and kept warm it didn't have that fresh-off-the-grill aroma. Still it was pretty good for airplane food.
Dessert was Haagen Dazs again - it's probably the best dessert arrangement and I wish other airlines would do it too.

Da Marco

Dinner at Da Marco. As usual the place was packed. I don't dislike busy restaurants but it's very uncomfortable when the tables are 2 inches away from each other. I know Da Marco is not shooting for upscale dining but still.

We ordered a number of starters to share. Antipasto platter.
Tuna salad.
Clams cooked in white wine sauce.
Soup with seafood.
For our main courses we had pizza.
Lasagna. We were so full we didn't touch the lasagna and decided to doggy-bag it. To our horror the bus lady cut and squashed the thing into a small round container. It was so dreadful looking we sent it back. To give them credit the waitress swiftly apologized and took it off our bill.
Food was good value and generally tasty but it's too crammed to enjoy our meal.

Da Marco
103 Dong Zhu An Bang Rd. (nr. Zhen Ning Rd)., Shanghai. Tel: 6210-4495

Lisboa Macau Restaurant

I was hungry. I was desperate. And I still regretted eating this food. It was on the afternoon tea specials and my theory was that it can't be too bad if it's a signature dish the restaurant plugged. Well I couldn't be more wrong. The curry sauce was so salty I knew I would be in trouble. I usually have a pretty high tolerance of MSG but in this case even I was feeling very uncomfortable. I cursed and cursed for the rest of the afternoon. Never again!
Lisboa Macau Restaurant
B1, Times Square, 99 Huaihai Rd., Shanghai. Tel: 63910866


My first McMuffin in Shanghai. Somehow breakfast here ends at 9:30a.m. and unlike in Hong Kong, McMuffin is all on the all-day menu. The verdict: plasticky egg, salty sausage and very greasy. Just like the McMuffin we know. Good for hangovers!