Singapore and Hong Kong
Second day in row focused on food. Got up early to head to Sham Sui Po, a distinctly run-down neighbourhood that holds one of the better Tim Ho Wan locations, a decidedly hawker-stall-priced dim sum chain that holds a Michelin Star at some (two?) of their locations. The baked char shu baos there are why they have a Michelin star, and after two bites it's easy to see why-the crust is light and crispy, and the filling is just the right amount of sweet pork and sauce. Not quite divine, but close! Every other dish there is very good to excellent, from the small, almost-dainty shu mai to the har gow and har cheung fun, and yes, even the pork liver (!) cheung fun. Mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm.
Dirt cheap, too. Somehow they stand above their competitors (or at least lack of competitors in Sham Shui Po), even if rising rent forced them to close their Mong Kok location. Walked all over Kowloon afterwards, all the way down to Jordan, then back up to Mong Kok to catch Thomas, where we got a native's tour of all the street food in the area. Curry fish balls, fish shu mai, cold cuts (beef tongue!), stinky tofu, even a coconut drink that put almost all other coconut drinks to shame. Fish paste bits in soup, man, who knows what else we skipped-- we played it conservative, knowing we had limited stomach space! (thanks for the expertise, Thomas!)
wandered back to the hotel afterwards, where the local BBQ joint is well worth a stop for dinner. Sadly, today, they were out of barbecue! That tragedy aside, we immediately recovered. Earlier exploration of the local giganto-mall in the afternoon (New Town Mall and Citylink Plaza) didn't convince us to go back, so we hit a local place a little further down the street. The deep fried oyster omelet was very good while it was hot, bok choi was fresh, and the goose was surprisingly good for a restaurant in such a small tourist area. The clay pot was only so-so, but all things considered, it wasn't a bad meal, particularly considering how cheap it was. (US$26 or so!)