I spent this past Sunday with friend and fellow food freak, Natasha. She invited me to go with her to spin class at Fitness First, followed by lunch in the area.
After one of the longest hours of my life, I left spin class doubting whether I would have the guts to come again – but feeling great, nevertheless.
Our first stop was at YuYu Sushi. I’m always up to try out a new sushi/Japanese restaurant, because I think there’s a lot of quality/price variety in Hong Kong since it’s such a popular cuisine out here.
The staff here were friendly and accommodating, allowing us to make small changes to the Lunch Sets without any confusion or complaints.
I ordered a Lunch Set with your typical Sweet Shrimp/Salmon/Yellow Fin/Scallop/Octopus Sushi combo that came with Beef Udon, Miso Soup and Salad sides.
I completely forgot to take a photo of the sushi platter, but no matter – it was really the sides that I was impressed with at YuYu!
Normally, for a Lunch Set in your typical HK Sushi joint, the sides are mediocre. A miso soup will normally be packet-made with a few cubes of tofu and small squares of seaweed floating in it.
At YuYu, I was thrilled to find numerous goodies waiting for me in the miso soup: a tender and fatty chunk of salmon; shitake mushroom; blanched cabbage; enoki mushrooms; tofu; and onion!! Now, that’s more like it!
When the waiter set down my Beef Udon, I was immediately taken aback… Usually, a Beef Udon side dish will be small; this bowl was big enough to be its own meal!
Not only that, the beef was served rare – which many other sushi restaurants neglect to do – which allowed me to enjoy the excellent flavour and texture longer, before the soup slowly cooked the meat.
Natasha ordered a Salmon/Urchin sashimi rice, but opted to change the urchins to more salmon making this, as she proclaimed, “salmon on salmon”. All was fresh on a bed of irresistible Japanese rice.
Although our lunch consisted of large portions, luckily the gym had made us extra hungry, leaving a little room for a sweet treat…
For out last stop, we went to one of Hong Kong’s best cupcake shops: Sift. Although, quite annoyingly, there is no seating area inside Sift (eating on the street is unpleasant in summer weather, so we ended up standing awkwardly inside the shop), the cupcakes definitely made up for it.
There are enough choices to make you dizzy, so in the end I selected a Lemon Cupcake for myself and Natasha got a Coconut Cupcake: two simple, straightforward flavours to test.
Although we ended up splitting them half-and-half to try more, I ended up preferring my choice; and Natasha preferred hers.
Bakker’s Choice: Lemon Cupcake
The cupcake body had a gentle lemon taste with each bite. Despite being moist and buttery, this cupcake was much lighter than the cupcake I tried in the States last summer. Topping the cupcake was a sugary-gritty lemon vanilla buttercream icing. Mildly hardened after setting, this type of icing is my favourite kind. The flavour brought memories back of my Mom’s homemade Lemon Meringue pie… perfection!
Natasha’s Choice: Coconut Cupcake
The icing here had a coconut flavoured cream cheese base: soft and smooth in texture to contrast with the crisp of the decorative and tasty coconut shavings. The sour quality of the cream cheese was paired nicely with its vanilla cake body.
Although the idea of another spin class this coming Sunday terrifies me a bit, the fact that Wan Chai has these kinds of treats to offer within such short walking distance of one another, is a sign that I should probably keep at it!
I wonder where next Sunday take me…
p.s. check out my latest editorial shoot, for this week’s issue of Oriental Sunday‘s magazine supplement, More Magazine: