By Arthur Tam
The launch of the revamped Tong Chong Street Market (TCSM) in November was a huge success. Guests were well caffeinated at the Coffee Festival, and we are just now starting to come down from the jitters, right in time for the warmth of the Pot Festival. Soul-lifting comfort foods, as you know, are usually cooked in a pot, either crock, stone or ceramic. It's a vessel that concentrates all the deliciousness and flavours from ingredients over a slow simmer. Just think of all the hearty stews, wholesome broths and celebratory hot pot all in one place at Tong Chong Street Market. It’s a yummy thought and the idea sprung from Swire Properties and Twins Kitchen.
Brother duo Joshua and Caleb Ng of Twins Kitchen are restaurateurs, chefs, consultants and food celebs in the city and they’ve teamed up with Swire Properties and Honestly Green to curate the selection of F&B vendors for the entirety of this season’s TCSM. ‘We use the language of food to bring the people and the city together,’ says Joshua.
Ahead of the Pot Festival, Joshua gives us the scoop on each of the vendors and tells us why we've got to go to TCSM and have a taste for ourselves.
Well Dumpling Bar
“We chose them because they are newcomers in the market and they make exceptional dumplings. They don't even have a storefront or any press yet, but they are going to make an exclusive debut at TCSM with a dish of pan-seared dumplings over a noodle soup. TCSM has been an incredible platform for F&B startups to test the market. Little Bao did the same thing here years ago.”
“We have our own stall for each of the TCSM themes. So, for the Pot Festival, we are going to use two secret soup bases from Ser Wong Fun, but it won't be snake soup (which Ser Wong Fun is known for). As you know, Ser Wong Fun also makes delicious double-boiled soups, so we'll be incorporating that instead, along with produce from local farmers. We are excited about this collaboration because we are creating a synergy between local producers, traditional restaurants and newer upstarts like ourselves.” twins-kitchen.com
The Drunken Pot
“They create some of the most innovative soup bases for hot pot, some which are infused with alcohol. They also use the freshest ingredients, especially when it comes to seafood. For TCSM they are going to serve some tender Angus beef infused with their own brand of sake and homemade sauce. There will also be black truffle with assorted mushroom soups, and, for those of us who like it spicy, a mouth-numbing Sichuan style broth that comes with bean curd, pork slices and adorable penguin-shaped cuttlefish balls.” thedrunkenpot.com
“We absolutely love the guys at Co Thánh. Brian Woo of Three Monkeys was under the tutelage of the Lunch Lady from Hồ Chí Minh City and decided to bring her famous recipes to Hong Kong. At Co Thánh, they slow cook their own soup and don't add any MSG. It tastes really authentic, which is rare for Vietnamese cuisine in this city. For TCSM, they will be making something exclusive, exotically Vietnamese but not off the menu at their restaurant. So, make sure to come and check it out.” facebook.com/cothanhrestaurant
Sum Siu Bar N Grill
“This izakaya in Causeway Bay is going to be serving lip-smackingly good stewed dishes. They have a konnyaku and pork cube stew as well as a braised beef brisket with tendon and radish. The meat is juicy and tender while balancing sweet and savoury flavours. We like how this restaurant makes Japanese food with a Hong Kong touch. It's much more approachable and a perfect complement to TCSM's street fair vibe.” facebook.com/SumSiuBarNGrill
“Kevin Lim, who is also the owner of Kasa, opened Mean Noodles because he wanted to introduce some authentic Laksa. He’s Malaysian after all. For TCSM he will be making nyonya laksa, aka ‘curry mee’. This dish is made with high-quality herbs and spices, making a flavourful broth. Absolutely no MSG is added to preserve the purity of the soup base.” facebook.com/meannoodles
“This is probably one of the best Korean restaurants in Hong Kong. The chef hails from Korea and has a Michelin background. He creates modern Korean dishes and for TCSM will be making a special warming bibimbap. This will be one of the non-soup-based items, but it's made in a stone pot, so it counts.” momojein.hk
Indulge in all the savoury cuisines at the al fresco hot-pot zone. This new hot pot experience in TCSM allows you to get various kinds of fresh local ingredients and select your own soup bases. In addition, all the earnings gained from the broth will be donated to the food rescue and assistance charity Food Angel. Let’s do pot for good!
Once you’re full from tasting all the deliciousness at TCSM, you should hop over to ArtisTree and check out the new Tintin exhibition. Get all the details here: