TRYING UNIQUE HONG KONG COCKTAILS: FOOD PAIRING TIPS FROM HONG KONG SUPER FANS
Always refreshing, fun, and adding extra joy to your moments.
Winding down to the end of a busy day or celebrating the evening with friends? What better way to do so than with a glass of a Hong Kong-inspired cocktail? Always refreshing, fun, and adding extra joy to your moments, these cocktails elevate the mood with that unique twist of Hong Kong flavour.
We have the recipes covered to make your own cocktails or where to get these cocktails if you’re planning your next trip to Hong Kong. To get you started, we have asked three Hong Kong Super Fans and acclaimed food enthusiasts: Chef Yuda Bustara (@yudabustara), Eric Eko S. (@ericekos), and Mullie Marlina (@myfunfoodiary) for their food recommendations to best pair with these cocktails.
Yuen Yeung Martini
The unique flavour of Hong Kong's popular Yuen Yeung is generally made by mixing milk tea and espresso. Add some vodka and voila... you have your Yuen Yeung Martini.
Culinary diplomat and Urban Cook Chef Yuda Bustara explained that due to the cocktail’s coffee and sweet taste profile, Yuen Yeung Cocktail is really suitable to be paired with sweet dishes, such as Hong Kong’s pineapple buns or warm tofu pudding. “Imagine eating Hong Kong pineapple buns that were just cooked, then add melted and tasty butter in the middle, while enjoying this Yuen Yeung cocktail… feels just right! You can enjoy it during brunch on Sunday afternoons or even when you get together on Saturday night with friends, before continuing the party to Lan Kwai Fong,” he added.
To food enthusiast Eric Eko S., this Yuen Yeung aka Coffee Milk Tea reminds him of Hong Kong Coffee Milk Tea at Cha Chaan Teng, the ubiquitous Hong Kong-style café or diner. “This Yuen Yeung Cocktail makes it a Cha Chaan Teng 2.0 for its liquor addition”, he said. With its milky, creamy taste, this cocktail would also go well with sweet and creamy Hong Kong egg tart.
How to make it:
- 40 ml Hong Kong milk tea
- 20 ml Espresso
- 50 ml Vodka
Add all the ingredients into a Boston shaker, and dry shake. Add the ice and shake again, double strain into martini glass, and garnish with a coffee bean.
Where to get it in Hong Kong: PONG LKF, Lan Kwai Fong, Central
Tangerine Peel Tea 10yrs
Tangerine Peel Tea 10yrs used Chen Pi or dried mandarin orange peel in its recipe. Chen Pi is a traditional Hong Kong ingredient, which is also commonly used in Chinese herbal medicine. Creating a cocktail with Chen Pi adds tangerine freshness to its aroma and taste.
“Chen Pi is used as a cocktail ingredient to give a fresh and fruity taste. Cocktails made from Chen Pi are perfect pairings with something salty, savoury, and spicy! Hakau Dimsum, Wonton Noodles or Hong Kong Siu Mei would go along nicely with this cocktail,” Chef Yuda recommends.
Gui Ling Gao featuring Tangerine Peel Tea 10yrs? Why not! Eric Eko S. recommends this pair for their herbal flavours and a tad of bitter but fresh cocktail taste. Gui Ling Gao is a jelly-like dessert made of Chinese herbal ingredients. “This pairing would be the most iconic Hong Kong dessert pair!” he said.
How to make it:
- 25 ml House Infused Black Tea Vodka
- 25 ml Cointreau
- 25 ml Tequila Reposado
- 25 ml Tangerine Peel 10yrs water
- 10 ml fresh lemon juice
- 10 ml syrup
- 1 drop Angostura Bitter
Where to get it in Hong Kong: Starry Night, Tai Kok Sui, Kowloon
Chen Pi Li Tano
From entrées to desserts, Chen Pi has always been one of the most common ingredients that represent Hong Kong. If you love fresh tangerine taste cocktails, you should definitely try this!
“Hong Kong Egg Tart with its sweet egg custard base would make a great pair to this light and refreshing cocktail,” suggests Mullie Marlina. Hong Kong culinary lovers might have already been familiar with Chen Pi as it is commonly used in Hong Kong dishes. “Chen Pi can be used as a spice in the kitchen too, it doesn't have to be made into a drink. Made from dried tangerine peels, it is used a lot in Hong Kong foods to give it a fresh and fruity taste, for example in stir-fries or hotpot,” said Chef Yuda.
How to make it:
- 60 ml Chen Pi Hari Gin
- 15 ml Lemon juice
- 15 ml Olive Brine
- 15 ml Oleo Saccharum
- Add Tonic
Where to get it in Hong Kong: Lucciola Restaurant & Bar, Wan Chai, Hong Kong
Moment of Sky Lantern
Colourful Jelly Cubes are easy to be found in Hong Kong's traditional bakeries. This creative cocktail used Colourful Jelly Cubes as one of its ingredients, imagining the cubes to represent the elements of the Sky Lantern in Pingxi Lantern Festival.
And what dish is the best companion for this cocktail? For Mullie Marlina, savoury dim sum such as shrimp or charsiu chongfen, as well as fried dim sum with beef fillings would go well with this cocktail. “The ingredients for this cocktail are simple, just Gin, lemon juice, pineapple juice and Tonic then add colourful Jelly Cubes which symbolize the lantern at the Pingxi lantern festival, making this cocktail very Instagram-able and suitable for pairing with anything, for example, Hong Kong hotpot and mango pomelo dessert,” Chef Yuda explained.
“I don't think there's anything more exciting than eating hotpot in Hong Kong, there are so many choices of toppings, condiments, and protein, basically eating spicy hotpot during winter in Hong Kong with friends is an experience you have to try!”, he added.
How to make it:
- 30 ml Gin
- 5ml Lemon juice
- 30ml pineapple pure
- 100 ml Tonic
- Colourful Jelly cubes
Where to get it in Hong Kong: Wan Land Cafe, Tai Kok Sui, Hong Kong
So which cocktail is your favourite? Perhaps you would like to recreate one and enjoy it with your own favourite dishes you have in mind, or maybe planning a year-end trip to Hong Kong? Get ready to experience more tastes on a delicious adventure around Hong Kong as The Hong Kong Wine & Dine Festival 2022 is back this November. For more info, kindly visit: Hong Kong Wine & Dine Festival 2022.
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