Food and Food: Asia and Travels26 May 2011 10:16 am


My favourite meal in Hong Kong was the one we had quite a distance out of the main city core. We originally traveled out to eat some authentic bamboo noodles at Ping Kee noodles – a place, yes, featured on Anthony Bourdain’s episode of No Reservations where he went to Hong Kong.


After a 30 minute train ride and ten minute walk, we reached Tai Po market. It was a large four floored concrete building with many vendors. There was not a lot of English, and I could not recall through my flu fogged haze what the stall looked like on the episode. Additionally, I did not have 3G connectivity for my cell in Hong Kong. Gahh!

Eventually we found a wifi signal and we sussed out which stall was Ping Kee…only to find out it was closed for some reason. I am still not sure if it was a regular holiday or closed for good. There seemed to be a lot of junk in the stall, which makes me worry that it is closed for good.


By this point we were ravenous. I started to feel the pressure of three hungry bellies plus mine and was not sure where to go next. Then I remembered I had also noted a BBQ restaurant nearby. The name? Yat Lok. Another Bourdain favourite, this restaurant was a short jaunt from Tai Po market, and happily still had a table available even though it was pretty damn close to lunch and it was far from empty in the restaurant.

Since he was an incredibly kind man, the owner/chef came out to help us with the menu (since it was all in Cantonese) and explain some things in English. We all ordered different kinds of meat, but mostly pork and goose. As we waited it got busier and busier, the ladies behind the counter hurling out cups of milk tea, and the sound of the cleaver on wood and meat at the front becoming more frantic.

Our meals came out quite quickly and were…delectable. Some of the best meat I have ever had, with apologies to my father, Guy Savoy and the Salt Lick in Texas. Mike and I both got mixed plates to sample the pork and goose, and I am happy we did. The crisp sweetness of the skin on the goose gave way to a shimmering layer of fat, and tender meaty protein. I shifted back and forth between the goose and the char siu, unable to determine which I liked best. My appetite was not up to full speed so I did not eat that much rice and I have to agree with Bourdain – there was no need for the rice. Just a plate of meat would have been the best. Additionally the owner sent out some soup on the house. What a great man.

Alas a woman cannot live on meat alone. Although I would, especially if it call came from Yat Lok.

Goose on the left,  char siu on the right.

Why did I wait so long to post about this? It is only making me crave it more. Good thing we had a really delicious yakiniku meal last night.

While I am not sure I would have gone out of my way initially to eat at Yat Lok (I had planned on eating BBQ at another restaurant closer to Hong Kong) I certainly would now. Recommended.

Ping Kee bamboo noodles
2nd Floor Tai Po Cooked Food Market

Yat Lok BBQ
5, Po Wah House A, Tai Ming Lane
Exiting the MTR, follow the signs towards “Tai Po Market.” After a jaunt, you will see Tai Po market infront of you. You’ll get to an intersection with a large building, which is Tai Po Market. To get to Yat Lok, though, head down the street to the right to an open square market kind of area. Yat Lok is on the square there.

One Response to “char siu and goose at yat lok bbq, hong kong”

  1. on 26 May 2011 at 1:25 pm Kate

    Mmmmmmmm. And it MUST have been good if you were as flued up as you were and it still ranks up there with the best meat you’ve ever tasted. +100000 points for friendly, English-speaking staff!