DRAGON NOODLES ACADEMY Presents Traditional Dishes With ‘A Tasting Journey In Nostalgic Guangzhou’ Menu Paying Tribute To Kung Fu Icon Bruce Lee
(Hong Kong) – DRAGON NOODLES ACADEMY (DNA) in the heart of Hong Kong’s central business district, and known for its retro Kung Fu-themed decor, is going classic with its ‘A Tasting Journey in Nostalgic Guangzhou’ paying tribute to Kung Fu icon Bruce Lee. Available just in time for Father’s Day, from today to 31 August, diners can savour a taste of the past, as many of the disappearing dishes on this menu are from a bygone era.
Awarded ‘The Plate Michelin 2018’, the nostalgic restaurant is reminiscent of 1970s Kung Fu academies – complete with elements of old Hong Kong such as lion dances, traditional Chinese herbal medicine shops and hand-carved dragons, and has set Hong Kong’s social media abuzz with its eye-catching dishes since opening in November 2016 at Man Yee Arcade on Des Voeux Road Central.
DNA’s ‘A Tasting Journey in Nostalgic Guangzhou’ Menu features traditional dim sum dishes created by Executive Chef Winson Yip and savoury delicacies by Deputy Executive Chef KC Mak. Chef Yip’s specialties showcased include vintage-style siu mai – Steamed Siu Mai Pork Dumplings with Quail Egg (3 pcs) (HK$59), and the sinfully delicious Steamed Siu Mai Pork Dumplings with Pork Liver (2 pcs) (HK$59), of which pig liver happens to be one of Bruce Lee’s favourite foods.
Meanwhile, Chef Mak recommends the classic Cantonese Double-Boiled Whole Winter Melon with Lobster and Crab Meat in Soup (HK$369, only available at dinner time), featuring such quality ingredients as lobster and crab meat, which is reputed to help reduce heat, and is good for weight loss and prevent swelling.
Diners can opt for several traditional savoury items that are now a rarity on Hong Kong restaurant menus, such as Eight-Treasure Duck with Lily Bulbs, Salted Egg Yolk, Coix Seed, Quinoa, Lotus Seed, Shiitake Mushroom, Chestnut and Conpoy (HK$489, advance order is required), a classic banquet dish said to be popular since the Qing Dynasty. As the name suggests, in this traditional recipe, the duck is deboned and stuffed with eight ingredients. Once the duck cavity is sliced open, the intense fragrance that wafts out is simply irresistible.
Another highly nostalgic dish is Stir-fried Sliced Pigeon with Fresh Pineapple and Ginger (HK$189), a summery dish using young birds from Shek-Ki in Guangdong, which is synonymous with excellent pigeons, bringing a slightly gamey and subtle salty taste.
The menu also spotlights other once-familiar dishes, including Steamed Fish Head in Chinese Gooseberry Sauce (HK$169), and Deep-fried Pastries Stuffed with Pork, Crab Meat and Coriander (HK$189), a reminder of classic Chiu Chow dishes. The enticing crab pastries feature handmade dough made with freshly squeezed chive juice, and the succulent crab meat brings out the umami flavour of the dish.
Another nostalgic Guangzhou classic dish is Baked Fish Intestines with Egg, Deep-Fried Dough Fritter and Dried Tangerine Peel (HK$139). A typical Hakka cuisine, fish intestines are thoroughly cleaned and steamed in the dish, along with ginger, garlic chives, and dried mandarin peel. Beaten eggs are added before the casserole is placed in the oven where the eggs are set like a frittata.
Diners will also enjoy tucking into Pan-Fried Lotus Root Paste Cakes (HK$149), as well as Deep-Fried Quail Legs Wrapped in Paper (HK$189).
The culinary team at DNA insists on the tradition of Cantonese dishes that use less oil, less salt, no added MSG and no artificial colouring, offering a healthier interpretation of the disappearing dishes, which are traditionally perceived to be fatty and unhealthy options.
“Food has an incredible power to evoke memories. At DNA, our retro Kung Fu-themed decor and the new ‘A Tasting Journey in Nostalgic Guangzhou’ menu paying tribute to legend Bruce Lee, invite our diners to embark on a bygone culinary journey. Through this menu, we hope to remind our diners of their home, their grandma’s cooking and an idyllic childhood”, says Executive Chef of DNA, Winson Yip.
Deputy Executive Chef, K.C. Mak, has over 30 years’ experience in Chinese cuisine, and has his own memories of food. “Anyone who has lived in Hong Kong for more than 30 years will tell you about the amazing delicacies served in celebratory banquets, and our culinary team would like to bring back those vivid emotional memories to our diners.”
DNA’s decor combines time-honoured craftsmanship with Hong Kong history and pop culture, highlighting an eye-catching five-metre long dragon that greets guests as they enter the restaurant. The mythical creature was hand-carved by three artisans, and then painted in liquid gold and finished with gold leaves.
Twelve exquisitely handmade lion heads that hang on the back wall of the main dining room were created especially for DNA by “Keung’s Dragon and Lion Dance Team”, a third-generation family business that is considered one of the city’s top lion head makers.
The restaurant also highlights elements of Chinese herbal medicine shops and Kung Fu academies, complete with a Wing Chun wooden dummy at DNA’s entrance, inviting diners to practice their moves.
Yet another eye-catching item is the elegant handcrafted copper “Wulao” that are used to serve water and craft beer at DNA. It took three master craftsmen 45 days to create four “Wulaos” for the restaurant.
With one foot in the past and the other in the present, DNA aims to provide a truly unique dining experience, where guests can experience contemporary and traditional Hong Kong together in a multi-sensory fashion.
DRAGON NOODLES ACADEMY (DNA) is located at Shop no. G04, G/F, Man Yee Arcade, Man Yee Building, 68 Des Voeux Road Central, Central, Hong Kong. For reservations, please call (852) 2561-6688 or email [email protected]
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