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    Hong Kong Update

    We went to Hong Kong and hit the ground hard to bring back the intel. We might have come home with no unused currency and having eaten too much, but it was worth it. Speaking of eating, Jon Favreau is back with a heartwarming, personal, and terrific film about a chef called, well Chef. Don't leave us alone with this food p*rn...

    Other bits too.

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    Nerding Out On Food
     
    nerding out on foodnerding out on food   The new Jon Favreau movie, Chef, just opened in limited-release to rave reviews from the foodie crowd, and no wonder: It's food p*rn to the max. Not only does it herald Favreau's return to the indie fold (he's been swallowed up by Marvel for a few years), but the movie celebrates one of our other passions: Food trucks. Roy Choi, of L.A. food truck fame, was the technical advisor on the film, who also taught Favreau how to cook. Meanwhile, if you don't want to chase Choi's Kogi truck down (more on that later), you can now grab a seat at POT, his brand-new restaurant at The Line Hotel in downtown L.A.

    POT
    3515 Wilshire Blvd.
    213.368.3030

    Must orders: Potato pancakes with kimchi, uni fried rice, rice hot pots, and the "Basil," which includes Old Overholt Whiskey, lemon, and honey.
     
     
    MORE FOR YOUR FOOD VIEWING PLEASURE
     
    Whether you’re an avid cook or just like to grab a stool in the kitchen and watch other people chop and dice, there’s something pretty addicting about these two food-obsessed video sites.
     
    Film Strip Film Strip
     
    Mad   ChefSteps
     
    Spearheaded by Rene Redzepi of NOMA fame, this is like TED for foodies. MAD holds an annual two-day symposium in Copenhagen with an impressive list of industry luminaries who, for about 30 minutes each, wax lyrical on a chosen theme. This summer, Brazil’s star chef Alex Atala is co-curating talks on the topic, "What is Cooking?" and there’s still room to sign up for a spot. With past participants like Ferran Adrià, David Chang, Jonathan Gold, and Wylie Dufresne, we imagine this year’s roster—and the cutting-edge ideas discussed—surely won’t disappoint. The good news is that every single video from the past three years is archived on the site, so if Copenhagen’s out of reach, the content certainly isn’t.   It won’t come as a surprise that some of the team behind Modernist Cuisine—the weighty tome that introduced the general public to the ins and outs of molecular gastronomy—is behind this site, which is loaded with meticulously-shot, precise, step-by-step cooking class videos. They introduce and demonstrate professional techniques like Sous Vide Cooking and Spherification (yes, that’s "imbuing a flavorful liquid with the appearance of being solid") into the home kitchen, with recipes tailored to your ability and how decked out your kitchen is. They’ll also point you in the direction of the tools you need and show you ways of getting around those tools if, say, you don’t happen to have a PolyScience Immersion Circulator kicking around. Whether you intend to apply the skills or not, the predominately word-free videos are totally addicting.
     
     
     
    Hong Kong Update

    There just might be more shopping per square foot in this bustling harbor metropolis than there is in any other city in the world—exquisite Chinese food just seals the deal. We’ve rounded up more favorites to add to our original Hong Kong guide.

    HK scrapbook

    Perfect Peking duck
    at China Tang.

    Quintessential tourist.

    Modern Hong Kong—
    still dotted with old-world moments.

    Always gooping.

    A sea of new discoveries at
    Harvey Nichols.

    Tea leaf eggs.
    #streetfood

    Beautiful Chinese
    broccoli in The Lanes.

    I should have
    bought this top.
    #buyersregret

    Too avant-garde?

    Verre églomisé at
    Tang Tang Tang Tang.

     
    STAY
    • Mandarin Oriental
    • Mandarin Oriental

      The Landmark, 15 Queens Rd., Central | 852.2132.0188

       

      This new, ultra-contemporary, boutique-like addition to the Mandarin Oriental Hong Kong family offers only 100-odd rooms, making it a bit less bustling than its flagship counterpart. Though it occupies a smaller footprint, they most definitely have not scrimped on amenities: There's an amazing two-story spa, the rooms are huge, and lavish touches abound, which is pretty much what you’d expect from a MO hotel.

    DO:
    • Bank of China Tower

      Bank of China Tower

      1 Garden Rd., Central

       

      Though it’s still a place of serious business, this iconic, I.M. Pei-designed masterpiece—impossible to miss on the Hong Kong skyline thanks to its triangle-flecked sides—allows visitors to its observation deck. When it was constructed in 1990, it was the tallest building outside of the United States—and while it’s now dwarfed by three other Hong Kong skyscrapers, it still provides sweeping views of the city. You’ll need to show your passport at the security desk.

    • Star Ferry

      Star Ferry

      Star Ferry Pier, Man Kwong St. | 852.2367.7065

       

      For less than 50 cents, grab a Star Ferry from Hong Kong Island to Kowloon, a service that’s been in operation since the 19th century. It’s essential to get out on the water (you’ll see myriad fisherman motoring home with their daily catch), as there’s nothing quite like the view of Victoria Harbour from Tsim Sha Tsui—particularly at night. Despite the insane lightshow that happens post-sunset, you can almost imagine what it would have been like back in the tea trading days.

    • The Lanes

      The Lanes

      Ko Shing St. and Wing Lok St.

       

      From butchers offering every component of a cow—tails, hearts, hooves, et al—to fish mongers, to Chinese Medicine doctors, these steeply-inclined streets are an incredibly way to experience the heart of old-world Hong Kong.

    • The Peak

      The Peak

      The Peak Terminus, 33 Garden Rd., Central

       

      Hong Kong ranges along the water for many reasons: For one, it’s been a bustling harbor for centuries; for two, the center of the island is dominated by a giant mountain, which you can ascend, by funicular tram, for unparalleled views. It’s absolutely worth it on a clear day—and actually doesn’t take much time.

    • The China Club

      The China Club

      Old Bank of China Building, 1 Bank St., 13th Floor, Central | 852.2521.8888

       

      If you happen to know a member of this club, hit them up for an invite (a good hotel concierge should probably be able to get you in, too): It's the closest thing to a contemporary Chinese art museum in Hong Kong, with an unparalleled collection.

    • Man Mo Temple

      Man Mo Temple

      126 Hollywood Rd., Central

       

      Though it's not gilded and grand on the outside, when you step inside this temple—built in 1847—and look up, you’re met by a seemingly endless span of incense coils, all suspended from the ceiling. Each is about two to three feet long, and combined with the smell, makes for a powerful experience.

    SHOP
    • Mr. Blacksmith

      Mr. Blacksmith

      7 Gough St., Central | 852.2581.1110

       

      Dark and moodily-lit, the emphasis here is on industrial, old-world home goods, which might sound strange, but is actually quite cool: There are old-fashioned enamel hooks, simple mugs and plates, along with everyday-useful things, like the perfect broom. (It’s from the same team as Homeless, so expect a similarly extensive array.)

    • Cocktail Select Shop

      Cocktail Select Shop

      G10-11 Leighton Centre, Causeway Bay | 852.2907.4388 (plus other locations)

       

      While its name might evoke the concept of basic little black dresses, everything in this mini-chainlet of boutiques (up-and-running since 2002) is more exuberant garden party than formal affair. There are labels from Europe (BA&SH, Manoush) and the U.S. (Textile Elizabeth & James), but go for the fun Asian lines like Daydream Nation, Iliann Loeb, and Coohem.

    • D-Mop

      D-Mop

      11-15 On Lan St., Central | 852.2840.0822 (plus other locations)

       

      While there are many of these streetwear-inspired shops scattered across Hong Kong Island and Kowloon, we like the multi-story outpost in Central best: There you’ll find an ever-so-slightly more out-there edit than you’ll ever see in the states, all carefully selected from labels like Stella McCartney, Preen, and Anne-Sofie Beck. (There’s a lot for guys, too.)

    • Harvey Nichols

      Harvey Nichols

      The Landmark, 15 Queen's Rd., Central | 852.3695.3388 (plus other locations)

       

      While you might not typically gravitate to a Harvey Nichols in Asia, there’s a lot here that you can’t get back in London (or in the U.S. for that matter). While they’ve bought deep into labels like Victoria Beckham and 3.1 Phillip Lim, we were most enthralled with the labels from China, Japan, and Singapore, which we had never seen before. Ultimately, it’s an amazing store for discovering new talent.

    • Homeless

      Homeless

      28 Gough St., Central | 852.2851.1160 (plus other locations)

       

      This quickly-growing string of shops are like mini-department stores for modern home goods, and as such, they’ve pretty much cornered the market on every big name in design, from Hay to Seletti to Tom Dixon to Artecnica. The spaces are moody and industrial (one of the outposts is actually housed in a string of shipping containers), which makes the experience all the more fun to browse.

    • Initial

      Initial

      Tak Woo House, 17-19 D’Aguilar St., Central | 852.2537.0663 (plus other locations)

       

      When a popular boutique springs up, it seems to be the way that many are soon to follow: One such success story is Initial, a burgeoning empire of other-worldly spaces that feel like 19th-century ateliers. There are home goods (West Third Brand candles, Areo terrariums, Puebco diaries), a house line of clothing, plus labels like Tucker, Karen Walker, and Rachel Comey.

    • Joyce

      Joyce

      New World Tour, 18 Queens Rd., Central | 852.2810.1120

       

      Since 1971, Joyce has been sourcing the most interesting and forward-thinking labels in the world, and bringing them to Hong Kong. Balenciaga, Altuzarra, and Balmain mingle with Frame Denim, Mawi jewelry, and The Elder Statesmen cashmere. While the pricetags match the pieces, we've heard that there are incredible deals to be found at the Joyce Warehouse in Horizon Plaza in Aberdeen (there's also a Lane Crawford outlet there).

    • Landmark

      Landmark

      1 Exchange Sq., Central | 852.2842.8524

       

      Hong Kong has to have more malls per capita than any other city in the world, which is probably one of the reasons they're so good at them: Truly, you can't walk a block without running into a superlative shopping center. When it comes to Landmark, think of every global label you'd ever want to shop under one roof, and you'll find it here, including Isabel Marant, Carven, Balenciaga, Dries van Noten, Kenzo, Rick Owens, and Valentino.

    • Callixto

      Callixto

      11 Mee Lun St. | 852.6316.9551

       

      Several years ago, Sasha Dennig—part Austrian and part Chinese—decided to search the world for treasures, and sell her finds online. Now, she’s opened a bricks-and-mortar boutique, where you can literally shop the globe. Dennig has sourced and imported Otomi table runners from Mexico, elephant-bedecked earrings from India, and silver knotted bracelets from Greece.

    • The9thMuse

      The9thMuse

      One Lyndhurst Tower, No.1 Lyndhurst Terrace, 12th Fl., Central | 852.2537.7598

       

      If you can’t make it to the 12th floor of Lyndhurst Tower, rest assured that this excellently curated jewelry shop does a brisk e-commerce business—and ships internationally. There are diamond pave rings from Hikaru Jewels and Alex Mika, along with tribal-inflected necklaces from A Peace Treaty and statement earrings by Lionette. There are also scarves, handbags, and a smattering of home goods.

    • On Pedder (Pedder Red)

      On Pedder

      Joyce, New World Tower, 18 Queens Rd., Central | 852.2118.3489

       

      On Pedder focuses on accessories, and nothing else—an unerringly specific devotion that pays off in spades: Here, you’ll find one of the best edits in Asia, if not the globe. Charlotte Olympia, Brian Atwood, and Marni mingle with Mary Katrantzou, Junya Watanabe, and Pierre Hardy. Though there are standalone boutiques across Asia, the On Pedder in Central actually lives as part of Joyce.

    • Petit Bazaar

      Petit Bazaar

      9 Gough St., Central | 852.2544.2255 | 80 Queens Rd. East, Wan Chai | 852.2528.0229

       

      This is one of those kids-focused shops that has huge appeal, even if you don’t have little ones back at home: Primarily because it’s more lifestyle boutique than toy store, and many of the design-centric picks would look right at home on someone’s coffee table, rather than in the playroom. (Meanwhile, you’ll want all the clothing in adult sizes.) Our picks: Fold and go farmyards, sundresses emblazoned with lips, and lunchboxes covered with a print of a vintage map.

    • Tang Tang Tang Tang

      Tang Tang Tang Tang

      66 Johnston Rd., Wan Chai | 852.2525.2112

       

      Sir David Tang launched, built, and ultimately sold Shanghai Tang. Now, he and his wife Lucy are at it again, but with a twist: Tang Tang Tang Tang offers wares for every room in the house (including the closet). Everything is impeccably crafted—and made in China, though priced to be accessible to China's "rising middle class." We cleared them out of their silk Chinese zodiac pajamas and silver tumblers.

    • Vein

      Vein

      2 St. Francis Yard, Wan Chai | 852.2804.1038

       

      It may seem strange to shop for Scandinavian labels in Hong Kong, but the edit here is so spot-on—from stand-out lines like Humanoid, Hope, by Malene Birger—and the palette is so clean and muted, the racks prove irresistible. Besides being unisex, there’s also a nice range of home goods from similarly Nordic designers like Hay and Skultana.

    • Lala Curio

      Lala Curio

      32-33 Sau Wa Fong, Wan Chai | 852.2528.5007

       

      Laura Cheung’s grandfather hand-carved tables out of rosewood; her father built one of China’s largest ceramics factories; and so Cheung determined to continue the tradition. Her line of home goods and furniture draws on centuries of China’s more famous techniques, which she channels into gorgeously turned-out pieces, from lacquer boxes to Cloisonné tile trays.

    • Kapok

      Ka-pok

      5 St. Francis Yard, Wan Chai | 852.2549.9254 | 3 Sun St., Wan Chai | 852.2520.0114 (plus other locations)

       

      While the focus at this much-loved Hong Kong staple is men, there’s plenty to appeal to both sexes, from the Rivieras slip-ons to the Astier de Villatte candles. There’s a bit that’s solely for women, too, including Sessun slip dresses, striped tops from Le Mont St Michel and enamel lockets by Trois Petit Points.

    • Monocle

      Monocle

      T1-4 St. Francis Yard, Wan Chai | 852.2804.2323

       

      Occupying a sun-drenched corner in one of the sweetest little shopping squares in Hong Kong (Star, Sun, and St. Francis Yard sit just above one of the city’s busiest drags), this sliver of a space offers everything you’d expect from the magazine-turned-lifestyle-brand. You’ll find many of Monocle’s collaborations with companies like Oliver Peoples and Yuketen, along with plenty of back issues.

    EAT
    • Bibo

      Bibo

      163 Hollywood Rd., Sheung Wan | 852.2956.3188

       

      Street art is having a big moment in Hong Kong, and this brand-new, much-hyped restaurant is arguably its epicenter. There are installations from Takashi Murakami, Kaws, Koons, and Mr. Brainwash—a distractingly cool backdrop for the fusion French fare. The food stands up on its own, though a meal here is really more about the scene.

    • Man Wah

      Man Wah

      Mandarin Oriental, 5 Connaught Rd., Central | 852.2552.0111

       

      If you're in the mood for superlative dim sum, look no further than Man Wah, which is perched on top of the flagship Mandarin Oriental. The setting is impeccable and old-world, and the dim sum is exactly what you want after a long flight to Asia.

    • Café Gray Deluxe

      Café Gray

      The Upper House, Pacific Place, 88 Queensway, 49th Floor | 852.3968.1106

       

      If you can’t make it up to The Peak, breakfast at Café Gray, the Gray Kunz restaurant on top of The Upper House (one of our favorite Hong Kong hotels), is a good stand-in. You’ll get a sweeping view of the harbor from the 49th floor while you munch on shitake and watercress omelettes or steamed pork buns and crabmeat congee.

    • China Tang

      China Tang

      Landmark, One Exchange Square, 4th Floor, Central | 852.2522.2148

       

      China Tang is inarguably one of our favorite restaurants in London—in fact, it’s one of our favorite Chinese restaurants in the world. Sir David Tang (also of Tang Tang Tang Tang, above) recently introduced the enterprise to Hong Kong, and even in a sea of delectable Asian fare, it still stands out.

    • Fuel Espresso

      Fuel Espresso

      Landmark, One Exchange Square, Basement, Central | 852.2869.9019

       

      It can be frustratingly difficult to find a great cup of coffee in Hong Kong. Flat Whites are the specialty here, and they're excellent.

    • Little Bao

      Little Bao

      66 Staunton St., Central | 852.2194.0202

       

      As the name suggests, the focus here is on baos, i.e., Vietnamese buns filled with pork and fish, though the sides are equally compelling: There are brussel sprouts (topped with fish sauce and fried shallots) and sambal-inflected fries, along with slabs of green tea ice cream sandwiched between deep-fried buns.

    • Lock Cha Tea House

      Lock Cha Tea House

      The K.S. Lo Gallery, Hong Kong Park, Admiralty | 852.2801.7177

       

      When you’ve had too much pork, turn to this sweet, traditional Chinese tea house, which serves vegetarian dim sum. Beyond dumplings, they offer more than 100 varieties of tea (which are also for sale in the shop).

    • Mak Noodles

      Mak Noodles

      77 Wellington St., Central | 852.2854.3810

       

      While this noodle shop offers little in the way of atmosphere (expect glass-topped tables, flimsy paper napkins, and soda out of the can), the won ton noodles are served quick and delicious, making this the perfect pit-stop for a fast and cheap lunch.

    • Mott 32

      Mott 32

      Standard Chartered Building, 4-4a Des Voeux Rd., Central | 852.2885.8688

       

      Named after the site of New York City's Chinatown's first convenience store, this Chinese fine dining spot celebrates the global influence of Cantonese cooking. There's a traditional dim sum menu, along with a more rarified dinner offering, which includes dishes like roasted whole pigeon, wok-fried abalone, and sweet and sour pork.

    • The Pawn

      The Pawn

      62 Johnston Rd., Wan Chai | 852.2866.3444

       

      Many of Hong Kong’s oldest buildings have succumbed to the city’s sprawl of skyscrapers, which makes this new arrival unique. It lives in a former, multi-level pawnshop (thus the name), which dates back to 1941. Though it opened in 2007, a careful branding (in part by Hong Kong creative agency WhiteSpace makes it feel like it’s been there forever, in the best possible way.

    • Ping Pong 129

      Ping Pong 129

      Nam Cheong House, 129 Second St., Sai Ying Pun | 852.9158.1584

       

      A gin bar in a former ping pong hall might sound a bit random—and its location in Sai Ying Pun is slightly out-of-the-way—but this brand-new arrival is rad, from the original architectural flourishes and subterranean location to the Spanish tapas and the gin-based cocktail menu.

    • Stockton

      Stockton

      32 Wyndham St., Central | 852.2565.5268

       

      Mumbai Government Punch (Mount Gay Rum, Hennessy Cognac, Lime, Green Tea, Nutmeg, Demerara gum) and Ribston Apples (Spiced Rum, Amaretto, Apple Cider, Honey, Cinnamon) are just a few of the offerings at this new, Victorian-inflected spot, which stays open "late." The food, which revolves around seafood, is equally inventive and compelling: There’s Rock Cod & Chips (tooped with Soda Batter Pickled Tartar Sauce), Soldiers & Egg (Sea Urchin & Slow-Cooked Duck’s Egg, Toast), and oysters, obviously. The spot is tucked-away (down a dark alley, behind an unmarked door), and the vibe is curio closet meets speakeasy, which makes it fun all around.

    • Yard Bird

      Yard Bird

      33-35 Bridges St., Sheung Wan | 852.2547.9273

       

      Yard Bird doesn’t take reservations, which doesn’t deter the crowds from lining up every night: The menu is all about chicken, served yakitori style, and it doesn’t disappoint. While the focus seems specific, they’re unsparing in skewering and barbecuing every part of the bird, from the neck to the heart, to the liver (you can get basic breasts, too). For vegetarians, there are plenty of delectable sides, including sweet corn tempura and eggplant salad.

     
     
    Stripped
     
    site unseen
     
    ICFF (The International Contemporary Furniture Fair) hits New York City this week—and per usual, it will be drawing a huge crowd of design junkies and furniture buyers to town (it's one of the world's best opportunities to see up-and-coming talent). Like any tradeshow of its size, there are a ton of auxiliary events that spring up across the city, from gallery openings to design events. For our part, we'll be heading to Sight Unseen OFFSITE, where founders Jill Singer and Monica Khemsurov have assembled 50 hand-picked exhibitors. For one weekend only (and for free), you can walk—and shop—the 17,000 square foot space in Soho, where you’ll see Fredericks & Mae’s totally amazing collection of brushes and windsocks, Brook & Lyn’s wall tapestries (we’re already obsessed), Grey Area’s Versa table, and Calico’s gorgeous new Aurora wallpaper collection.
     
    site unseen
     
     
     

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