It is not everyday that you get to say that you tried 2 Michelin starred yumcha (unless you live in HK!). However, I had chance to experience this during my recent trip to Hong Kong. Most of the trip consisted of street food and local delicacies – but I made a point of booking at least one highly rated restaurant during the trip.
After doing some research, I decided on Tin Lung Heen. It is one of only a handful of 2* Michelin Restaurants in Hong Kong, and one of the only 2* Michelin Restaurants for Chinese food in the world.
Tin Lung Heen (天龍軒) is located on the 102nd Floor of the ICC in Kowloon within the Ritz Carlton Hotel complex. It is accessed through the Ritz Carlton foyer of the ICC.
The restaurant itself is very well laid out and has a very high ceiling and classy interiors. As soon as you walk in, the interior catches the eye without being too distracting.
I am seated with my dining partner and we start by ordering tea, followed by a selection of yum cha items. I had requested a window seat in advance and was lucky to secure this (and I would also recommend that you do the same!). The view from our table was amazing and overlooked Kowloon harbour to the West (with Lantau Island in the distance).
Our table itself was also well presented with two sets of chopsticks per person (apparently one for communal serving, and one for individual consumption!), wet towels and an orchid.
Our tea arrived along with some candied walnuts as a light appetizer.
From there, the food started to roll in. Technically we had a yum cha meal, however we did order a couple more substantial menu items to round out our meal. Firstly, the siu mai with golden leaf arrived – which was very tasty and paired well with their chilli sauce.
Next was the turnip cake with a prawn and chilli dressing. This was better than most turnip cakes that I have tried – the layers held together well and it had great flavour.
Another yum cha item was baked abalone puffs with duck meat. I don’t often have a chance to try abalone. It was cooked very well – soft, with a good seasoning/sauce.
We also ordered a half serve of their Iberico char siu pork (handy tip: we were advised to pre-order this at the time of our booking. They also accommodated our request for a half serve – as a full serve would have knocked out a group of 2 people!). Given that it is supposed to be their house specialty I was expecting big things. I was definitely satisfied but personally prefer the more traditional ‘roast meat shop’ style of char siu.
Our savoury courses were rounded off with fried rice with shrimps and seafood. It was a very good fried rice, with fresh seafood that tasted great.
We left room for dessert and I opted for the chilled mango cream with pomelo and sago. A classic yum cha dessert and this really hit the spot!
Finally, we were brought some complementary petit fours as a final dish. These included ozmanthus jelly and a sesame/walnut cookie. A nice way to finish the meal.
The service was first rate from start to finish. We were seated without any fuss. Our waiters were attentive and also helpful with the menu. The ‘tea service’ was fantastic – and I literally never saw the bottom of my tea cup!
In terms of price, it was not a cheap affair! In total around $90 AUD per person. The bill is below which has a break down of all the items ordered. Even though the price was a little dear, it is not skyrocketing into the 100s of dollars, and these days one can easily spend $40AUD per person on yumcha in Australia. I would call it good value considering the food was all top quality, the view and interior was great, and the service was memorable!
Overall I had a really good experience at Tin Lung Heen! I would highly recommend it for those (either based in or) travelling to Hong Kong and looking to splurge on a nice lunch! After all, it has a reputation as one of the world’s best yum cha’s for a reason 😛
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