Thursday, December 19, 2013

He Jiang at The Cosmopolitan Hotel

I went to dinner at He Jiang (合江) with a very good friend on Saturday night.  It is a Chinese restaurant fusing the cuisines of Chengdu (a city in Sichuan) and Yangzhou (in Jiangsu), each with quite distinct styles of cooking.  The name of the restaurant means "the confluence of rivers".  It is located on the first floor of the Cosmopolitan Hotel on Queen's Road East, which is directly across from the Hong Kong Jockey Club race track.

I quite liked the little pig figurines at the entrance of the restaurant.
We ordered a few dishes to sample:

 Sesame bing (like a Chinese hot pocket!) with marinated spicy stringbeans and minced pork, which was flavorful except that I thought the bing was way too thin (it needed a little more chewy, pillowy filling).  The filling was well executed and very flavorful.
Chengdu wok fried sliced pork with fresh chilis and red peppers (成都小炒肉), which I thought was just okay.  I did like the fresh green whole chilis - they had a small kick and were seared to an almost blistered-but-not-quite-charred meltingly tender state.
Sliced pork in Sichuan sauce and a tofu, salted pork and tomato clay pot.  Both were rather uneventful and not particularly unique or interesting.  I would pass on these.
We finished the meal with a pan fried Eight Treasure dessert.  Eight Treasure (八宝饭) is a very popular and traditional sticky rice dessert with dates and red bean paste filling, usually in a dome shape.  He Jiang, however, had its own unique twist - they fried it so that it was more like a pancake.  The effect of the frying was to make the sticky rice even stickier, with a very nicy chewy, crispy texture.  The dessert was served piping hot and sweet.  I really enjoyed this dish.
Perhaps we ordered poorly, but everything came slightly different than how we pictured it, and the portions were small.  I would say that the food alone is not worth the trek. 
I think I would only come back to try their Chengdu Hot Pot, which is yuan yang soup base with a Sichuan spicy soup base on one side and a most intriguing fresh water herring and wolfberry soup base on the other.  I can be much more forgiving with hotpot...

No comments:

Post a Comment