Friday, December 20, 2013

The Awakening Cafe in Sai Ying Pun

We went to brunch with some new friends recently, at The Awakening Cafe in Sai Ying Pun.  It is located on Ying Wa Terrace just above High Street, off of Centre Street.
 They serve American food, such as Cincinnati chili, burgers, buffalo wings, omelets and traditional breakfast / brunch fare, in a casual space.  I quite like the chill atmosphere here, although they could really work on their service.  We were only a party of four people and they put my menu on a separate ticket, so that my dish came out about 10 minutes before anyone else's.  By the time I ate, everything was congealed and cold.  Frustrating.
When we went, they had some Christmas decorations up.  They have a bar and serve a few American craft beers that are hard to locate in Hong Kong, like Anchor Steam Beer and Longboard Lager.
I ordered the American Breakfast, which consisted of two eggs over easy, two strips of bacon, a pile of potatoes, and two slices of wheat bread. 
The good:
The eggs.  The eggs over easy were done very well - the first time I have actually had eggs over easy properly in Hong Kong.  They tend to over-fry the eggs here.  We have ordered eggs over easy that turned out to be completely cooked through, to the point where the yolks are practically calcifying. 
The bacon.  It was cooked the way I like it - not too crisy but not too soggy.
The bad:
The potatoes.  They were still hard in the middle and very oily.  This is what happens when you do not have good ole' Boise potatoes and you do not cook them for long enough.  I think the restaurant would do better if they roasted their potatoes for a little bit, rather than just frying them.
The wheat bread.  Is this wheat bread, truly?  It tasted like soft, white bread masquerading as wheat bread with a few slivers of grain.  It is clear that Hong Kong is not textured-bread friendly, preferring the consistency and texture of fluffy Texas toast or Wonder Bread.
For some reason blogger really doesn't want to publish this right side up
 We also ordered a plate of caramelized banana fritters for the table to share - I wasn't thrilled about these. 
The very bad: How is it caramelized if you just slice raw banana on top?  Clearly the cafe thought "caramelized" meant just dunking caramel sauce on the dish.  Someone needs to explain to them that caramelized is a slow cooking (thicker) pieces of banana until gooey, warm and browned.  Fail!

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