The Event: Impress the Parents [Magazine Feature]

The Event: Impress the Parents [Magazine Feature]

Traditional Chinese at Lung King Heen is a sure fire way to impress parents visiting Hong Kong

YalunTu  YalunTu  on 4 Jan '16

Here’s the deal with families: they’ll decide whether you’re right for their daughter/son within the first 90 seconds. If you get a check, you gotta stay on your game to keep that check. If it’s a strike, then get a shovel because you’ll be digging yourself out of that hole for, potentially, a lifetime. Dinners with parents should be planned with the utmost care. A slightly blasé date night or even an anniversary can be overcome with thoughtful gestures afterwards but a botched in-law dinner will relegate you to Sunday family brunches amongst aunties or Christmas stories when Uncle Tony gets too drunk. Be that guy – I mean the planner, not drunk Uncle T.

So I’m choosing Lung King Heen as my top culinary choice for first parental dinners and lunches. It has the following qualities:

  • Excellent food
  • Good service

I chose a lunch for the review because it’s not wallet busting and it provides a good backdrop for a first lunch with the family. Dinners are too binary and can really head south, especially if you find out they don’t drink. But lunches are a light breezy affair. Let’s get to the meal:

Fish at Lung King Heen

Sea bass

BBQ Combination at the Four Seasons's Lung King Heen

BBQ selection

Dim Sum at Four Seaon's Lung King Heen

Dim sum

Chef Dim Sum Selection

LKH, famous for their dim sum, is the only three-Michelin star Chinese restaurant in Hong Kong and located in the Four Seasons. Each morsel is elegantly nestled in small steamer baskets. I’m a huge fan of all things dumplings. The consistency of the skin is just right and as opposed to many similarly nice dim sum spots, you’re not struck by an oily feeling. It’s light and fresh.

Soup of the Day

Palate cleanser. So easy to drink I forgot to take a picture. Also it changes regularly so like, do you want a picture when whatever you order will be different? No. You don’t.

BBQ Combination

This is THE BOMB, which I think is actually the technical term. LKH does its pork as good as as Yung Kee does its goose. The char siu is served in a sweet sauce and could be carved with a spoon and I’ve come back solo just to order this dish. The crispy pork is savoury with a brilliant crackling. A cracking dish. Order two.

Braised Sea Bass

Going from pork to sea bass honestly felt a bit weird for me and I wish I had partaken in a vegetable first. But hey, you can use that as a convo piece with the parents, who at this point should be impressed by your choice of venue, casual elegance, and that story you’ve rehearsed that shows you’re both fun and responsible (my go-to is getting lost after a board meeting in Tokyo. Board meeting = successful / Tokyo = exotic, getting lost = bumbling / humble / charming. Are you taking notes?) 

Fried Rice with Shrimp, BBQ Pork and Preserved Vegetable 

A wonderful final dish before the desserts. The rice is chock-full of flavours and served in a bamboo leaf. I’d add a dollop of XO sauce to it, (as their sauce is awesome) rub your stomach, and appreciate that mixing shrimp, pork and veggies requires an expert balance. That’s what you’re getting here – food that is traditional Canto but balanced, light, and very, very good. Afterwards we had dessert, which was very nice though honestly I was pleasantly full already from the savouries. And that’s what I’d recommend you to do. Some families prefer a formal European dinner, others a cool private kitchen, and others are insane and think food is for nourishment rather than enjoyment. But let’s start out conservatively and only show our true and weird colours after you’ve treated them to a fine, elegant lunch.

Good luck.

Image title

Lung King Heen

Website or Tel: 3196-8888

Hours: Lunch Monday - Saturday 12:00 pm - 2:30 pm, Sundays and Public Holidays 11:30 am - 3:00 pm. Dinner Monday - Sunday 6:00 pm - 10:30 pm.



Writer based in HK. Eats everything but celery.

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