Musings of a bon vivant in Hong Kong


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A Comforting Lunch at Comfort

Most of my friends work in Central, so if ever I want to meet up for lunch, we either have to wing it (meetings/deadlines/projects/a*sehole bosses depending) or engage in complicated Whatsapping messaging to work out if they can risk  committing to a time and booking something in advance to avoid rush hour crush and disappointment. My friends are just as food obsessed as I am and are always asking, ” Is there anywhere new you want to try?” I like to think they are being nice as they say they are ‘helping me out’ as a food blogger. Hmmm. (Joking, love you guys :P)

One lunchtime excursion, my friend R and I decided to go to Comfort by Harlan Goldstein. This had been on my list of places to try for a while but the Food Gods have been sending me elsewhere for the last few months. So when R said the magic words, “You HAVE to try the Mac’n’cheese”,  Food Gods’ itinerary be damned, I had to hotfoot it down there toute suite.

Comfort

Comfort

Harlan Goldstein’s other establishment Gold and now newly opened Sushi To, will appeal to those looking for a classier, finer dining experience, but Comfort offers meals for us mere mortals- more affordable and simpler, like the Armani Exchange to Armani.

Cool lights

Cool lights

At first glance at the menu, I liked what I saw. Dishes are split into various categories such as Something Small, Something Green, Something Raw, Pizza and Pita and Comfort Dishes. Being only two of us, and with an hour window, we didn’t want to be too greedy nor did we want to send R into a food coma at her desk.Comfort

Obviously we only had one goal. Mac & Cheese. I naturally assumed, being a staple, comfort dish, that it would be on the normal a la carte. But, it seems that I assumed wrong. The waitress had to whip out the Daily Specials menu where “Kick Ass Mac & Cheese Is Back” was emblazoned in the middle. Well, this is just silly, I thought. Why on earth have something so KICK ASS as a Daily Special. Just put it on the main menu so we can gorge on it everyday!

Kick Ass Mac and Cheese

Kick Ass Mac and Cheese

And it was damn good. Gooey, cheesy, rich, with a beautiful breadcrumb crusting on top and a smack of black truffle aroma in the face. This dish is death for the lactose-intolerant. Thank goodness I got over my dairy allergy years ago. Whoop. I loved the surprise nuggets of Argentina pork sausage buried in the cheese, which gave it even more savoury deliciousness. This was definitely one of the best Mac and Cheese dishes I have had in Hong Kong.

Gooey deliciousness

Gooey deliciousness

Aside from the Mac & Cheese, we decided to order the Field Greens with Mango, Pear and Tomatoes which was light and refreshing and the Black Truffle, Taleggio and Sausage Pizza for more truffle, more cheese and more sausage. This was the dinkiest, cutest, little pizza I had ever seen and the ingredients so prettily scattered atop the dough. The pizza itself was quite excellent. The sausage was flavourful and the dough soft and pillowy to bite into.

Black truffle, Taleggio and Sausage Pizza

Black truffle, Taleggio and Sausage Pizza

Field Greens with Mango, Pear and Tomato

Field Greens with Mango, Pear and Tomato

To end a rather carb-heavy meal, we thought, why not send ourselves over the edge and order the Old School Apple Crumble with Vanilla ice-cream. This really hit the spot and we both appreciated how they had achieved a good pie to crumble ratio. The apple wasn’t too tart and the crumble did not go soggy as it does all too quickly in some versions. I smothered each mouthful with vanilla sauce and ice-cream and was left truly satisfied.

Old School Apple Crumble

Old School Apple Crumble

The service is smooth and friendly, the atmosphere fun and I feel that Harlan has done a great job introducing a cheaper option without compromising on the quality of the food. Comfort 100% comforted my stomach that day.

Chopstixfix rating: 4/5

 

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Harlan Goldstein’s Comfort,  5/F Grand Progress Building, 15-16 Lan Kwai Fong, Central, Hong Kong Tel: 852 2521-8638 Email: dine@comfort-dining.hk

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That’s one big pizza slice…

How do actors in American films make eating pizza look SO mouthwatering?! Every single time I see someone stuffing one of those American style slices into their mouth, I salivate like a dog looking at bone. Darn those acting skills!

Having been in HK for little over a year, I was pretty crestfallen to notice no decent pizzerias. I mean, Pizza Express and the other Italian eateries are fine, but eating pizza should be a messy, sloppy, with melted gooey cheese going all over the place affair not a “sit at a table primly cutting up your pizza elegantly” undertaking. So you can imagine my excitement when I found out from my friend D that an American/ NY style pizzeria had opened on Lyndhurst Terrace in Central. Apparently, there has been a branch in Sai Kung for a while, but let’s face it, no one is going to trot all the way up there just for 1 slice. (Or you might, if you were really having withdrawal symptoms….or just desperate).I’m NOT that desperate, but I was looking forward to getting my chops on a “slice”. And what a slice it was. At Paisano’s you can order a whole pizza, either 14″, 16″ or a whopping 24″ to share or you can ask for a giant pizza slice. A slice that’s bigger than your face and then some.

We quickly bagsied ourselves seats in their functional dining area downstairs and after recovering from my initial shock at seeing the sheer enormity of the slices, I ordered myself one of the “Paisano’s pizza”- sausage, pepperoni, mushroom, black olives, onions and homemade pizza sauce. The slice could’ve done with being in the oven for a bit longer, but being the voracious eater that I am, I merrily shoved it in my mouth, not caring about the cheese going all over my face and hands. Yes, I am a slob. D meanwhile was eagerly sprinkling extra parmesan cheese on top of her pepperoni slice and then wolfed hers down with glee.Our thoughts? Satisfying, filling and decent enough. It’s not about the size or the quality, so much as the fact that there IS a quick stop pizzeria where you can get a slice, without having to order a whole pizza on your own. Sometimes a Mcdonald’s or a kebab just doesn’t cut it when you want fast food and Paisano’s more than fills that void. A thumbs up for the pizza of epic proportions 🙂

Next time: their sub sandwiches, lasagna and their calzone!! (Not all in one sitting of course! Doh.)

Chopstixfix rating: 3.5/5

Paisano’s Central, 9 Lyndhurst Terrace, Central. Tel: 2544 4445 Open till 11pm weekdays and 1am weekends/ Paisano’s Sai Kung, G/F, Shop 27, Chan Man Street. Tel: 2791 4445

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