Flat D, M/F, 63-65 Wong Nai Chung Road
Happy Valley, Hong Kong
(852) 2899 2844
$360 per head, advance bookings required (and if anyone bails, he or she will still have to fork out their share as the chef, Onnie Yip, cooks for the exact numbers booked. You will also need a minimum of 7-8 people).
This is one of the rare few Cantonese private kitchens I know of. There are numerous Sichuan and Shanghainese private kitchens but perhaps the perception is that Cantonese food is too mundane, too familiar to be transformed into a private kitchen experience. Palace Kitchen proves naysayers wrong and I welcome its presence in the private kitchen scene. I had a great meal there.
The food has a home-cooked feel to it but has been taken a notch or two up. Rose buds were added to the salt and pepper prawns, adding a delicate scent and a deeper hint of red to the dish of pink-flushed, black-flecked prawns. The soft, wobbly egg custard dessert had a touch of luxury to it with the addition of birds nest. But its the really simple dishes that shine I feel. The deep fried pomfret was a delight, complete with a crispy crust that you bite through to reveal fluffy white flesh. The contrast was so satisfying. The homely braised soya chicken was also a winner. The tender sweet meat of the chicken balanced by the dark savouriness of the gently spiced soya sauce marinade. Dècor-wise the place is on the plain side but were really there for the food.