Asian restaurants at Central Market seem to be overflowing from Grote Street into Morphett Street. Walking around the corner of Grote Street, you will come across Nu Thai, a lovely Thai restaurant and located a few shops away is Hong Kee Chinese Restaurant. Hong Kee is a place that we frequent because it serves delicious and affordable Chinese cuisine. Service is also quite efficient, with our food coming to us relatively quickly. In addition to the items on their menu, they also have a variety of special dishes listed on the walls of the restaurant.
One of the dishes that we enjoyed was Salt & Pepper Flounder. It had crispy skin that contrasted wonderfully with the fish's tender meat. The flavour of the meat was enhanced by the salt & pepper mix which had a bit of heat from the small slices of chilli. The dish came with a knife and fork to make the job of serving the fish much easier.
Crispy Hot and Spicy Pork Hock is one of the more unique dishes offered here, featuring a deep fried pork hock with a honey chilli crumble and crushed peanuts topping. The meat was tender enough to easily fall off the bone with the crispy honey chilli crumble heightening its flavour while giving it a potent spicy hit. It was not oily, as similar dishes to this can sometimes be.
One of our favourite dishes at Hong Kee is their Salted Fish, Minced Chicken and Eggplant Hot Pot. The eggplant was soft but still with a bit of bite to it and the salted fish gave the dish its trademark salty taste. It is advised to eat the dish slowly as it comes out piping hot and stays like that for quite a while.
Salted Fish, Minced Chicken and Eggplant Hot Pot
Their Vegetable Bean Curd Hot Pot had soft pieces of tofu that was complemented by a selection of vegetables that had the right amount of bite to them. The sauce that the ingredients were cooked in helped to bring out their flavour without overwhelming them. If you like to give the dish a spicy hit, you can request for chilli slices in soy sauce to dip the ingredients in.
Vegetable Bean Curd Hot Pot
Fillet Steak in Wasabi is similar to the Beef Fillet Japanese Style served at Chanay Restaurant with pieces of beef fillet tossed in a wasabi sauce. The beef fillet was cooked just right with the wasabi sauce giving it a potent pungent aftertaste. We thought it would have been a bit nicer if it had something refreshing to offset the spiciness. If you prefer something a bit milder, there is the option to have a version made with black pepper sauce instead.
The deep-fried pork in their Sweet & Sour Pork was of a generous size with their crisp coating being a good contrast with the tender meat. The sweet and sour sauce did not make the coating too soggy while bringing out the flavour of the pork. It also had an element of sweetness from the chunks of pineapple.
Sweet & Sour Pork
While the bok choy in the Chinese Mushrooms with Chinese Vegetables was quite large, they were soft enough to be easily eaten whole without the aid of a knife and fork. The dish also had slightly chewy Chinese mushrooms that were a good partner to the bok choy. All the ingredients were tied together by the soy sauce based sauce they were cooked in.
Stir-fried Chicken in Prawn Paste was a dish that we were able to get the chef to prepare specifically for us. The chicken was cooked to perfection with the prawn paste sauce heightening its flavour while adding a delicious salty hit. It also had slices of celery to somewhat offset the rich salty taste of the dish.
Stir-fried Chicken in Prawn Paste
To complete your meal, Hong Kee provides you with complimentary orange slices. Ambience of the restaurant was very good and there are parking spaces located along the streets near the restaurant. The prices at Hong Kee are so reasonable that you can enjoy a hearty delicious meal without using any restaurant voucher or discount coupon.
Jonathan,,like you I have enjoyed the food at reasonable prices at the Hong Kee.This as you know is not a flash place...family down to earth oriented...family run restaurant.Bit out of the way from the CBD,but overall,a good spot for just yourself or a group.For me,it reminds me of the type of Chinese Restaurants common in the 1950's.