The ever-evolving city of Christchurch never ceases to amaze me with its dining options. Just when you think you have found all the dining haunts of this metropolis, something new springs to your attention and peaks your curiosity. The latest eatery to do this is Sister Kong.
Sister Kong, inspired by the Asian city streets of Hong Kong and bringing Taiwanese street food from this region to Christchurch, really packs a punch in the flavour department. Destined for success, being the sister restaurant to Christchurch's favourite dumpling bar, Pot Sticker Dumpling, it's easy to see why. The menu screams fusion of the conventional and unconventional, but what's great, is that it works.
Tucked in a narrow side alley off Victoria Street, a boulevard known for its dining options, customers are first greeted by the fluorescent red lucky cat lighting waving to them. Sister Kong has seating both inside and out, with the inside providing quite a showcase of Asian interior influence. With drop lights under red shades and an open kitchen at the back of the restaurant, your eyes automatically scale the walls to the array of 100 lucky cats waving at you. Work colleagues and I had booked a table at this much-talked about venue and were seated under the lucky cat wall, eager to start ordering up a storm.
The menu boasts a variety from signature baos to dumplings, starters, greens and dessert. Curiosity did get the better of some of the team who were drawn to the SKB Fried Chicken - Bostocks organic fried chicken w/ vinegar chilli dipping sauce and Truffle Loaded Fries - Fries loaded w/ shiitake mushrooms, kewpie mayo, truffle oil, toasted peanuts, spicy nori and 16 spices and herb.
Fried Chicken @ Sister Kong (Photo Instagram @neelsmcgee)
These came out quite quickly and were equally consumed at a fast pace. The fried chicken was flavoursome with an interesting tang provided by the vinegar dipping sauce. It would have been good to have this sauce in a side dish to then drizzle over the chicken, instead of it sitting in the bottom of the dish. That said, the chicken dish did get the table warmed up and ready to continue the street food journey.
The truffle loaded fries were a major hit. Who would have ever thought to put shitake mushrooms on french fries? Pure genius. These were a favourite with the table and a great starter to accompany the fried chicken.
Open Pork Wonton @ Sister Kong (photo by Praneel Lal)
Next to be delivered to the table was the Open Pork Wonton - Sticky pulled pork wonton w/ kimchi coleslaw on deep fried wonton pastry. These were definitely more bang for your buck. Loaded with a delicious kimchi coleslaw and a moist helping of shredded pork on each wonton, the combination of the salty pork and the sweet and spicy coleslaw worked a charm for the palate.
Beef Brisket Bao @ Sister Kong (photo by Praneel Lal)
The bao of choice was the Five spice beef brisket bao - Slow cooked beef brisket w/ Chinese cabbage, kimchi wonbok, coriander and kimchi mayo. Usually, I would go for a pork belly bao, but the beef was a definite win. Perfectly cooked and melt in your mouth, though keeping its structure, was a surprise for me. Usually, there is a worry that brisket can become quite tough and dry, but this was certainly not the case with Sister Kong's bao.
Last, but certainly not least, for those with a sweet tooth, there is a dessert bao. This eye-tease was ordered by some colleagues and proved to be a scrumptious finale to what one could call a banquet. The Ice Cream Bao - Deep fried bao w/ peanut sugar coated ice cream, lemon condensed milk, came out in perfect form. The peanut flavour managed to push through the lemon condensed milk and give the dessert that mouth-watering edge.
I would definitely recommend checking out Sister Kong with an empty stomach so you can enjoy all that it has to offer. Following Sister Kong on social media, also allows you to keep up to date with any seasonal adaptions to their menu and any additional new items. A great venue for work lunches or a quick bite, Sister Kong does not disappoint.