Lok Cha Tea house- traditional tea in Hong Kong park

I have often walked past this well-known veggie dim sum ‘house’ when taking a stroll through the serene and peaceful Hong Kong Park. The atmosphere is certainly inviting. The house is located in one of the Park’s galleries and has the traditional oval shaped entrance and Chinese décor that you would expect from a place that is famous for its authentic tea selection.

We were seated in what the waitress described as a room, but we shared it with two other tables. Moreover, we were given a small table considering we were 8 of us. We could barely fit all the dishes when they came.

The menu is seasonal and changes on a daily basis, so whatever I list on here will not be what you will see when you visit (if in fact you do). The menu has the daily specials and chef’s recommendations in Cantonese and English.

We ordered the cucumber with vinegar, vegetable shoots with wasabi, bean curd skin roll, BBQ sauce cake, veggie spring roll, veggie dumplings, sweet mantou (plain bread), fried noodles and banana leaf rice.

 

Instead of analysing each and every dish, I can tell you now which were satisfactory. The sweet mantou dipped in condensed milk, the spring roll and the BBQ sauce cake.

Very disappointingly, the rest of the dishes were extremely bland! I understand dim sum is not the most flavourful of foods, but this was almost boring. This is not at all due to the missing meat. I have visited a few veggie dim sum restaurants that offered far more tasty food. Restaurants like this make carnivores think that veggie food is tasteless!

Lok Cha boasts it’s very high quality teas, picked by Mr. Ip himself who is a ‘renowned expert in the fields of tea and Yixing teapot with more than 30 years of experience’, moreover, they hold tea tasting events in the house.

I ordered the white tea, served in the traditional Yinxing pot, which is more like a cup. The water is refilled only when you need to drink to make sure the tea is not bitter. White tea typically has a very light taste and should not steep for more than 5 minutes. I may not be an expert on tea (although, I drink various types throughout the day), but I must say I was not overly impressed with this particular brew. I have had much better! Maybe I should have gone for the Jasmine…

Verdict: For a veggie dim sum lunch, we paid 190 HKD each. The restaurant was completely full, so I am wondering whether it’s because people feel that there are limited veggie dim sum options in Hong Kong (not true!) or that they come because its located in Hong Kong Park or god forbid they think the food is tasty… Either way, I wouldn’t come back nor would I bring any visitors here.

Nisha

Upper Ground Floor, 290A, Queen’s Road Central, Sheung Wan, Hong Kong Ph: 852 2805-1360  http://www.lockcha.com/home/?lang=eng

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