Review: Maxim’s Jade Garden (Hong Kong International Airport)

Shop 8T010
Level 8, Terminal 1
Hong Kong International Airport
+852 2186 6068

Our final meal in Hong Kong was at the airport. What the, the airports? Don’t they suck when it comes to food offerings? To be honest, HKG actually has some decent eateries (we definitely weren’t in Coolangatta anymore!) so when my aunty suggested we have yum cha at Jade Garden in HKG, I was totes down for it.

Jade Garden is a Cantonese restaurant that belongs to the Maxim Group’s chain of restaurants. There are actually several Jade Garden restaurants all over Hong Kong but, as predicted, we didn’t get around to trying any of them. Until now.

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Hong Kong International Airport epitomises efficiency and sterility neatly in two terminals so it was strange having a proper yum cha meal there. Jade Garden is perched on level 8 of T1 which meant that we got mad views of the check-in counters and passengers entering the airport.

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A far cry from the plastic knives and forks you see at Australian airports…

I also loved that we each got our own little teapot filled with Chinese tea.

The format here is just like most yum cha restaurants in Hong Kong – there is no trolley service, you’re pretty much given a paper menu and you write down how many of each item you want before handing your order to the waitress.

Braised chicken feet in abalone sauce (HKD$48/AUD$7.27)
Braised chicken feet in abalone sauce (HKD$48/AUD$7.27)

I don’t normally eat chicken feet but I decided to give this one a go just to see how it fared to the Melbourne equivalents. Unfortunately, I found it a bit too bland and even my chicken feet-loving father agreed with me.

Deep fried wontons stuffed with shrimp (HKD$24/AUD$3.53)
Deep fried wontons stuffed with shrimp (HKD$24/AUD$3.53)

This was very much a ‘Ken order’ (i.e. my brother who doesn’t like Chinese food expect for wontons, spring rolls, beef-anything and har gow); it was okay.

Steamed rice flour rolls (HKD$38/AUD$5.76)
Steamed rice flour rolls (HKD$38/AUD$5.76)

The cheung fun dish was another one in the ‘okay’ pile; nothing terrible but also nothing fantastic.

Pan-fried buns stuffed with minced pork and pepper (four pieces for HKD$36/AUD$5.45)
Pan-fried buns stuffed with minced pork and pepper (four pieces for HKD$36/AUD$5.45)

I ordered these thinking that they were shengjianbao, only to find that they weren’t. That’d teach me not to know the Chinese characters for ‘shengjian’ and for ordering what I thought were Shanghainese breakfast staples in Hong Kong. These were alright too but I would have loved the outsides to be a bit more crunchy and more importantly, more filling inside.

Signature steamed lobster dumpling (HKD$68/AUD$10.30)
Signature steamed lobster dumpling (HKD$68/AUD$10.30)

One of Jade Garden’s signature dishes is their lobster dumpling which doesn’t come cheap. It is pretty much a giant steamed dumpling stuffed with lobster.

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On paper, it sounded good. In reality, it tasted pretty ordinary for just over AUD$10.

Steamed vegetarian dumplings (HKD$30/AUD$4.54)
Steamed vegetarian dumplings (HKD$30/AUD$4.54)
Steamed pork and shrimp dumplings (HKD$36/AUD$5.45)
Steamed pork and shrimp dumplings (HKD$36/AUD$5.45)
Har gow (HKD$40/AUD$6.06), BBQ pork buns (HKD$30/AUD$4.54)
Har gow (HKD$40/AUD$6.06), BBQ pork buns (HKD$30/AUD$4.54)

And there were more dumplings. They were thankfully better than the first couple of dishes we tried but they definitely weren’t the best. Hell, I’ve had better har gow in Melbourne and paid a lot less for them!

Steamed beef short ribs with black pepper and BBQ sauce (HKD$36/AUD$5.45)
Steamed beef short ribs with black pepper and BBQ sauce (HKD$36/AUD$5.45)

None of us ordered the ribs but we ended up eating them anyway – and we were glad for them because they were probably the best dish we had. The meat was so tender and the sauce was lip-smackingly addictive. I can’t even remember if we got charged for them but whatevs.

Tofu pudding served with syrup and brown sugar (HKD$68 per pot/AUD$10.30)
Tofu pudding served with syrup and brown sugar (HKD$68 per pot/AUD$10.30)

The dessert was also pretty good. We loved the little tub our tofu pudding was served in and there was enough for everyone to have a bit of a nibble. The syrup was, thankfully, not overbearingly sweet while the tofu was silky and smooth.

Even though our meal finished on a slight high, it didn’t make up for the fact that most of the previous dishes were just okay. And it wasn’t cheap either! I’m not sure if all Maxim restaurants are like this or whether the fact that the airport location made this particular restaurant so sterile and bleh. Either way, give me Tim Ho Wan and Lin Heung any time.

And so this wraps up my Hong Kong series. Hong Kong, you were amazing. I can’t wait to do you all over again in seven month’s time.

I eat too much.

1 Comment

  1. The Squishy Monster
    March 3, 2014

    Wow, what a spread…some of the restaurants in my city aren’t even this nice!

    Reply

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