REACH­ING NEW HEIGHTS

Crave talks to chef Le­ung Yu-king of Sum­mer Palace about his new role and his plans for the restau­rant.

Crave - - CONTENT -

Chef Le­ung Yu-king has re­cently been pro­moted to ex­ec­u­tive Chi­nese chef at Is­land Shangri-la, Hong Kong’s Miche­lin-starred Chi­nese restau­rant Sum­mer Palace. The sea­soned chef started his culi­nary ca­reer when he was 18, and has gar­nered over 30 years of ex­pe­ri­ence at no­table kitchens in­clud­ing Fook Lam Moon, T’ang Court, and, since 1991 as part of the open­ing team, Sum­mer Palace.

Crave (C): What was it like be­ing part of Sum­mer Palace’s open­ing team?

Chef Le­ung (L): Be­ing part of the open­ing team gave me the op­por­tu­nity to be men­tored by two of the great­est Chi­nese chefs, chefs Lee Ke­ung and Ip Chi-che­ung, who have both taught me so much be­fore I fi­nally took up the role of Chi­nese ex­ec­u­tive chef. It’s also in­cred­i­ble to wit­ness how the restau­rant has grown over the years from be­ing a ho­tel restau­rant to be­ing widely recog­nised in the lo­cal din­ing scene. At the same time, it gives me mixed emo­tions when col­leagues I have worked with for so long are one by one slowly re­tir­ing, and it’s our turn to pass down the knowl­edge to a new gen­er­a­tion of fu­ture chefs.

C: What’s your most mem­o­rable mo­ment at Sum­mer Palace?

L: One of the most mem­o­rable mo­ments I had at Sum­mer Palace is def­i­nitely when the restau­rant re­ceived one Miche­lin star af­ter I had just taken on the role of Chi­nese ex­ec­u­tive chef, be­cause I had a huge shoe to fill af­ter chef Ip’s re­tire­ment, and I was still nav­i­gat­ing my way through lead­ing the en­tire kitchen brigade, so I was glad to have been recog­nised.

C: What are some of your sig­na­ture dishes? What are some new dishes you’ve added to the menu?

L: There’s a tast­ing menu at the restau­rant with my new dishes, but the two sig­na­ture dishes would be the stir-fried lob­ster with crispy pre­served veg­etable, fried goji berry, crispy rice, spring onion and shal­lots; and stewed pork brisket with fresh yam in Hangzhou style. I in­vented the lob­ster dish my­self, as I sel­dom see lob­ster be­ing cooked this way, and I want to put em­pha­sis on the tex­ture. Want to try chef Le­ung’s dishes for your­self? Make a book­ing at 2820 8552.

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