Too hot to do barbecue in a countryside setting? Oolong BBQ, a new restaurant in Mong Kok, lets diners gather around gas stoves while roasting skewers, but in an air-conditioned, comfortable environment.
Oolong BBQ has an open-plan layout, and an adjustable ventilator at each table hangs from the ceiling to take the cooking fumes away.
They offer the usual barbecue fare, including chicken wings, pork, beef and vegetables. Fresh seafood, such as shrimp and conch, is purchased from a Mong Kok wet market every day.
They also have dishes where diverse ingredients such as mushrooms, beef bone marrow and oysters are put into a clay pot and placed on the stove for roasting.
We liked the ginger, green onion and oyster clay pot (HK$48). The succulent oysters were fresh, and went well with the garlic.
For those who want more filling dishes, there are three bamboo rice offerings. The rice is stuffed into bamboo, and comes with a timer telling diners when the roasting time of about 10 minutes is up.
We liked the black and white glutinous bamboo rice with purple sweet potato (HK$43). Slathered with coconut milk after roasting, the rice was chewy and flavourful. But the dried shrimp, pickled radish and pork floss bamboo rice (HK$46) was too salty.
From a list of snacks, we chose the roasted dried puffer fish (HK$45). The thin slices of puffer fish were savoury and enjoyable, but needed to be eaten immediately, or they turned very hard.
The restaurant serves seasoning powders (seaweed, kimchi and mushroom), honey, and different sauces, so customers can customise the dishes to their tastes.
The restaurant is small, with only five tables. Each table gets only one stove – and if you have a group of about six, it’s going to take a long time to cook enough food for everyone. But it’s a slow, relaxing way to spend an evening while cooking for yourself.
Oolong BBQ, Ngai Hing Mansion, 24 Pak Po Street, Mong Kok, tel: 2336 7370. Open: 6pm-3am (Friday and Saturday until 4am)