CONTEMPORARY KOREAN CUISINE AT U-HANG ON HIGH STREET!
Since I’ve moved flats to a little studio on the cusp of Sheung Wan and Sai Ying Pun, I’ve started to discover some real gems when it comes to dining. Apart from amazing local digs that serve up my favourite comfort food (dim sum, wonton, ho fan, char siu… the list goes on), I’ve started to frequent the increasingly popular neighbourhood of Sai Ying Pun. With a smattering of new bars and restaurants set between the tofu and flower shops, it’s quick becoming the cooler alternative to Soho for evening drinks and dinner.
U-Hang only adds to the hip and happening ‘hood with it’s cool decor. Think exposed concrete walls, funky geometric light fittings, an awesome open bar and clean modern furniture. The name ‘U-Hang’ actually means ‘trend’, so it certainly fits in with the trendy vibe of High Street. I’ve been to U-Hang now a couple of times now and I love sitting inside and enjoying the buzzing atmosphere as well as sitting outside for brunch and a spot of people watching…
U-Hang has an interesting cocktail menu that’s split into two specific sections, Yuzu and Honey Ginger. I personally love both these flavours and you can choose from a variety of yuzu or ginger based drinks, all of which will complement the Korean cuisine to come.
We went for the Yuzu-ritta and the Yuzu Sour to start. Whilst both were strong, they had a fantastic, well-balanced sweet and sour flavour that was refreshing and light whilst still flavourful. We also had to try a couple of selections from the Ginger half of the cocktail menu, and my favourite had to be the Gin-ger Classic… I do love a good G&T and this was my perfect summer drink. I’ll definitely be back for this on a balmy evening!
Of course U-Hang also has a selection of mocktails and non-alcoholic beverages, wines, beers, whiskey bourbon and Korean liquors to quench your thirst (yes, they have Soju – no, I didn’t try it, because the last time I did I ended up singing karaoke until 4am).
The menu at U-Hang is refreshingly concise, which makes ordering a lot easier. Expect a small but well thought out selection of contemporary Korean dishes that are split up into “Small Bites”, “Bigger Bites”, “Salad”, “And…” (sides) and “Desserts”. Apart from the actual food, I really liked the “What U Say” Korean phrases at the top of the menu, which were a cute addition and really got us in the mood for Korean fare. I was wondering whether I’d be shouting “Jjang Mashi ssuh yo!” by the time we’d finished!
Trusting the waiter and the Chef to choose, we were treated to a selection of dishes that showed off the best that U-Hang had to offer. The first thing we were presented with were the traditional Korean sides, ‘Panchan’, on a cool wooden serving board. I loved the bean sprouts and delicately spiced morning glory, which had the perfect amount of chilli and flavouring to complement the food.
The first “Small Bite” that we tried (though were actually well portioned!) was the Bulgogi Beef Tacos ($98), which my dining partner actually pronounced were “some of the best tacos he’d ever had”. The beef was literally mouthwatering, packed with flavour and it melted in our mouths. The combination of beef with the tomato salsa, spring onions, herbs and sauce on the soft tacos was sweet, spicy and truly delicious. A must-try.
Of course we had to try the Korean Style Fried Chicken ($98), one of Korea’s most well-loved dishes. The presentation was stunning and definitely not your run-of-the-mill KFC… especially with the indulgent addition of foie gras! This posh fried chicken had a crunchy exterior that held tender chicken inside, and was flavoured with a tasty sweet sauce that had a hint of heat. Whilst I enjoyed the chicken and its sticky, crispy coating, I found the addition of the foie gras a bit unnecessary and overwhelmingly rich.
On to the “Bigger Bites” and we were presented with a hefty U-Hang Burger ($158). Balancing between two soft burger buns was a juicy, pan-seared house-made pork patty that was wonderfully meaty and packed with flavour. The subtle, spicy kimchi mayo melted into the cheese and meat, creating a satisfyingly decadent combination. This is the perfect meal if you’re looking to kick those burger-cravings… just don’t go crazy on the coleslaw as it was a tad watery.
Going off menu, we were lucky to try some of the Chef’s upcoming creations. This Potato Salad definitely had a modern twist with the perfectly slow poached egg that oozed yolk all over the al dente potatoes. The thin slices of apple and radish gave a crisp contrast in textures against the creamy mayo and the addition of the salty yet sticky anchovies that seemed almost caramelised added yet another texture and strong flavour to a usually plain salad. This is one to try if you’re looking for something a bit different and unusual.
While I was positively stuffed by this point, my dining companion was keen to try the Messy Sliders ($98), which kept being recommended by our server. These mini burgers were arguably even better than the big burger! The pulled pork shoulder meat was divine – so tender and almost sweet and smoky. These little bites are an ideal and filling snack with your round of drinks.
As if that wasn’t enough, we were also presented with the Korean Porchetta ($178). We didn’t managed to eat much of this and ended up having to take it away, but the tiny bites we manage didn’t disappoint. The slow oven roasted rolled Berkshire pork belly was again, perfectly cooked, and the chive salad had an amazing chilli kick. The portion size was definitely on the larger size, so this is one to share with a couple of people.
If you’re looking for a hip new hangout where you can relax over delicious, creative food and refreshing cocktails, then U-Hang should definitely be top of your list. Sai Ying Pun is definitely the place to be these days and U-Hang is a great option if you’re after delicious, Korean fare that’s been given a modern ‘makeover’. I would definitely go back for those beef tacos and sliders with a Gin-ger Classic cocktail, and it’s also worth stopping by to try out the brunch which includes delectable dishes such as Kimchi Pork Eggs Benedict and Korean Pancakes. The prices are very reasonable for the high quality of the food and the service was attentive. I’ll definitely be back soon, and I hope to see you there!
U-Hang, Shop 6 & 6A, 58-60 High Street, Sai Ying Pun, Hong Kong, uhang.hk