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Archive for the ‘Dessert’ Category

I’ve been meaning to write about Yoppi for a while now, ever since W and I discovered it nearly two months ago. Since then, I’d guess I’ve visited four or five times, often with friends in tow. Yes, it is a chain (based in the US, I believe), but it’s new to HK and it’s won our hearts. Why do we love it so much? It’s the only place (so far) I’ve found in HK that actually has self-serve fro yo!

LOVE the DIY aspect. It remind me of buffets and ice cream machines from years past 🙂

They have six flavors on rotation, anchored by the Yoppi signature tart. It’s pay-by-weight, so you’re free to mix and match as much as you want. AND you can control the portion size – whoohoo! (Can you tell I’m a bit excited about this place?) The signature tart is awesome, so smooth, tart, and a bit sweet. It definitely does not use Splenda, like the yogurt at a particular chain which will remain unnamed…

After the yogurt, you can fill up with a slew of toppings. They’ve got everything from fruits (blueberries, lychee, strawberries, mango, etc.) to sweets (gummi bears, oreo crumbs, M&Ms…) to syrups to mochi…the list goes on.

Myriad mix-ins

Besides the self-serve aspect and more mix-ins than a Girl Talk album, the staff is really nice, and they always blast top 40 music. Who doesn’t want to sing to Katy Perry as they inhale fro yo? Another bonus: I think they’re open until midnight. Late-night cravings = solved.

Yoppi
12 Stanley Street (and another one in Mongkok on Dundas Street)
2147 5711
Cost: ~ $4.50/oz (I think? I usually end up with half a giant cup around $35-$40)

*Thanks to FB for the photos 🙂

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Does everyone already know about Yo Go in Causeway Bay? Very well, then, perhaps they do. But for what it’s worth, I also wanted to rave about this new, exceptionally-wallet-friendly fro yo newbie. The quick-and-dirty verdict? It’s great.

W, G, and I visited on a weekend afternoon. The place was decently crowded, and one of the (few) drawbacks was apparent: lack of seating. Anyways, once we arrived, the friendly sales clerk gave us the lowdown: First, pick a frozen yogurt (or mix and match). Yo Go seems to have at least three or four permanent flavors, including original and strawberry, and one featured flavor on rotation. That weekend, the special was lychee.

Toppings galore at Yo Go

The second part is the most fun: toppings. The store is dominated by a long counter with scores of tempting toppings, from assorted fruits (like kiwi and pineapple) to sweets (chocolate chips, oreos, etc). Since everything is charged by the gram, you don’t have to restrict yourself to one or two toppings. It’s your chance to go crazy! I personally got one serving of original and one of lychee yogurt, along with mango and white chocolate chips on top. The yogurt here was awesome – at least as tasty as Berrygood’s. In fact, I’d venture to say Yo Go is better, because there are more options to choose from on a daily basis. The original is a nice balance of sweet and tart, and it’s not too watery, the main sin of some other places I’ve tried. I think what really makes Yo Go a winner for me, though, are the toppings. The option to have unlimited toppings is a dream come true for indecisive types. And the best part is, since you’re charged by weight (have I mentioned this before?), it’s definitely the best value-for-money in town.

Now if only they could squeeze in a few more chairs…

Yo Go
106-126 Leighton Road
2895 1116
Cost: $15 HKD/100 grams

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In Hong Kong, coffee chains like Starbucks and Pacific Coffee are an espresso a dozen. So when P and I were thinking of a local cafe to visit last weekend, we were kind of stuck. That is, until I remembered that one of my friends used to work at a delightful place called Cafe Zambra, located in Wan Chai. I read on openrice that their baristas made some of the best latte art in town, so after a short consult with P, we were on our way.

You're the cutest harbinger of death I've ever seen!

Zambra is in (what I consider) the tucked-away part of Wan Chai. That is, it’s not crammed between two girlie bars selling more than just beer; it’s not particularly close to the Star Ferry Pier, and it’s not close to Southorn Playground and the Tai Yuen street market. It’s on Jaffe, in between Wan Chai and Causeway Bay, and walking there you pass several quiet(er) streets until you happen upon the two-storied glass building that houses Zambra. Immediately, the open space put me at ease; there’s something about light and room to breathe that always makes me feel good. The interior is larger than it seems, as a small staircase towards the back leads to an upstairs seating area. And of course, like any good coffee shop, they’ve got free wi-fi.

The coffee itself is quite good (they’re known for their specialty beans, collected from all over the world), and it’s even better decked out with latte art. When the waitress brought our drinks up, P had an awesome skull design that defied our previous understandings of latte foam. Zambra also has a tempting selection of light snacks (sandwiches, salads, and couscous!) and desserts. The standout is the banofee pie, which I did not have on this visit, but on a previous occasion. The sticky, sweet, crunchy, gooey pie is truly addictive. Hurry to this gem-of-a-cafe next time you feel an indie (and I-wanna-pig-out-on-pie) vibe coming on.

Cafe Zambra
239 Jaffe Road, Wan Chai
2598 1322
Cost: ~ $30-40HKD per coffee drink

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The Chocolate Afternoon Tea is back at the MO! A buffet with 40-some chocolate desserts, hot chocolate, and a chocolate sculpture (in addition to the usual finger sandwiches, scones, and choice of coffee or tea), this all-you-can-eat chocolate buffet is like you’ve died and gone to gastronomical heaven. I made the trip a couple weekends ago with L, L, and J. When we arrived and the smell of chocolate hit us, L’s face lit up like it was Christmas, Halloween, and his birthday all rolled into one.

Perfect profiteroles

The dessert spread included something for every sugar fiend: thick fudge with sea salt, chocolate profiteroles, creamy chocolate mousse, the list goes on and on. The afternoon was a blur of “Ohhhh my gosh, that’s good,” and “Have you tried this one?!?!” but our favorites were the Chocolate Macaroons (crunchy cookies that finished soft and taffy-like after a few chews, topped with a shaving of silver foil), “America” Cheesecake Coated with Chocolate Ganache (sin in a sliver), and Baked Chocolate Mud Pie, which looked like little sailboats cruising into a chocolate sunset.

After a couple of hours, we were all seriously buzzing from the chocolate and tea. And bliss. Pure bliss.

Chocolate Afternoon Tea at the Mandarin Oriental
5 Connaught Road
2825 4007 (Bookings for the Clipper Lounge)
Cost:  $378 HKD/couple or $208 HKD/person

Note: The Chocolate Afternoon Tea is only offered on Saturdays and Sundays. Call (way) in advance for bookings. I believe the MO is doing this all through December.

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The frozen yogurt craze that’s swept the States has slowly migrated to Asia and, like every good cosmopolitan city, HK now houses a handful of fro-yo joints. I first discovered Yo Mama on Star Street, which has now expanded to a second location in the IFC Mall. I thought it was quite good, though after discovering Berrygood, it slightly pales in comparison.

A quick fix

We all scream for...fro yo?

Admittedly, I saw Berrygood last year while dining at Tuk Tuk Thai on Graham Street (another one of my favorite eateries). Having heard good things, I planned to visit soon, though never got around until this fall. Now that I know its deliciousness, I’m officially addicted. There are three choices of yogurt everyday: Original, Flavor of the Day, and Swirl (a mix of the two). You can get a “quick fix” for $30 with one free topping or an “indulge” for $40 with three free toppings. There’s much more selection for toppings here than at Yo Mama; they range from hard-to-find (Reese’s peanut butter cups!) to innovative (Cinnamon Toast Crunch) to (what I think is) slightly bizarre (Mott’s apple sauce? On yogurt?). The yogurt itself also tastes a bit more dairy-ish, if that makes sense (…or perhaps “less watery-tasting”?), and I like it!

My friend A has also clued me in on another fro-yo place on Elgin, which I’ll have to try soon. Anyone up for joining me?

Berrygood
Shop A, G/F, 41-43 Graham Street
2543 8393
Cost: ~ $40 HKD/person

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