By Hans Ebert


It was time for some Slow Food and somewhere to go on a lazy Thursday night in Hong Kong that needed some waking up.

Slow Food can get things going because there are only a handful of restaurants here where time has stood still and one can engage in intelligent conversation without the senses being dulled by unwanted drunk companions, hangers on and cheesy lounge singers in horrendously overpriced surroundings where you often see dead people.

Despite all the recommendations about trying this and that new place in Sheung Wan, Sai Ying Poon, Sun Street etc, more often than not they’re overrun by pretentiousness while others keep on keeping on by being well-known channels for money laundering.

This latter network is growing tentacles to accommodate more octopuses from the dark side, mainly Mainland China and more recently Eastern Europe, all of which helps those who need to keep up false pretences. But as long as this is part of their business model and Hong Kong turns a blind eye to these shenanigans as they don’t intrude on personal lives, it’s about live and let live and let’s get on with life.

It beats the hell outta working to keep a restaurant, bar or club open only to listen to a mantra heard far too often here and around the world: “We’re breaking even.” In other words, “We’re living in fear everyday and have no idea how to pay our suppliers”.

Jimmy’s Kitchen in D’Aguilar Street on Hong Kong side- there’s a sister restaurant in Ashley Road, Kowloon- has never had these problems. Ever. Why? Probably because there’s an unwritten law that you don’t mess with history. You respect it.

Opened by the Landau family, Jimmy’s Kitchen is safe, predictable and tremendous value for money. The menu is an old friend as are many of the waiters and the regulars along with longtime menu favourites going back a few generations.

We chose an old favourite – the Madras Chicken Curry with a side serving of gravy and condiments. It’s a secret family restaurant and one would have to go to Sri Lanka for a better pukka colonial style dry chicken curry.

This was followed by our favourite dessert- the restaurant’s famous Stick Toffee Pudding. The bill including four glasses of a very acceptable house Red plus gratuities came to HK$1,100. It was a highly enjoyable dinner for two and where time flew. Three hours were spent on intelligent conversation plus enjoying dishes that cannot be found anywhere else and good old fashioned service one doesn’t find in Hong Kong anymore.

Best of all, we were not hyped nor ripped off by those whose days of unable to talk the talk nor walk the walk are seeing them trip up and quickly leave for new shores.

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