Hong Kong's 'fine Cantonese dining' sets its sights on the world

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Indy Lifestyle Online

Even for a city that is world-famous for its unique cuisine, Hong Kong has this year set standards never before reached.

There are now 14,000 restaurants in the city - more than ever before, according to the Hong Kong government - and turnover has broken the HK$80 billion (7.4 billion euro) barrier for the year so far, which is another record for the industry.

Those kinds of results would turn even the most conservative businessman's head and so it now seems to be the case. Not content with feeding their own kind, Hong Kong's entrepreneurs are looking to spread the good word - and spread a good table - further afield.

The first stop, of course, is China but the global spread of the newest generation of Hong Kong style restaurants is also part of the bigger picture.

The people behind the Cuisine Cuisine ( http://www.cuisinecuisine.hk) chain of distinctly Cantonese-style dishes - the kind for which Hong Kong has long been famous - have this week announced plans to take the likes of their trademark honey-glazed barbecue pork and sautéed prawns with black truffle into mainland China, adding 10 restaurants nationwide over the next decade, supplementing the branch that will be opened in the capital Beijing next year.

"We look forward to cater to an ever-increasing appetite for Cantonese cuisine,'' said Romain Chan, general manager of the Miramar Group which currently has two branches of Cuisine Cuisine in Hong Kong.

Management promotes Cuisine Cuisine as "fine Cantonese dining'' and the prices are there to match - with a staple such as sweet and sour porks ribs with ginger going for around HK$120 (11 euros) - three times what you'd pay in a street-side café.

But it is the quality that counts, say management, and Cuisine Cusine's branch in the IFC Mall was recommended by the Michelin Guide Hong Kong & Macau 2009.

Meanwhile, another big player in the Hong Kong restaurant scene is also about to launch a Chinese operation.

The people behind the Lan Kwai Fong ( http://www.lankwaifong.com) entertainment district in the heart of town - which is full of international bars and restaurants - are putting the finishing touches to a similar development in the Chinese city of Chengdu, in Sichuan province - and say they have other Asian cities also in their sights.