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5 Dishes to Eat in Peru

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Peru is fast-gaining a spot in international culinary conversations. It is home to dishes and flavours that are unique to the region, and not found anywhere else. Few places offer such diversity of ingredients,... Read more

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Local Food at the Java Road Municipal Services Building Submitted by: francesknguyen
Java Road Municipal Services Building, 99 Java Road, Hong Kong

I love going on food adventures. Whenever I’m away in some far-flung destination, I’ll embark on a mini-journey trying to find an offbeat place where only locals go to eat. This was the case in Hong Kong. I notified a friend that I was in her hometown and wanted a recommendation of restaurants. She suggested I go to the Java Road Municipal Services Building and take the elevators upstairs to find a food court. I was a bit puzzled by the name, and when I arrived at the place in the northern area of Hong Kong, it looked more like a dilapidated concrete building than a food court. I stepped inside and saw a food market downstairs. That’s when I realized it was a former government building that has since been converted into a food court and food market. Awesome.

I took the ramshackle elevator and went up to the second floor. Once I stepped out, I was overwhelmed by the crowded tables and the loud, buzzy chatter of spoken Cantonese. Anytime I was within close sitting distance to a nearby food stall, a lady would urge me to sit down at her table and try her meals. After walking back and forth, I decided to sit at an empty table. I looked at what the locals were eating, so I ordered the black fried pepper steak. The steak arrived and was heaped with lettuce, rice and eggs and topped with a thick brown gravy sauce. It was a hearty dish but tasted delicious in a homey-soul-filling way. The server and adjacent customer were very gracious and patient, especially when they realized that I didn’t speak Cantonese. The server suggested I drink Hong Kong-style milk tea while the lady sitting next to me offered me to try some of her fragrant egg fried rice. I left Hong Kong soon afterwards and was happy to report back to my friend that despite the odd-sounding name, the food, service, and lively atmosphere was excellent.


 



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