As I sat down to write this post, I realized, it is already a month since we came back from Hong Kong, and I haven’t even started going through all the places we visited. There were some pretty awesome restaurants there, and it would be a shame to keep them just to myself. Yardbird is one such place: well known by local expats, but rarely mentioned in tourist guides. Perhaps for the reason that you cannot reserve a table, so who wants a bunch tourists queuing to get into your favorite restaurant. We were lucky enough to be tipped off by a friendly waiter at restaurant Amber, so there we were, a quarter before Yardbird opened, waiting to get our hands on some of that awesome yakitori.
In short, Yardbird serves different yakitori (Japanese chicken skewers) as well as some other side dishes, and they have an innovative cocktail list mainly based on Japanese whiskeys and Shochu. The food menu, created by Chef Matt Abergel, focuses on the many different parts of a chicken, from neck to tail, that are grilled over traditional Binchotan charcoal. I passed the kitchen on my way to the washrooms and saw six sweating chefs turning tiny skewers on two large coal grills. This is a bit of a snacking place. Depending on the dish, there are one to three skewers on the plate. I would suggest ordering at least three to four per person to fend off hunger. We also ordered the Duck Friend Rice, which was a perfect side dish for the meats. Other recommended dishes: sweet corn tempura and KFC (Korean Friend Cauliflower).
The cocktails are fresh, with ingredients like grilled lime, pineapple and kimchi. The bases are Japanese whikeys, shochu and sake. The air conditioning wasn’t working properly, so I chucked down at least three big cocktails. M eyed the wine list and had some new zealand sauvignong blanc and a beer. All drinks went really well with the salty yakitori.
I rate Yardbird as one of the best finds of the week: casual ambiance, tasty food and juicy cocktails. It is all a girl can want on a hot afternoon in Hong Kong.