04 Mar2010

My Goose is Cooked…

by Marketman


That visual above is exactly how I am feeling about my weight loss bet with the Teen. I don’t often concede defeat before a deadline, but with some 6-7 pounds shy of the target on March 8th, I feel like it’s the impossible dream. :) There are no credible excuses other than a lack of personal discipline, but Sister’s arrival and the subsequent ensaimada, cinnamon roll and pan de sal (still haven’t gotten this right) experiments haven’t helped. We bought 50 kilos of flour yesterday, if you can imagine! In addition, cousins from Australia joined us out of town on a two day eat fest. Then Mrs. MM and I spent a long weekend in Hong Kong on business but still managed to eat a phenomenal amount of food. So I am busted I think, and though I came close at say 183.7 pounds a couple of weeks ago, I have now gone back up to 186 and while it isn’t over until the fat blogger sings, losing 6 pounds in four days is something I would need Manny Pacquio’s trainer to achieve… So let’s talk about roasted goose instead. :)


Yung Kee Restaurant on Wellington Street in Central is a Hong Kong institution. I recall first having roasted duck or pork or goose at this restaurant many decades ago, and over the years I have eaten there dozens of times. Creatures of habit, a trip to Hong Kong is somehow incomplete with some duck rice at Yung Kee. My parents and in-laws were Yung Kee and Spring Deer devotees, along with thousands of Filipinos who visited the territory in the 60’s and 70’s. Yung Kee moved to their current premises on Wellington Street in 1964, the year I was born! Over the years, the restaurant has gone from spartan to somewhat seedy and run down to a more upscale space. But regardless of the interiors, the goose, duck and pork has always been mouthwatering. A huge display window faces the street and you can see exactly what they have in stock at that moment.


The restaurant has become rather pricey in recent years, particularly if you head to the upper floors and order from an extensive menu. I think we once ordered a steamed fish there and almost had heart failure when the bill arrived. But don’t be intimidated. There are a couple of ways to eat brilliantly at great value… First, try to stick to a crowded table on the first floor. Don’t be picky and take whatever seats they give you, even if you have to share table space with strangers. Order what the locals are ordering… simple platters of roast meats, some kailan or veggies and rice. If you sit and have a soft drink with your meal, you can probably eat very well for HK$ 80-120 per person or roughly US$10-15. Their roasted meats are delicious. There is a palpable difference between Yung Kee and large chains offering the same kind of roasted fare.


In this case, the restaurant is still family owned and operated and they haven’t opened several other branches, with the all important buck or maximum profit in mind. Great food has a great following over the decades and that’s why this place has been around for over 60 years!


But here’s a sort of insider tip from Marketman (and a local friend). Want a taste of Yung Kee but on a shoestring budget? When facing the facade of the restaurant, take notice of a recessed door to the left of the display window that is the entrance to the “take out” section. You can get a nice portion of roasted goose with rice to take away for an amazing HK$34 or roughly US$4.50!!! And the take-away menu is EXTENSIVE! Just enjoy the food in your hotel or in a nearby park bench (not so easy to find those). Not many foreigners are aware of this great option and frankly, I think it is wonderful. :)

Yung Kee Restaurant
32-40 Wellington Street
Central, Hong Kong
Tel. 852-2522.1624



  1. rose says:

    wow!!!! that really is so yummmyyyyy!!!! i will surely try that when i go to HK.. thanks

    Mar 4, 2010 | 9:21 pm


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  3. naghihingalo says:

    I used to live in Hong Kong and was a suki of that take-out counter for years. Wonderful stuff. I used to wonder- with all those ducks and geese, what did they do with the livers?

    I was on a serious diet once when a friend of mine- whose company did business with the owners of Yung Kee- arranged for a group of us to have a special dinner at Yung Kee to celebrate four people’s birthdays. I knew it was going to be a diet buster. It was served Chinese banquet style- one dish at a time. After a couple of light and delicious courses, the waiters came with two enormous platters of duck and goose livers, flavored the same way as those roast ducks and geese. Each piece of liver was almost the size of a cake of tofu. I still remember how they tasted, how they felt in my mouth, how much there was of it… makes me swoon, really. The rest of the meal was great, too, but it’s those livers I’ll never forget.

    It took lots of exercise and lots of steamed vegetables to lose the weight from that dinner and get back on the straight and narrow. But it was so worth it!

    Mar 4, 2010 | 9:27 pm

  4. natie says:

    Great pictures, MM!! makes me feel like an early morning rush to Canal St Chinatown…

    rapid wt-loss??? your best bet now is just fluid loss and u know what to take and do–but you’ll only be kidding yourself..hehe..the Teen wins!

    Mar 4, 2010 | 9:33 pm

  5. ragamuffin girl says:

    I was about to say order from the take out menu for half the price until I saw your note in the end.:) This is what hubby does! And he gets to enjoy the pretty generous serving in his office, still hot since his office is 2 mins. away.

    For chasiu rice I do prefer Tai Hing Roast Meat shop, found all over HK, there’s one in Queen’s Road Central after the escalators and in Jaffe Road in Causeway Bay. The meat is juicy and caramelized. Fu Sing Shark’s Fin Restaurant in CWB also offers a mean chasiu. And place called Joy Hing in Henessy Road, straddling CWB and Wan Chai has yummy cha siu with the dark sauce found at all tables, you can pour as much on your rice as you wish.

    Mar 4, 2010 | 10:02 pm

  6. junb says:

    Yup Roasted Duck/Goose and charsiew (BBQ pork) or what they called hongkong roasted meat is one of my favorite even here in Singapore.

    MM, you may want to try your own char siew version. Here’s a recipe that appears on a straits times a couple of years ago. http://chutzpah.typepad.com/slow_movement/2008/08/st-fired-up-by-char-siew.html
    It works well even on an oven.

    Mar 4, 2010 | 10:17 pm

  7. junb says:

    BTW there is a comment that the recipe works better on a pork belly

    Mar 4, 2010 | 10:19 pm

  8. thelma says:

    junb, i will definitely try this recipe. it
    sounds really easy to make. thanks,,,,,

    Mar 4, 2010 | 11:28 pm

  9. rhea says:

    sorry to digress…

    not sure if you’ve mentioned it in one of your previous posts already, but… did you just admit how old you are MM? lol.

    Mar 4, 2010 | 11:45 pm

  10. marilen says:

    Ate once at Yung Kee and the roast goose was heavenly – there were leftovers at end of the meal (but since we were being treated to the delicious lunch) I was too embarassed to gather the remains and doggy bag it – my frugal soul regretted it all the way back to the hotel! Thanks for the tip, MM – next time eat at the lower level or better yet carryout back to the hotel and then kamayan!!

    Mar 5, 2010 | 12:16 am

  11. atbnorge says:

    @rhea, the way he adores James Bond tells a lot about one’s age, hehehe.

    I want to say I could smell a win for the Teen, but let us give MM a fighting chance. He has 3 days…? Good luck.

    Mar 5, 2010 | 12:17 am

  12. betty q. says:

    Hello Thelma: If you want to try another char siew recipe, go to Rasa Malaysia blog. I have tried her recipe and it is excellent!….the final product is as close as you can get to the ones you buy at Chinese delis. I tweaked her recipe and used CHEE HOU SAUCE instead of hoisin. I did not have Chnese rose wine, so I used dry sherry instead!… CHEE HOU SAUCE has replaced hoisin in my pantry now. It is worth getting it. If you cannot get it, I will be more than happy to send you a few jars of it. Just let me know!

    Mar 5, 2010 | 12:29 am

  13. betty q. says:

    Thanks for the tip on Yung Kee, MM….hubby and 2 of his best friends are leaving in April for a boys’ FUN and FOOD trip. Now, though my hubby is Chinese and so are his friends, they have no clue where to go in HK for all of them migrated here when they were babies and have not seen HK since then.

    Mar 5, 2010 | 12:35 am

  14. Jean says:

    Yes, Yung Kee! We actually plan a quick weekend at HK just to eat roast goose at Yung Kee and the waterfront restaurants in Sai Kung for the exotic and live seafood.

    Mar 5, 2010 | 12:46 am

  15. thelma says:

    thanks for your offer, bettyq. let me firt go to
    this ranch 99 supermarket in mira mesa and
    see if they carry that chee hou sauce brand.
    they have a wide selection of chinese brand
    products, and hopefully, they might have it.
    i will also explore that rasa malaysia blog. i
    will definitely let you know my char siew
    experiment, okay?

    Mar 5, 2010 | 3:10 am

  16. Angela says:

    Hi BettyQ! Is Chee Hou a brand or is that what the sauce is called? What does it taste like?

    Mar 5, 2010 | 3:25 am

  17. betty q. says:

    Angela…it is the name of the sauce…not the brand. It tastes like hoisin with other stuff added to it …brings hoisin a notch up. I use it to make those Taiwanese beef noodle…add to the the stock used in braising the beef …also I addd it to make the my FIL’s Oxtail Stew as well as Vietnamese Beef Stew…also to make the dipping sauce for Salad Rolls. I don’t know whether it is a Chinese habit but my hubby and boys eat instant noodle right before bedtime. They like the instant dried noodle …I forgot the brand and it has a seasoning packet but the noodle is not with soup packet.So, I add a tsp or so of that Chee HOu. Also, it is not as sweet as hoisin…soybean paste being the first ingredient while water and sugar are the first 2 ingredients on hoisin..

    Mar 5, 2010 | 4:04 am

  18. Rona Y says:

    MM, you could just stop taking in fluids for a few days and dehydrate yourself! For every 1 litre of water you drink, you “gain” 1kg (most of it will soon leave your body as urine).

    (By the way, I’m kidding. . . not about the fluid/weight gain thing, but about dehydrating yourself just to win a bet!)

    The last time I was at Yung Kee I was as sick as a dog. I was actually afraid they might not let me leave the country as I think I was running a slight fever. I had some steamed fish there that was excellent! But I can’t remember much of it. :-(

    Mar 5, 2010 | 5:26 am

  19. betty q. says:

    …and while you are at it, Thelma…go buy Hong Kong flour in the Asian store. Make enough char siew so you canmake them into char siew bao…..while visiting Rasa Malaysia (and no, I am not related to her nor am I being paid to do this!) go click on her guest blogger’s site who made those bao’s. Believe me too when I tell you it is like the dim sum ones….soft and fluffy like a pillow. I have made them dozens of times …youjust need to practice on pleating them so they “smile ” …a tip….FREEZE the filling so it is easier to handle and will not drip all over while you are pleating!

    Ay, naku…MM! I forgot you were in Hong KOng! I should have told you to bring back Hong Kong flour!

    Mar 5, 2010 | 6:11 am

  20. betty q. says:

    …and while you are at it, Thelma…go buy Hong Kong flour in the Asian store. Make enough char siew so you canmake them into char siew bao…..while visiting Rasa Malaysia (and no, I am not related to her nor am I being paid to do this!) go click on her guest blogger’s site who made those bao’s. Believe me too when I tell you it is like the dim sum ones….soft and fluffy like a pillow. I have made them dozens of times …youjust need to practice on pleating them so they “smile ” …a tip….FREEZE the filling so it is easier to handle and will not drip all over while you are pleating!

    Ay, naku MM….I forgot you were in Hong Kong. I would have told you tobring back Hong Kong flour!

    Mar 5, 2010 | 6:12 am

  21. F says:

    Hey MM,
    Do I smell a Bak Kwa post/recipe coming up soon?

    Mar 5, 2010 | 8:17 am

  22. Artisan Chocolatier says:

    Oh Yes, Yung Kee and Spring Deer are always “Must” visit whenever we set foot in Hongkong. Visiting HK is never complete, if we miss eating in these 2 institutions.

    I remember way back when Pres. Cory was still in office, my in-laws brought back a Yung Kee roasted duck for her as pasalubong. This was one of Pres. Cory’s favorite.

    Mar 5, 2010 | 9:26 am

  23. i love sta.rosa says:

    8 to 6 whey meals a day will shred your fat like ronnie coleman or jay cutler.. heheheheh.. hirap talaga mag diet.. pinaka hardest part sa bodybuilding…

    Mar 5, 2010 | 9:34 am

  24. Joyce says:

    the best roast goose i’ve had so far was yue kee ( 裕记) roasted goose restaurant at sham tseng, new territories. its in an area with many roast goose restos and while a bit farther than yung kee is cheaper and a good way to see the rest of hong kong. the smell of all the roasted goose being sliced in the resto is just intoxicating. i noticed that when they slice the goose, they take out a huge chunk of fat underneath its skin, my guess its to lessen the cloying fatty taste.
    yung kee also has great XO sauce! bit spicier than the usual

    Mar 5, 2010 | 12:34 pm

  25. Lava Bien says:

    MM regarding losing wieght,
    You should seriously try the Lemon Detox thingy, just google it wtih Beyonce’s name and you should get the formula. Fresh Lemon Juice, Grade A Maple Syrup, Cayenne Pepper (just like a regualr lemonade without the sugar plus the cayenne pepper).

    I swear by it, it cleanses your tummy system and after 3 days of doing it, I’ve lost 9 lbs. When my taekwondo fighters have to lose weight, they do the same thing, almost effort less and they make weight every single time.

    Mar 5, 2010 | 4:37 pm

  26. JCo says:

    hi market man! what a timely post! my friends and i were in hong kong for the standard chartered international marathon and celebrated our finishes with lunch @ yung kee… we ordered the goose, kailan and scallops and white rice… the meal was a memorable post-race medal =)

    Mar 5, 2010 | 6:16 pm

  27. Roelm says:

    Hi Marketman,

    Were you able to check out the Whole Health Source blog link, I included in my comment more than a month back? If so, what did you think?

    So they serve duck and goose liver in Yung Kee … Very nutritious food by the way. Quite high in vitamins and minerals including Vitamin K2 in it’s MK-4 form.

    Mar 5, 2010 | 6:22 pm

  28. silly lolo says:

    You have to agree that the secret to those great Asian noodle soups is the broth. Both the Chinese and the Japanese seem to have the magic and techniques to produce wonderful broth.
    To my taste, the most wonderful broth comes out of a Balut! Absolutely nothing like it. And I bet you never really thought about it.

    Mar 5, 2010 | 8:36 pm

  29. Artisan Chocolatier says:

    Silly Lolo, I agree with you totally with regards to Balut broth! I was served a balut souffle at the original nielsen tower restaurant (ayala triangle) in Makati, the lunch of my evening wedding. It was delicious!!!

    My relatives told me I needed it, since I played 18-holes of golf that morning! hahahaha.

    Mar 5, 2010 | 10:53 pm

  30. Angela says:

    Back when I was a kid, the balut broth was all I would eat. Didn’t eat anything else that was in that egg. Now, you couldn’t pay me to eat the stuff!!

    Mar 6, 2010 | 1:32 am

  31. Marketman says:

    Silly Lolo, yes, it’s the BROTH that matters and it is here that patience, experience, ingredients, balance matters. Roelm, yes, I did read the link and found it immensely sensible. But with me eating noodles, fatty goose, sugars and reducing exercise there is no one else to blame for failure on the diet front but myself. :) JCo, we were in HK and could see the finish line of the SC Marathon from our suki computer dealer! Lava Bien, will check out the cleansing thing. Though I tend not to do specific things like a single soup diet, just low carbs, etc., I am ready to read anything… In the end, I honestly think cutting caloric intake, type of intake, and increased activity is still the most sensible approach over an extended period of time. F, sorry, no recipe for bak kwa in the works. bettyq, if they have been away from hong kong for 40+ years, they will be stunned by how incredibly developed and vibrant it is… rhea, I have noted my age before, usually in birthday posts :) junb, thanks for the link! nahihingalo, the livers, the livers, why didn’t I think to ask for that?!

    Mar 6, 2010 | 5:53 am

  32. Lee says:

    the Hong Kong posts came a way too late to act as my food guide :) There will be a next time..
    The rickety 2 HK$ tram awaits.

    Mar 6, 2010 | 6:17 pm

  33. Kai says:

    MM, it’s better to think of your health first than worry about losing weight. I’m just glad you lost to the Teen (or did you? it’s D-Day today…) because my doctor always says only 10% of your weight should be shed WITHIN a year. Roughly a pound per month is the healthy way that could be tolerated by your body. Yeah, I’m perennially on a diet, too, and always monitored by the doc because I get pregnant every two years or so and keep on adding up the pounds. And then there are the children’s (month) birthdays and birthday cakes….
    What about that peking duck resto at the HK airport you mentioned way back? Most times kasi HK is a place where we change planes, heeheee….

    Mar 8, 2010 | 11:12 am

  34. Marketman says:

    Kai, in the airport, I eat at the foodcourt upstairs in the departure area, above duty free. The Cafe de Coral there has a decent duck rice or char siu rice. Lee, here’s another tip, if you ride on the lower deck of the HK ferry, its cheaper than the “tourist” deck above… :)

    Mar 8, 2010 | 1:18 pm

  35. Jack Hammer says:

    MM did Silly Lolo mention if the broth is from a raw egg or hard-boiled egg ?? Gotta try that when I am next in Manila in May/June to get my Permanent Resident Visa ….Yahooooo

    Mar 8, 2010 | 2:01 pm

  36. Mrs. Kolca says:

    i remember my long walks in causeway bay and central.. then after dark, i would grab a packed dinner at a nearby restaurant near my friend’s apt. in prince edward.. steamed rice and duck roast with vegetable soup for only HK$ 10 (roughly P65 back then).. hmm.. i love hong kong! :D

    Mar 9, 2010 | 9:35 am

  37. shanghaiedflip says:

    Totally agree with Joyce. Yue Kee is a long way out from the center of Hong Kong in Sham Tseng, but it’s worth the trip. Just ask the locals who go out for good goose ;)

    There’s a whole row of goose restaurants in the area but Yue Kee is one of the better known ones. The goose I had in Yue Kee was juicier than the one I had in Yung Kee. Probably because because it had just a bit more fat :P


    Only problem with Yue Kee is the trip involved going there. I had to take the Tsuen Wan line (red one on the map) all the way to the last satation “Tsuen Wan” 16 stops from Central! And then a bus to the goose restaurant area. Still… for that goose… totally worth the trip. :)

    Mar 9, 2010 | 4:34 pm


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