Sunday, 26 April 2015

Sunday's Grocery - it's schnitzel time

Yeah, there are a lot of cool dining spots to check out in Hong Kong, so many, that it's hard to keep track of them all.  So when we heard about a cool little spot out at Kennedy Town, we didn't muck about, plans were made and within days we were sitting out the front of Sunday's Grocery.

I'd never been to Kennedy Town, which is the end of the line on the MRT line that runs along the front of the island.  Our plan was to walk there from the Mid Levels, a tour that took us through the University of Hong Kong, which is just down the street (and around the corner) from where we live.  It was quite a pleasant walk, even though it was a little hot and sticky and there may have been some lost time in the Uni, trying to get our bearings.

We'd timed our walk perfectly, and by the time we were standing outside of the very hard to miss and brightly coloured Sunday's Grocery, it was very conveniently time for lunch.  Stepping inside, I was surprised by how tiny the space was, essentially just a shopfront and counter, with no room for loitering (or dining) within.  I wasn't too sure what to expect to be honest.

Created by Matt Abergele and Lindsay Jang, who've an eye for creating awesome little ventures (Yardbird and RONIN being their other hotspots), Sunday's Grocery is a liquor store, curated convenience store and a takeaway sandwich shop.  With our primary reason for visiting a bite of lunch, we ignored the wide variety of Japanese Whisky, sake, shochu beer and wine on offer and made a beeline for the short but interesting looking takeaway menu.

Sunday's main offering is made-to-order sandwiches, soups, pickles and fried chicken, with all options pieced together (literally) on little magnetic board.  With the stark yellow and black lettering, the menu was hard to miss and easy to look over.  Decisions made, it was only a few short steps over to the counter to place our order from the hip young thing behind the register.  To be fair, he was an extremely friendly and helpful young guy, who helped me through the myriad of pressed juices to choose from.

With nowhere to sit inside, we made our way to a little alcove next door that was set up with milk crates of varying colours (red and yellow) that were placed in such a way that you could sit and eat your meal.  It was tight and cramped, but kind of cool, just sitting on milk crates, watching the world go by and waiting for our gourmet sandwiches.  While we were waiting, SC was sucking back on a Mexican Coke (with real cane sugar and not HCFC), while I went the healthier option with a 'Be Juiced' healthy detox pressed juice.

Our sandwiches arrived in fairly quick order, wrapped in red and white checkered wax paper, looking identical apart from stickers holding the rolls together.  Schnitzel for me and Banh Mi for the girl.

My chicken schnitzel roll was as well put together as it was delicious.  The lightly toasted turkish roll was fresh, as was the salad of lettuce and tomato, with a thin slice of breaded chicken, then finished off with a light mayonnaise and some pickles (which I extracted).  The balance of ingredients to bread was just right, so it didn't feel overly heavy and I could get the distinct flavour of the chicken, which was even a little creamy tasting!

SC's Banh Mi was definitely not a traditional version of the Vietnamese favourite.  Using turkish bread instead of the more traditional baguette (harking back to the French influence in Vietnam), as well as pressed pork, it was just a little odd.  The pressed pork had a slightly processed flavour, and while the pickled vegetables gave the roll a more authentic flavour, it just wasn't quite right.  Having said that, if we weren't expecting a Banh Mi and were just having a pork sandwich, it would have been pretty good.

Sunday's Grocery is pretty much unlike anything I'd come across in HK so far and certainly would not have been out of place in down town New York.  Bright, brash and with a confidence that comes from running a couple of successful ventures, the team from Sunday's Grocery have got quite the concept happening.

I think they know it too, with an opportunity to buy merchandise along with your booze, condiments or lunch, you can buy yourself a cool t-shirt as well as a feed.  Locating Sunday's Grocery in Kennedy Town was an interesting move and with an ever increasing number of expats, maybe a very canny move.  I'm personally not sold on Kennedy Town, but I did like my schnitzel roll enough to want a repeat visit....  If only it was a little closer.

Oh, in case you were wondering, our visit to Sunday's Grocery was ironically on a Saturday.

A couple of gourmet sandwiches for lunch!
The chicken schnitzel burger was the pick of the options
Indeed we did
There were lots of drink options, as well as plenty of beers and hard liquor 
Yep, you could become a Sunday's Grocery fanatic - get the t-shirt 
And we were
I only just noticed the photo bombers :)
A fairly light menu and I hear the Scotch Egg Sando is a killer.  Maybe next time

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