In the last few months I seem to have been hitting quite a few Chinese restaurants to dine and this only increased last weekend when I visited Ho Wong for one of my friend Trudies birthday.
I had heard so many things about Ho Wong since moving to Glasgow and it definitely seems to be a bit of a Glasgow institution for great authentic Chinese cuisine, so I was very excited to try it out.
Located on York Street in the city centre Ho Wong is a fairly up market restaurants. The vibe was quite a weird one tho…the decor was cool, modern and swanky but I still didn’t really enjoy the atmosphere. I can’t really pin point why but I just never really felt like I relaxed.
The staff were swift and efficient but not really overly friendly or welcoming. I really have nothing good or bad to say about the waiting staff.
The food at Ho Wong is pretty expensive in comparison to most other Chinese restaurants. After doing a quick calculation we worked out we would be the best part of £40/£50 per person before drinks, so we settled on the a la carte set meal for 6 at £32 per person which seemed a bit better cost wise.
We started with a large plate of Mixed Hors D’Oeuvres – Chilli and Salt Spare Ribs, Prawn Toast, Chicken Satay, Yuk Sung, Salt and Pepper Prawn and Spring Rolls. Everything was good and I enjoyed it although it didn’t blow my socks off, special mention has to go to the Prawns and chicken satay tho which were both really lovely.
Next we were presented with Aromatic Crispy Duck served with Cucumber, Spring Onions, Hoi Sin Sauce and Pancakes. The duck was gorgeous…beautifully crispy and the fat rendered well so there was no fatty pockets. The portion was massive and more than enough for each of us to have 3/4 pancakes. I have a bit of a thing for aromatic duck so this was probably my favourite dish.
For mains we were served a banquet of Fillet of Beef in Chilli and Salt, Sweet and Sour Chicken, King Prawns with Spring Onions and Ginger, Fillet of Beef Cantonese Style and Sliced Chicken with Green Pepper, Salt and Chilli Chicken with Fried Rice & Soft Noodles.
It was certainly a large spread of food…I wouldn’t say I had any stand out dishes (which in its self probably says everything I need to!) but I did like the juicy big prawns which were pretty tasty and the tender salt and chilli chicken which I went back to a few times for more pieces.
Again I wasn’t blow away with anything but it was all nice enough at £32 a head, if I had paid nearly £20 for any of these dishes I would have been seriously unimpressed.
Dessert was also included in the price but I decided to skip as they all looked like just frozen bough in ice cream dishes – which is exactly what they were. Utterly uninspiring and disappointing, and in the current Glasgow food scene just isn’t good enough anymore.
Our portion of the bill came to £80 for two people which included the tip…was I happy with the value for money?? Yeah I guess so….maybe?!?!
I am always more than happy to pay a reasonable amount for food so it’s not the overall cost that bothers me, what I can’t get my head around is that the food doesn’t even come close to places like Asian Gourmet or KaKaLok and is nearly 3 times more expensive.
The whole experience just left me feeling kind of meh! I neither liked or disliked it. I never enjoyed the vibe and although the food was nice enough I have had much better and more authentic Chinese food in quite a few other Glasgow restaurants recently much cheaper.
I doubt I would go back when there are so many other brilliant places to choose from.