When I was in college in Baltimore, my parents visited a couple times and always took my friends and me out to eat. I remember mussels in Fells Point and dim sum (there was like one place in the whole city in the late 80s/early 90s). As much as I wanted to build my independence, I always looked forward to their visits.
So this past weekend I spent a couple days in New York visiting my oldest son. Over the last couple years, I’ve gotten to know the owner of Hey Hey Canteen and always try to stop by her restaurant. It’s a Hong Kong thing.
This past Sunday, my brother, son, and one of his roommates trekked out to Gowanus/Park Slope for brunch.
I’m a Jewish mom, so one of my biggest worries in life is that my kids and anyone else I’m with won’t have enough to eat. The solution: order 2/3 of the menu. The menu at Hey Hey Canteen is inspired by Hong Kong comfort food. Everything is made to share, so share we did!
Hey Hey serves three types of homemade cold drinks. My brother ordered the hibiscus chia and I had the almond chai. I’ve also had their turmeric ginger cayenne tea (not pictured) when I was there last August.
Now for the food! We ordered two types of dumplings: pork with bacon bits and chicken without bacon.
Eggplant fries. I’ve had these before and they are amazing.
Lemongrass chicken wings:
Chrysanthemum Caesar. I admitted to Kay that I don’t care for chrysanthemum tea, but loved this salad. She reminded me that the flowers and the leaves aren’t the same. Duh. This salad was beyond delicious.
Char sui sweet potato hash. I don’t eat pork, so didn’t try the pork dumplings and I didn’t have this. But char sui is Cantonese barbecued pork and a staple of Hong Kong breakfast/lunch/brunch cuisine.
Cold sesame noodles:
Green fried rice. I love a good fried rice and this was one of the best I’ve ever had. If you don’t like fried rice, you just haven’t had a good one.
Hong Kong fried chicken sandwich, which I’ve also had before. The ramen crust is to die for and the bao goes with it perfectly.
We were beyond stuffed, although I talked the Kay the whole time (which was just as fabulous as her food) and didn’t eat as much quantity-wise as the others. Kay gave us these delicious chocolate cakes that look like canelles, but are chocolate cake throughout. They were so light and fluffy, and served with homemade ice cream and fruit preserves.
We had a few leftovers, but not much. Jake took them back to his dorm for later. I can’t wait to go back and am pretty sure it will be sooner than later.
Hey Hey Canteen is located at 400 4th Avenue at 6th Street in Brooklyn. The prices are so reasonable and the portions are perfect. They’re generous enough where everyone can have seconds, but not too much where you’re too stuffed to go on before the last dish comes out.