Last week I talked about Southern barbecue – ribs, chicken, brisket and other delicious meats slowly smoked over wood fire. This week I’m talking about barbecue again, but from the east. Way east for Chinese style barbecue. I’ve written about Dak Hing before, my favourite place for Chinese barbecue uptown. Succulent whole roast pork with impossibly crispy and crunch skin, deep and flavourful poached free-range chicken in seasoned soya sauce and fiery red and tender barbecue pork. This time we’re heading to Chinatown to a classic spot that has been serving up some of the best Hong Kong style Chinese barbecue in the city for ages – Dobe and Andy.
What do you know about Chinese barbecue? I don’t mean a vision of me standing in front of the grill on the balcony of my condo. You’ve probably seen it in chinatown, or in the corner of an Asian grocery stores. A large metal display illuminated by heat lamps adorned with glistening roasted meats like chicken, duck, slices of pork, and more likely than not, a full roasted pig. A masterful hand thumping away at a large wooden chopping block covered in oil. There are many places around the city, but my favourite is Dak Hing Barbecue located in Côte-des Neiges.
You’ve probably walked past this on numerous occasions the last time you were in Chinatown stocking up on your yearly quota of chocolate Pocky, or going for dim sum. To the uninitiated, the bbq stand might look intimidating with its glass window showcasing various roasted and barbecued meats glistening under the heat lamps and the lineup of old Asian aunties yelling, talking loudly, clambering to make sure they cop the right bird that looks plumpest or the perfect piece of char siu that is both fatty and lean. To help you navigate this uncharted delicious roasted terrain, here is my definitive guide to the Chinese bbq stand.