The first time I went to Hong Kong in 1982, I was treated to a seafood dinner in Lei Yue Mun by my dad’s business colleagues. It was an experience that I never had elsewhere or can replicate anywhere else.
Lei Yue Mun “鯉魚門” or Carp Channel is named after a short channel between Tseung Kwan O and Victoria Harbour separating Hong Kong Island and the Kowloon Peninsula. Historically important as the eastern gateway into the harbour it is now renowned for hosting the world famous Seafood Bazzar.
Lei Yue Mun Village
The fishing village of Lei Yue Mun is a slice of old Hong Kong alive and well in the modern metropolis. About 150 years ago, this village was dominated by fishing, farming and mining. From the 1960s, it began to gain a reputation as a good spot for alfresco seafood dining.
Strictly speaking Lei Yu Mun is the name of the channel, and of the district next to the channel. The village itself is a combination of four squatter villages which are today some of the rare examples still left of this style of rural living.
The first village you reach when you visit Lei Yu Mun is Sam Ka Tsuen, which is where the harbour, typhoon shelter and the main restaurants are located.
The process of dining at Lei Yue Mun is very different from what you might expect in a typical restaurant situation. First you will select your seafood from the live fish shops, choosing the type and specifying the quantity of each you want
Once seafood has been selected and weighted you’ll be told the final price. You can bargain a little more and round down this price if you are choosing several things. The operator of the seafood selling stall will then be able to recommend a nearby restaurant where you can have it cooked, they will help to carry the food to that restaurant.
The fees you pay at the restaurant are for cooking the food, not the seafood itself. Of course if you have additional dishes such as meat or vegetables then you will pay for this directly to the restaurant as normal. The same applies to rice and drinks.
Dining in Lei Yue Mun
Although Chinese food is typically served with all dishes on the table at once to share when it comes to seafood as in Lei Yue Mun as in any major seafood area in Hong Kong there is more a tendency to serve dishes in sequence. This allows each type of seafood to be appreciated as it is hot from the wok and at its best flavour. So as each dish lands on the table be bold and eat up, because more will be coming!
As is the norm with Chinese dining in Hong Kong once you have completed your meal it is expected that you pay the bill and leave. There is no “relaxing with a drink after dinner” tradition in Hong Kong as there is in some parts of the world.
Happiness Seafood Restaurant 快樂漁港酒家
Tel : 2340 1998