Friday, November 29, 2013

No girls allowed!

The Mandarin Oriental is a such a classic example of the British occupation of Hong Kong during the 60s. Luxurious and sophisticated, British finery with an oriental touch.

We ate there twice - the famous buffet for Jansen's mother's birthday, and again in The Chinnery.

So, the thing about The Chinnery, a heavily wood panelled bar, is that up until 1990, NO WOMEN WERE ALLOWED. Yup, 23 years ago, I wouldn't have been allowed in. Actually I wouldn't have been allowed in because I was underage, but that's not my point. This was a "gentlemen's club", a place to booze, swear and talk about women.

Today it's just as difficult to get in because it's quite small and very exclusive. It still ooozes testosterone, with its dark wood panelling and low lights. I don't doubt it is probably still very much in its original form, with deep, leather couches and original portraits on the walls, the colonial influence is everywhere.

The menu is probably very much as it was in the 1960s too, traditional British pub food like fish and chips, bangers and mash, fish pie and Yorkshire pudding. And they do it oh so well.

Today it's more famous for having the largest collection of single malt whiskeys. People seem to forget that once it was so sexist! Still, was kinda cool to experience a place of history.