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The culinary snobs who con us into paying way too much for meals

5 0 355
11.07.2018

You know what’s funny? Hearing people say a HK$200 (US$25) plate of ravioli is reasonably priced at a fine-dining Italian ristorante in Hong Kong, while at a local noodle joint they howl that it’s grand larceny if a bowl of wonton costs more than HK$50.

Think about it: they are similar foods using similar ingredients. The Italians might use expensive cheese or parma ham, but good-quality shrimps used for wonton are not cheap, either. Even if you argue the food costs in the premium ravioli are higher, is one pasta worth four bowls of soup dumplings?

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The economics of gastronomy has its own weird caste system. People think that certain dishes have to be inexpensive to be authentic and valued, while also believing that Old World cuisines should cost an arm and a leg, even if the main course consists of a grilled chicken breast.

The bearded and tattooed expat chef might argue: “Oh but our poultry is organic, raised on black truffles, bred on an estate once owned by the Marquis de Lyon and we can trace the hen’s lineage back two centuries.”

Does that make........

© South China Morning Post