We visited renowned Asian restaurant Henry Wong in Harborne & the food is a must-try

Henry Wong in Harborne recently celebrated the Mid-Autumn Festival after a change in management
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Henry Wong is an institution that has been around for more than 35 years in Harborne and is perfect for those seeking Cantonese cuisine in the city. Located on Harborne High Street, it was recently taken over by entrepreneurs Zi Wen Boo and Jeremy Bun, and the iconic restaurant has a new executive chef Tuck Weng Lee.

The restaurant recently celebrated the Mid-Autumn Festival, also known as the Moon Festival or Mooncake Festival, an important harvest festival celebrated in Asian cultures. Held on the 15th day of the 8th month of the Chinese lunisolar calendar, in 2023, it fell on September 29.

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Zi said: “Our Mid-Autumn festival was an evening of celebration and we were delighted to welcome familiar faces as well as introduce new guests to the restaurant for the first time. The Mid Autumn moon is said to be at it's brightest and fullest symbolising family reunion. Celebrating this festival is one of my happiest childhood memories - all the family would gather together to walk around the streets with lanterns to wish each other good health and fortune."

(L to R) Jeremy Munn, Zen Wi Boo & Chef Tuck Weng Lee(L to R) Jeremy Munn, Zen Wi Boo & Chef Tuck Weng Lee
(L to R) Jeremy Munn, Zen Wi Boo & Chef Tuck Weng Lee

We recently visited the restaurant for their Mid-Autumn Festival celebration and got a glimpse of what the new team has to offer.

Right as we entered the restaurant, we were welcomed by an open space with some tables, a bar and lovely decorations for the harvest festival. After a welcome drink of Tom Collins cocktails and Red Bean Mooncake, we were seated on a large round table - where the food never stopped coming.

Malaysia-born Chinese Chef Lee pulled out all the stops for the incredible dinner that began with Pork Yuk Sung (Chinese lettuce wraps) and Sesame Prawn Toast. The presentation for the Pork Yuk Sung was an interesting one where we were first served with a lettuce leaf shaped like a bowl into which went the pork filling.

Henry Wong, HarborneHenry Wong, Harborne
Henry Wong, Harborne
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A perfect mix of savoury and crunchy, the lettuce wrap and the prawn toast were only the start. The starters were coupled with Chinese Jade Dove White Wine - a Chinese wine exclusive to Henry Wong in West Midlands. It tasted similar to prosecco making it light and bubbly.

When the mains arrived, we felt like Asian royalty because the list was endless. From different prawns dishes to duck, pork, chicken and veggies - there was something for everyone.

Mooncake Mooncake

Along with Henry Wong signature dishes of Honey Pepper King Prawns and Aromatic Crispy Duck with Pancakes, they also served new dishes on their Christmas Menu such as House Roasted Crispy Pork Belly, Beef Briskets and Pumpkin Curry, Sweet & Sour Chinese Fried Dough Stuffed with Prawns. The house special chicken and pumpkin curry and the house roasted crispy pork belly stood out for me - the first because of its complex flavours and the second because it was the perfect balance of crispy and juicy.

The mains were served on a revolving centre piece so people could easily share the meal - which was served with egg fried rice. Along with the mains, there was the Chinese Jade Dove Red Wine which went well with the meaty meal.

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About the menu, new owner Jeremy said: "We also have main menus full of seafood, poultry, meat and vegetarian dishes to choose from, as well as Gluten Free options. On the night we also raised funds for charity, Love Brum, thanks to the generosity of those who joined us. We are very grateful for everyone who came and supported us."

Calligraphy and Mid Autumn FestivalCalligraphy and Mid Autumn Festival
Calligraphy and Mid Autumn Festival

At the end of the night, the team performed a Chinese calligraphy demonstration and gave away lantern gifts marking the year of the rabbit for the 60 guests.

I picked the talisman that said peace and entrepreneur Zi swiftly created a new one for me using her beautiful calligraphy brushes and ink. The talisman was then stuck to the small wicker lantern - which has a tiny toy rabbit as decoration. The small but special gesture went a long way with me and other guests.

The stylish Chinese restaurant is a must-visit for those who love Cantonese cuisine and this 35-year-old restaurant has stood the test of time in the dynamic hospitality scene of Birmingham. It is a great place for a casual dinner with friends and family in the upmarket neighbourhood of Harborne - which has recently welcomed several new restaurants but also said goodbye to a few. To book, visit the Henry Wong website.

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