Kat O Seafood Restaurant
Kat O Main St, Kat O Island School Picnic Day in Hong Kong is usually an unruly exercise. Bus loads of students trundle out to a crowded country park to burn a few fish balls and chicken wings on a BBQ before boredom and delinquency takes over. Thankfully the Form Four students at my school had a very different plan this year. We bussed to Ma On Shan from where we left on a day's nautical excursion. The boat we chartered took us out to Double Haven or Yan Chau Tong; the land of fisherman and pirates. We walked around tiny Ap Chau, visited Tin Hau Temple, explored the Yan Chau Tong Mangrove forest and wandered the deserted streets of Lai Chi Wo.
Kat O or Crooked Island is an island in the far north-east of the New Territories, much closer to Shenzhen than Sha Tin. A traditional home of the Hakka it is now relatively quiet, but a few residents scrap together a living through fishing, tourism and fish farming. Lunch was served at the Island's only restaurant, a place right near the ferry pier. The teachers were banished outside by the hungry hordes and we had a pleasant lunch under the trees. The fixed menu is all there is and we got plates piled with fried prawns, sautéed squid, chicken, green vegetable, a whole steamed fish, broccoli with pork, baked egg, pork short ribs and congee. The chicken was good, the prawns had a great meaty flavour and the squid tender and succulent; just what you expect from a restaurant run by fisher folk.
While it was certainly wasn't fancy lunch on Kat O was superb. The food was classic Chinese fare served in an absolutely cracker of a location. Kat O and Yan Chau Tong are a long way from Yuen Long, but well, well worth the trek. Exploring this area by sea is a great way to enjoy this beautiful, isolated and relatively untouched part of Hong Kong. Who knew school picnic could be such fun?