Summer is just around the corner with all its junk trips, beach days, pool parties, but your perfect summer body is about to be challenged by the temptations at American import The Cheesecake Factory, set to open its first Hong Kong outpost next week.
If you grew up in the States or have spent a significant amount of time there, you might already be familiar with The Cheesecake Factory. For the uninitiated, this restaurant chain is known for its enormous menus (over 250 items made fresh daily), Vegas-esque gold-columned interiors, peppy service, and absurdly large portion sizes (some exceeding an adult’s single recommended calorific intake for the day).
With all that in mind, it’s perhaps unsurprising that The Cheesecake Factory is unofficially America’s favourite casual sit-down restaurant. But how will it fare in Hong Kong?
With 30 delicious varieties of cheesecake available every day, we suspect Hongkongers will be chomping at the bit to get a taste of this American institution. The whopping 700-calorie dessert has been perfected over the years inside The Cheesecake Factory’s kitchen, with wacky flavours ranging from Chocolate Hazelnut Crunch to Lemon Meringue and Peanut Butter Cup Fudge Ripple. There’s something for every sweets lover, but we’d suggest keeping it simple and trying the Original — luscious, creamy cheesecake perfection with a graham-cracker crust, topped with either a layer of thin sour cream, or fresh strawberries and a cloud of whipped cream.
Meanwhile, the menu offers more variety than you could imagine: There are samosas, crispy Cuban rolls, chicken taquitos, sausage and ricotta flatbread, truffle-bacon grilled cheese sticks, and Thai lettuce wraps — and those are just the appetisers. From there, get ready to slip into a food coma with giant-sized platters of spaghetti and meatballs, shrimp and chicken gumbo, eggplant parmesan, chicken enchiladas, or chargrilled steaks, salmon, and burgers. All dishes are made from scratch daily in an effort to use fresh ingredients.
Other than the stomach-bursting portions, it’s the details that we’re most excited to see if The Cheesecake Factory in Hong Kong can recreate, from the bubbly hospitality down to the aroma of fresh-baked sourdough and molasses bread that’s brought warm to your table as soon as you settle in to the oversized booths.
The Cheesecake Factory won’t be winning any Michelin stars or reinventing the culinary wheel anytime soon, but with healthy eating and vegetable dishes touted as the big food trends for 2017, you might not mind taking a mini break from the influx of kale and kombucha, superfoods and salads. This little slice of Americana may have arrived just in time.
The Cheesecake Factory opens on 1 May 2017.
The Cheesecake Factory, Shop G102, G/F, Harbour City Gateway Arcade, 25 Canton Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon, Hong Kong, +852 2791 6628