People at Vinexpo enjoying a bite to eat and a drink in a "bing sutt"
A large wine and spirits fair called Vinexpo is on right now in Hong Kong. It's a three-day event for people in the industry -- for wine producers to showcase their latest products, and for wholesalers, restaurants and hotels to see what will fit on their wine lists.
The show is being held at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre and just outside the hall is a temporary "bing sutt" -- literally an "ice room", but is actually a traditional cold drinking house. They are the predecessor to the cha chaan teng, with its small tiled floors, hanging fans and folding chairs and menu items plastered on the walls.
Here the Hong Kong Tourism Board recreated one -- and it's a neat way to showcase local food culture for visitors overseas. They can have milk tea, a pineapple bun and a bowl of wonton noodles without having to go outside and deal with language issue.
The only fault here? The line was too long to even get a bite to eat -- which is the point of a bing sutt -- to be able to grab a quick snack and drink. That's because inside the exhibition hall there was no cafeteria to be found to buy a sandwich or even drinks.
When I was here yesterday I didn't have time (or the patience) to wait in line so I ate the power bar I happened to have with me and didn't eat some dumplings until I got back to the office at 4.30pm.
Maybe if I go early enough tomorrow I can finally try something in this "bing sutt"...