My Online Shopping Spree

I’ve been thinking about writing this post for a couple of weeks, and as a result have gone a bit crazy with shopping online. And before you make any assumptions, no I have not been splashing the cash on Net-a-Porter. Being able to try clothes on, having the satisfaction of walking out of the store with my shopping bag, and rushing home to try things on straight away again are all an integral and important part of the process for me.

But food shopping is a different thing. There are so many seafood and meat items that you simply cannot buy in supermarkets here, unless you want to pay an arm and a leg for them. With a little bit of forward planning, you can have choice cuts on your dinner plate at a fraction of the cost. So yes! I have been a very good customer of online food purveyors this week.

I received my first basket from Homegrown Foods yesterday, and am very excited! They have established relationships with local Hong Kong farmers growing organic vegetables and fruits in a sustainable manner. The benefits of local organic produce over imported are numerous: it’s seasonal, more nutritious, and leaves less of a carbon footprint.

All the items in my 4.5kg preselected box from Homegrown Foods

I also love that through them, I am supporting local farmers, who according to the website (there’s a little section introducing each farm they are in partnership with) have a real passion for cleaner and healthier lifestyles for themselves – which translates into the produce they grow.

I’m excited to try a new recipe with the okra, tomatoes, potatoes and red onions in my box. I’ve never even tasted a fresh guava before – talk about broadening horizons! At $338 for a 4.5kg preselected trial box, why not? Yes, it is a bit pricey, but it reflects the real cost of producing food, and I’m willing to try it at least once. Prices are discounted if you have a regular weekly order, and you can also build your own box.

I’m excited to try a new recipe with the okra, tomatoes, potatoes and red onions in my box. I’ve never even tasted a fresh guava before – talk about broadening horizons! At $338 for a 4.5kg preselected trial box, why not? Yes, it is a bit pricey, but it reflects the real cost of producing food, and I’m willing to try it at least once. Prices are discounted if you have a regular weekly order, and you can also build your own box.

Pacific Gourmet

Their city stores are well-located on Caine Road and in Happy Valley (with another in Horizon Plaza), but you can’t beat their website for convenience. With free next day delivery (on orders before 2pm) on Hong Kong side if you spend over $500,  the slightly better prices make this my go-to website for good quality, variety, and well priced meat. I also once had 2 extra last minute guests at a dinner party once – I called them to see if I could add onto my order and they were very obliging!

Meatmarket

I haven’t tried this site yet. Delivery is free if you spend over $500, and they offer same day delivery if your order is submitted before 12pm, next day if before 4pm.

You’ll like this website if you’re looking for:

Ingredients for a last minute meal tonight
Products conveniently packaged in one or two servings
Or  whole 6kg slabs of meat for large parties
Authentic Aussie meat pies
Rental of a 4 gas burner BBQ (though a bit pricey at $1700 each time)
A BBQ chef service

Tenderloin Fine Foods

The first online provider that I ever used, this website has some items that the others don’t have, such as caviar, pork neck, Argentine grass-fed beef, venison, and a large selection of veal cuts.

South Stream Seafoods

I’ve just placed my order for delivery on Friday. You know that everything is fresh from this website because their Online Store literally opens it’s “doors” at noon on Saturdays and Wednesdays for delivery only on Tuesdays and Fridays. If you sign up on their website, they’ll send you an email as soon as they’re open for orders, which are on a first come first serve basis. If the run out, then tough luck. As soon as I received the email, like an Apple fiend camping outside the new IFC store, I went straight onto the website and placed my order for fresh salmon, coral trout, fresh veal shank for Osso Bucco, and frozen NZ steak pies (nice snack for my bro). Frozen goods are also available, but why bother when the fresh goods  just cost a little bit more.

They sell special cuts for babies, live shellfish, gluten free products, organic household cleaning products, and pet food. They also have a sense of humour – check out their FAQ Page.

Monsieur Chatté

A wonderful store selling French produce, with shop fronts in Bonham Strand and Elements Mall. My personal cheese favorites are the Pyrenees Brebis (crazily flavorful but mild and creamy at the same time, and I can’t explain why, I just can’t stop eating it!), the Cantal (after trying this, I’ve never eaten cheddar again! It’s a great cheese for any occasion!) and the Buchette de Banon (a very flavorful goats cheese). They also make homemade fois gras and Galette des Rois – a cake traditionally eaten during the Christian feast day Epiphany, but really can be eaten during any celebration. It has two trinkets (in this case, small plastic crowns) baked into it – whoever has the crowns in their slice of cake are kings for the day! Eat with caution 😉

La Rose Noire

I really love this company for providing really tasty, freshly baked bread and pastries  (the pain au chocolat is very authentic!) at my local Wellcome on Robinson Road, and other locations. They have a cake catalogue online so that must mean that you can order cakes from them. I’ve already sent them an email to find out, and will let you know! I’ve already tried the Galettes des Rois from them at someone’s birthday party, and it was outstanding!

Bon Vivant Organics

This website sells organic grains, pulses, pastas, sauces and oils produced in Italy and Switzerland. Free next day delivery (orders placed before 12pm) for orders above $600.

Aussie Organics

This website specialises in Australian organic fruit and veg, as well as Gluten Free Products – you can choose from their gluten-free basics pack or put together a tailored pack. Prices are listed in AUD, so I’m not sure how that works.

And finally, you can shop online at both Park ‘N Shop and Wellcome supermarkets. I’d never order fresh produce in this manner, but for bulk orders of home necessities it’s a great service – you can view all of their products on the websites and compile your shopping list for next day delivery.

Oliver’s has a delivery concierge service if you give them a shopping list – you will need to know exactly what you want however, as they don’t have product listings on their website. City’Super and GrEAT both have home delivery service but only for items bought in store.

I’ll also take this opportunity to let you know that GrEAT has an AWESOME catering service, inquire at the Deli Counter. They can deliver the food on decorative plates, and will collect them the next day.

 

Online Wine & Spirits:

Watsons Wine:  A great selection of wines online with free next day delivery on orders above $1200 and discounts on mixed cases of 6 or 12 bottles. You can also earn double Asia Miles from now until 31st December if using American Express.

Soho Wines and Spirits: You can choose from items on their website with free delivery on purchases over $500. A word of caution – check the prices. I bought a bottle of Patron Cafe from here once at $890, and was horrified to find out that it’s sold in Olivers for $490. The also provide glass rental for parties.

Ponti Wine Cellars: The only provide online wine lists for their promotion wines, and can organise home deliveries if you contact your nearest store. You can also earn Asia Miles if you shop at their store (I’m a sucker for Asia Miles!)

What is the most pointless online store I’ve come across? We Shop Britain for You. Do you really miss Walkers crisps that much? And why would you have Fairy Liquid or 7Up shipped halfway across the world? I appreciate the idea behind it, as there’s many things I miss from the UK, but there’s definitely still a gap in the market for a decent online English produce store!

If you can’t be a*sed to surf ‘n cook, and for the sake of well-roundedness (even though everyone probably has one of these on speed dial!), here are direct links to takeout food delivery services as well. Hope this is all helpful!

Food By Fone

Meals on Wheels

Cuisine Courier

Dial a Dinner

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