A snack shop called Mr Bing just opened in Hong Kong and several of my friends from Beijing are outraged the place is (apparently) selling jianbing — described above as “Beijing street crepes” — for rmb48. The company’s website lists no menu or prices at the moment.
I could see a jianbing costing rmb48 if it were made from fresh organic ingredients in a venue with a top-notch decor in a high-rent district.
But that wouldn’t be — as the website puts it — an “authentic” Beijing “street” crepe, which in my experience is usually made on a corner using batter reminiscent of watery concrete (in the right light), mystery meat (that may or may not contain meat), greens that look like they went through a paper-shredder, and other items that, when combined, are very tasty. And that only costs a few kuai.
The ones in Hong Kong? It looks like Mr Bing is making something authentic in this Youtube video, although the husband and wife team at my local put far more care into production. And this photo shows that the digs are far from five-star. Thus, at this point, it looks like Hong Kong is getting somewhat authentic jianbing at rather inauthentic prices.* If any of my Hong Kong friends stop in at this place, please let me know what you think.
* Then again, I paid rmb40 the other night for a modestly sized lamb pie topped with a scoop of mashed potatoes and gravy.