To be honest, this isn't a highly unusual conversation with Jez, but his latest experience of Hong Kong cuisine seems to have further increased his excitement for oriental food. And anyone who's had a lesson with him before will know that's an excitement level difficult to imagine.

"Hong Kong has always been an amazing place for new food," he explains. "But the last 2 or 3 times I've been there, most of the new restaurants and innovations have been in Western restaurants. This time it was a delight to see the Chinese chefs 'moving with the cheese' too."

The cheese is of course metaphorical (the Chinese diet typically involves very little dairy produce), but what Jez has noticed is that there's an increased focus on using really fresh ingredients and working to bring the best out of those ingredients, instead of overpowering dishes with sauces. The bigger restaurants have ditched greasy dishes in favour for more 'real' food - fresh spinach stir-fried in a salted duck egg, preserved egg and roasted garlic broth, king prawns deep fried in a salted egg yolk batter... Hotel buffets have also upped the quality ante since Jez's last visit, with the impetus not so much on keeping the food lukewarm for hours on end, but on simplicity and freshness. Chefs will cook your selection in front of you at every possible opportunity, and fresh noodle buffets are hugely popular. The Marriott Hong Kong boasts a buffet where you select your own noodles, vegetables, meats, wontons and seafood, followed by your choice of stock flavour (thai curry, prawn, fish, chicken, beef or vegetable). Your plate will be freshly cooked in a maximum of 2-3 minutes, leaving you ready to add your own selection of chilli sauces, condiments and garnishes before chowing down (and going back for more…). Now back in London, Jez is fired up and full of new ideas. If you fancy bringing an authentic taste of Hong Kong to your kitchen, book up an experimental lesson with Jez and get an insight into the newest food trends from the Pearl of the Orient. Trust us - his enthusiasm is catching.{jcomments on}