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Yu Kwen Yick Chili sauce - Hong Kong

  • j
  • JMFLD Nov 10, 2011 09:27 AM
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It appears that this great sauce isn't exported to the US.

Does anyone know what the ingredients are for this great sauce , or does anyone know of a source to get this stuff to the states?

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  1. Readily available in large Chinese supermarkets in Toronto. You can plan a trip from Chicago ( assume that's where you are from, from your postings?! ) to Toronto for some great Cantonese food and then bring back home a few bottles!!

    1 Reply
    1. re: Charles Yu

      How much is a bottle of it in Toronto?

    2. Could you use one of the many Indonesian or Malaysian (or even Vietnamese) chili sauces [Probably not Lingham's, though] as an approximation or a place to start from then add stuff to it? (rice vinegar or fresh lime juice, fresh grated ginger and/or garlic if needed, etc)

      If you like, you can get it directly from them now: http://hthfoodonline.com/progenmerchl...
      Note the shipping charges: http://hthfoodonline.com/delivery.html

      1 Reply
      1. re: huiray

        Sorry, I meant you can get it from them via this supplier now...

      2. I need to get to Toronto, but I'm not heading there for the next few months. It's cold enough in Chicago, so Toronto is out until spring. Though, if the stuff is in Canada, I'm thinking there has to be some source here in the states. I could be wrong.

        I can get my hands on plenty of substitutes but this one is so mild and unique. From what I remember, it's a sweet potato based sauce.

        1. I'm going to hold off on thought of traveling to Toronto until spring. It's too cold in Chicago now, so the thought of heading north is scary.
          Though, I'm thinking if it's in Canada it should be in the states.

          Substitutes are readily available but this sauce it very subtle and unique. I believe it is sweet potato based.

          1. Old thread, but I actually visited and purchase directly from the Sai Ying Poon store of Yu Kwen Yick and can comment on the following

            - The shop has never exported directly to a distributor overseas to sell. This sauce isn't exported period. Any shops that sell them in Toronto did so via individuals buying multiple bottles and bringing them from HK to Canada, or bottles were purchased locally and snail mailed over (air or sea). This comes directly from the family I spoke with at length during my two visits to the shop in December/January.

            - The ingredients listed on the bottle read: vinegar, sweet potatoes, chili, salt sugar, peanut oil, garlic. No preservatives, and if unopened a bottle is good for up to a year from date of purchase (approximately).

            1. KK thanks for your update on that sauce. We've been to Hong Kong twice last year and have yet to find that brand.

              On the last trip we brought home several bottles of Koon Yick Wah Kee sauce. Ingredients: Vinegar, red chili, Sweet potato, Sugar, Salt, Garlic, Flavor enhancer and preservative. We love this sauce but would probably prefer the other brand w/o preservatives.

              Have you tried both? How do they compare in taste?

              9 Replies
              1. re: rosepoint

                I personally have not tried other brands, but YKY is hard to top, they've been around since 1922 and the flavor is really smooth....the sauce is basically not very spicy, but has a mild sweet and sour roundness to it that enhances the flavor of many dishes.

                Getting to YKY store is easy, just take the tram on the westbound line towards Kennedy Town and get off Eastern Street station. Walk up Eastern Street, up hill about 2 to 3 blocks, turn right on 2nd street and you will see the store. They are closed Mondays, and call before going just to make sure they are open (I have called on a Tuesday earlier this month and nobody answered).

                There are a few independent grocery shops scattered across Tuen Mun, Yuen Long, and Kowloon City that sell YKY chili sauce, but they are exceptions (and authorized resellers by YKY). There are also a few restaurants that exclusively carry the bottle for use within....Lau Sam Kee noodles in Sham Shui Po comes to mind. Tim Ho Wan and Ho Hung Kee did before, don't know about now.

                1. re: K K

                  Thank you so much for those directions. We may be passing through Hong Kong again this year and I will take your directions with us. If all else fails we always go shopping in Sham Shui Po so Lau Sam Kee noodles may be our spot to find YKY.

                  1. re: rosepoint

                    Lau Sam Kee actually has both YKY and another brand called Yuet Wo Sauce on their tables. There are locals who think YKY is a bit on the softer/more watery like consistency and prefer something thicker, which is why LSK has both so customers and pick/choose or compare. Never tried Yuet Wo, simply because YKY was on the table :-) for us to use.

                    1. re: K K

                      guess I gotta hit up my HK friends to send some bottles over...

                  2. re: K K

                    So my buddy in HK is willing to ship some over. Is there a particular "type" or does this brand only have 1 kind of sauce??

                    1. re: ns1

                      ns1, YKY's flagship product is their orange chili sauce, stone grounded and made the old fashioned way. There should be three sizes....one small personal sized bottle (maybe the size of a small bottle of Tobasco), the classic size approximately close to a bottle of Ito-En tea, and the large bottle that might be close to a big bottle of distilled water in HK. They are all made of glass so make sure your buddy packs them tightly and snug with a lot of protection/bubble wrap/packaging peanuts to prevent breakage.

                      YKY sells a few other sauces....they have circular small jars of a fermented bean based chili sauce, chili oil, chili oil with chili flakes. The standard/medium bottle runs $35 (cash only), they were sold out of the small and big bottles during my visit and since it is past Chinese New Year, inventory can be in flux. You can also have your friend get a gift box, which are two standard sized bottles plus a jar of bean paste. I can't remember how much they were but maybe $120 to $150 per box.

                      1. re: K K

                        HOLY CHILI SAUCE. For $120-150/box (or $35 for a medium jar...) it better be the second coming of christ

                        1. re: ns1

                          In HK dollars, 1USD = 7.78 HKD...

                          1. re: K K

                            oh, you were using $ as a replacement for HKD and not USD. That changes EVERYTHING.