The friends said, "Let's go queue up to yum cha at a chaa chan teng (茶餐厅)!" This is a joint frequented by expats and locals alike. The friends swore it was authentic. Since they're Hong Kongers, I took their word for it. The moment I stepped into Cha's Restaurant (查餐厅- the owner's surname is 查. Word play.), it was already authentic- the noise, the queue, the floor tiles, etc. My last visit to one in Hong Kong was nostalgic. This version in Shanghai, although done up by the Hong Kong owner, doesn't feel so vintage or authentic, but so long the food's okay, it works for me.
I liked my fried omelette (香煎芙蓉蛋) and the milk tea. There was a tasty but damn oily quintessentially Cantonese-style fried dace fish in black bean sauce (豆鼓鲮鱼). The vegetables that came with it were literally drowning in oil. How to eat?! I stared at the plate of fried (crispy skin) intestines (脆皮大肠) in utter amazement. I could smell it from far far away. Looking at the friends' faces of exultation, I could only assume it was somehow, fabulous. The soup of the day was really good, with a fancy name for what was basically a pumpkin soup- 南瓜栗子玉米生鱼. I was pleasantly surprised to find it well boiled and not salty. The friends said that if I wanted soup in Shanghai or Beijing, find a Hong Kong restaurant and it would serve a decent bowl. Everywhere else doesn't quite do it right. I might be able to cook a better pot of soup, seriously. (See Beverly's post for comfort breakfast food!)
After that, we went to check out H & M across the street. Not that I really cared, but I wanted to buy an autumn jacket for the man. He lost his favorite one somewhere and needed a replacement. We couldn't find any that he liked in Singapore; I figured there should be something here since it's the right season. And H & M had it, along with some nice casual shirts! Yay! As usual, there was nothing for me to buy. :)