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Hong Kong is a world-class gourmet destination, offering everything from top-end seafood in swanky restaurants to homemade noodles in neighbourhood eateries. Here are six startlingly varied ways to indulge in Hong Kong cuisine – and get your taste buds tingling in advance of borders reopening.
Lau Sum Kee
A taste of the noodles on offer at Lau Sum Kee. Photo: Hong Kong Tourism.
Tasty noodles are a temptation everywhere in Hong Kong, but few are made in the traditional way anymore, in which the noodle-maker "rides" a bamboo pole like a seesaw, bouncing up and down to knead the dough into thin sheets that produce springy noodles. Tuck into wonton noodles, the city's original cheap eat and now a bowlful of nostalgia to Hong Kong residents. The broth is delicious, the wontons plump, the noodles filling. Add shrimp roe for an extra pop of flavour, and a side of pickled radish.
48 Kweilin Street, Sham Shui Po.
Lin Heung Tea House
Lin Heung Tea House is a must for a taste of classic dumplings. Photo: Discover Hong Kong.
Enjoy classic Hong Kong steamed and stuffed dumplings. Photo: Getty.
You haven't done Hong Kong until you've done dim sum, the mid-morning meal that stretches into an afternoon of raucous conversation. The trolleys wobbling past your table in this agreeably old-fashioned restaurant have been offering varied small dishes for over 90 years. Look out for Hong Kong's classic steamed and stuffed dumplings such as har gow (shrimp), siu mai (pork) and cha siu bao (caramelised barbecued pork), which you might say is Hong Kong's signature dish. The eight-treasures duck is also a taste sensation.
160-164 Wellington Street, Central.
Kam's Roast Goose
A modest eatery that serves a southern Chinese specialty. The goose is juicy, the skin crispy and the meat leaner than normal. Noodles tossed in goose fat are deliciously decadent. Adventurous eaters should try the goose-liver sausages and goose-blood pudding. The restaurant also serves other Cantonese-style barbecued meats such as suckling pork.
Relax and be transported to a different time at Mido Café. Photo: Hong Kong Tourism.
Enjoy a unique blend of Chinese and Western influences. Photo: Getty.
The cha chaan teng or Hong Kong-style café is another institution of the city's dining scene. These unpretentious local venues offer coffee, tea and wide-ranging menu items that show a unique blend of Chinese and Western influences, such as pork chops with noodles, curries, French toast and, of course, the legendary custard tart. Mido Café is a classic, retaining its 1950s interior and iconic neon sign. Dig into baked spareribs with rice and follow it with red-bean ice for a vintage flavour journey.
63 Temple St, Yau Ma Tei.
Yan Toh Heen
Hong Kong has some of the world's best upmarket dining and, unlike in Australia, many top restaurants are found at luxury hotels. Case in point this restaurant, which showcases the delicacy, elegance, quality ingredients and varied cooking methods of top-flight Cantonese cuisine from veteran executive chef Lau Yiu Fai. Think abalone and black chicken soup, lobster dumplings with truffle, stewed crab claw in XO sauce, and crispy tofu sheets with mushrooms. It's also your chance to try posh desserts based around rice dumplings.
Keen to look beyond the classic Cantonese repertoire? Then energise your taste buds at the novel restaurant of tattooed chef Alvin Leung, who thrills and challenges Hong Kong with his "extreme Chinese" molecular cuisine. The tasting menu (there's no à la carte) is a deliciously whacky culinary adventure, including Leung's flavoursome take on traditional xiao long bao dumplings, hand-crafted noodles with prawns and dried shrimp, and butter-poached abalone. His pushing of traditional culinary boundaries has bagged him two Michelin stars.
Eat, drink, play and discover it all in Hong Kong. This city has so many unique and authentic experiences to offer for your first post pandemic holiday. To stay inspired visit Discover Hong Kong.