Devotees of other cuisines from around Asia will find much to explore and enjoy in Hong Kong.
Hong Kong’s Indian community has a long history here, and you can find several well-established Indian restaurants without having to look too hard. Some popular Indian restaurants include:
Feeling adventurous? Explore the sprawling, world-famous Chungking Mansions in Tsim Sha Tsui, where a variety of hole-in-the-wall joints (some unlicensed) serve up dishes from the Indian subcontinent and beyond.
Indonesian, Malaysian and Singaporean
If you developed a taste for nasi campur or char kway teow on your last trip to Bali or Penang, you’re in luck: Hong Kong has a number of restaurants where you can get your fix of spice-filled, aromatic dishes from around southeast Asia.
Japan is a top travel destination for Hong Kongers, who subsequently have high standards when it comes to Japanese cuisine. You can find everything from jet-fresh sushi to top-grade yakiniku to modern takes on Japanese food that transcend the “fusion” label.
Hong Kong’s Little Korea is concentrated around Kimberley Street in Tsim Sha Tsui. Flavorful options like fried chicken and Korean barbecue are particularly well represented in Hong Kong’s Korean food scene (whose popularity has risen in tandem with that of pop-culture exports like K-pop and Korean television dramas).
Thai, another popular cuisine among locals, offers aromatic, distinctive dishes, rich with fresh coriander, coconut milk, fiery chilies, zesty limes and Asian basil. Kowloon City, known to locals as “Little Thailand” due to its large Thai community, boasts a number of authentic Thai restaurants and produce shops selling ingredients for home cooking. On Hong Kong Island, authentic Thai restaurants and produce shops can mostly be found in Wan Chai.
Vietnamese food, with its distinctive aromatics and lashings of herbs, offers a delicate counterpoint to the richer and more heavily spiced cuisines on this list. Many typical Vietnamese dishes, like pho (wide rice noodles in broth with sliced chicken or beef) and bun cha (grilled pork over chilled rice vermicelli noodles), are light but satisfying, making them the perfect fit for Hong Kong’s steamy summers.
Burgers, salads, steaks and pasta: here’s where Westerners craving an authentic taste of home go to eat.
A lovely English tradition that has lingered in Hong Kong is the afternoon tea. Think freshly baked scones, finger sandwiches, and homemade cakes and pastries served alongside your choice of tea. Historically served at the older Hong Kong hotels, afternoon tea has become a trendy pastime among locals in recent years, and you will find some version of the experience offered at most modern hotels and cafés as well. But if you only have it once, make a beeline for the Peninsula Hotel, widely regarded as the most iconic and opulent afternoon tea experience in the city.
Americans missing a taste of home will be impressed with the range and quality of American dining establishments in Hong Kong. In addition to the establishments listed below, beloved chains like The Cheesecake Factory, Outback Steakhouse, Red Lobster and Ruby Tuesday all have branches in Hong Kong.
The standards for hamburgers in Hong Kong have risen markedly in recent years. Here are some tried-and-true favorites.
- Beef & Liberty (Locations in Central, Sheung Wan, Wong Chuk Hang and Stanley)
- Burger Circus (Central)
- Burger Joys (Locations in Wan Chai, Sai Ying Pun and Central)
- The Butchers Club Burger (Locations in Wan Chai, Tsim Sha Tsui and Quarry Bay)
- Honbo (Locations in Wan Chai and Tsuen Wan)
- Shake Shack (Locations across Hong Kong)
For burger lovers looking to cut down on their meat consumption, Hong Kong was one of the first places outside of the United States where consumers could buy the heavily-buzzed-about plant-based burgers manufactured by Impossible Foods and Beyond Meat. Beef & Liberty and The Butchers Club Burger were notably early adopters in adding the products to their menus.
Western-style artisan bread was long absent from the Hong Kong larder, but it’s recently become much easier to find crusty sourdoughs, authentic baguettes and even New York-style bagels for your homemade sandwiches and weekend picnics.
Expatriates living in Hong Kong take their weekend brunches seriously. On any given Saturday or Sunday, you will see couples, families and groups of friends camped out at various brunch spots catching up on the latest happenings. This much-loved social event takes place over platefuls of hearty breakfast foods and often, copious amounts of booze. Brunch can be a formal or informal affair depending on the occasion and budget. Ranging from five-star hotels to hipster neighborhood cafés, here are a few venues to try:
- British breakfast classics at Brick Lane (Locations in Admiralty, Causeway Bay, Tsim Sha Tsui and Sha Tin)
- Trendy, Melbourne-style brunch at Catch (Kennedy Town)
- Fancy food and five-star views at Ozone Bar & Lounge (West Kowloon)
- Unlimited dim sum and bubbly at Duddell’s (Central)
- Unconventional pasta brunch at Pici (Locations across Hong Kong)
- Spanish-style brunch complete with tapas and free-flow sangria at The Optimist (Wan Chai)
- Contemporary Japanese delights and free-flow champagne at Zuma (Central)
Coffee consumption in Hong Kong is on the rise; the proof is in the proliferation of global café chains and independent coffee roasters all over the city.
In addition to the ubiquitous Starbucks and Pacific Coffee (Hong Kong’s answer to Starbucks), here are a few popular coffee chains and shops with a more artisanal bent. All have multiple locations around Hong Kong.
Aficionados of home brewed coffee will be spoiled for choice in Hong Kong. Beans and ground coffee from all over the world can be bought in most supermarkets, specialty food stores and coffee shops – many of which also sell coffee making paraphernalia, from ordinary filter papers to sophisticated Italian espresso makers. Nespresso has showrooms in IFC and ELEMENTS, selling machines for the home and boxes of their premium coffee capsules.
No less an authority than the Michelin Guide states that some of the best Italian restaurants outside of Italy are in Hong Kong. This isn’t a surprise. Italian dining has been a favorite for locals as well as for visiting guests and expatriate residents. All price ranges and atmospheres, from casual to premium dining, are found in the many Italian restaurants in Hong Kong.
Notable Italian restaurants include:
Once the mood strikes, pizza is the only thing that will satisfy. Whether you like yours thin and crispy, or thick and chewy, you will be able to find it in Hong Kong. A word of caution: not all pizzas come with the traditional Italian or American toppings, and many places have localized their menus to suit local tastes. Expect to find all sorts of exotic pizza toppings on offer here, from corn and tuna with a mayonnaise base, to chicken and peach with honey relish sauce.
Organic, Vegetarian and Vegan
Organic, vegetarian and vegan food has come a long way in the past few years, as both locals and expats have shifted toward a preference for sustainably produced “clean” eating. Nowadays you can even find plant-based luncheon meat at McDonald’s in Hong Kong! Here are a few prominent vegetarian and vegan restaurants, cafes and bakeries.
- The Cakery (Locations in Central and Causeway Bay)
- Chi Lin Vegetarian (Diamond Hill) (Chinese website only)
- Green Common (Locations across Hong Kong)
- MANA! Fast Slow Food (Locations in Central and Wan Chai)
- Pop Vegan (Central)
- Pure Veggie House (Tsim Sha Tsui)
- Treehouse (Central)
- Soil to Soul (Tsim Sha Tsui)
- Veda (Central)
Salads and Healthy Food
For salads, grain bowls and other light fare, try the following:
Cap off your meal with an exquisite sweet treat from one of Hong Kong’s finest bakeries or gelaterias.
Patisseries and Bakeries
Hong Kong people are passionate about pastries and cakes and find reasons to buy them for almost any occasion. For instance, it is not uncommon for an office worker to buy a box of cakes from their favorite patisserie on a Friday just to celebrate the start of the weekend. For special occasions such as birthdays and anniversaries, custom-made cakes can be ordered from various hotel pastry kitchens, specialist bakery chains and European patisseries. All of the following, except where noted, have multiple locations around Hong Kong.
From Igloo Dessert Bar’s egg custard mooncake gelato to Oddies Foodies’ egg waffle parfaits to Via Tokyo’s matcha soft serve, frozen desserts in Hong Kong are anything but boring.
From the classic to the quirky, here are a few of our favorites:
- Emack & Bolio’s (Locations in Central and Wan Chai)
- Gino’s Gelato (Locations in Stanley and the Peak)
- Igloo Dessert Bar (Central)
- Oddies Foodies (Sheung Wan)
- Venchi (Locations across Hong Kong)
- Via Tokyo (Causeway Bay)
- XTC Gelato (Locations in Central, Causeway Bay and Tsim Sha Tsui
- Yo Mama (Locations in Central, Causeway Bay and Quarry Bay)