Header photo: Casa Cacao pop-up at Cupping Room Coffee Roasters, Harbour City
In light of COVID-19, we encourage diners to take precautions when going out. You can also support your favourite restaurants by getting takeaway and delivery.
Aussie Grill by Outback (Central)
Aussie Grill, the fun, fast-casual offshoot of the popular Outback Steakhouse chain, has opened its flagship HK branch in the heart of Central. Good-value burgers are the draws of the food menu, and the bacon bomb burger, pictured above, is the star of the show. We had a taste, and it’s great for those who love sweeter flavours, with both the onion jam and bun imparting a definite sweetness to the oversized patty (note that the jalapeño topper is devoid of any real spice). You can also get your Aussie petals here – a new-and-improved version of Outback’s infamous deep-fried blooming onion. On the ground floor, there are takeaway kiosks that are open from breakfast time. The coffee here is already pulling in the punters; it’s served in edible natural-grain vegan cups that last for up to 14 hours. Open daily, 8am–9pm.
G–1/F, Entertainment Building, 30 Queen’s Road Central, Central, 2399 0309
Baked by Shangri-La pop-up
All these scrumptious baked goods can be yours for the eating at brand-new artisan bakery Baked by Shangri-La, helmed by recently appointed Area Chief Baker Nikolai Murzello, the former head baker at the Mandarin Oriental for eight years. Baked’s home for the next three months is Kowloon Shangri-La, where over 30 house-made pastries and breads are available each day. These include beauties the likes of crème brûlée Berliner doughnuts, marshmallow muffins, glossy, striped harlequin croissants in banana, strawberry and matcha flavours and Japanese curry beef buns. Until the end of the month, Baked has a crazy-good opening offer – buy two of their “hero” items and get the third on the house! Open daily, 8am–9pm.
Lobby, Kowloon Shangri-La, 64 Mody Road, TST East, 2733 8757
Bar De Luxe
Bar De Luxe has fittingly moved from Wyndham Street to H Code with its bevy of Japanese F&B establishments. A partnership with legendary mixologist Hidetsugu Ueno of Bar High Five in Tokyp, Ueno’s protégé Ivin Hui now takes the lead crafting exquisite Ginza-style cocktails in a sleek space. Currently open daily except Monday, 12–6pm.
Between at the HAUS pop-up
Between Coffee proved to be hit shortly after opening last year, but if you don’t have quite enough time to make your way up to Tai Kwun, you have another option smack bang in Central with the shop’s limited-time pop-up at HAUS (the new IWC Schaffhausen x Mercedes-Benz concept store) from Monday, 8 February. There are some pop-up-exclusive food and drink offerings that have us drooling – Kagoshima Wagyu katsu sando and Japanese strawberry parfait if you’re feeling naughty and beetroot soy if you’re not. Open daily except Sunday, 8am–6pm.
Shop 38 & 40, G/F, Manning House, 38–48 Queen’s Road Central, Central
Blue Bottle Coffee (ifc mall)
Cali-cool coffee roaster and café chain Blue Bottle has opened a second HK location in Central following its smash opening last year on Lyndhurst Terrace. This time, they’re taking the lovely open space where ifc mall’s Panino Giusto once stood. Head here for two exclusive items – a Blue Bottle coffee grinder and canned cold-brew coffee – and check out their collabs with local food brands such as Grandma’s Scones. Open daily, 10am–7pm (until 9pm on weekends and public holidays).
Shop 3077C, 3/F, ifc mall, 8 Finance Street, Central
Cabana Breeze Bar & Grill
With no vacays in sight, Cabana Breeze brings the holiday vibe to us with its indoor and al-fresco, Mediterranean-inspired all-day dining and pet-friendly, tiki-esque bar. Looks like quite a cool place just to chill. Open daily from 12pm.
A partnership between Biltong Chief and Blend & Grind (cool portmanteau), Chief’s Blend is a South African-inspired upmarket deli and café featuring HK’s first biltong bar – where premium grass-fed South African beef biltong meets speciality coffee and smoothies. Opening date and times TBC.
17–21 Burrows Street, Wanchai, firstname.lastname@example.org
Cupping Room Coffee Roasters’ Casa Cacao pop-up
For a limited time, the gorgeous new branch of Cupping Room at Harbour City is hosting a pop-up by luxury Spanish chocolatier Casa Cacao. Owned by three-Michelin-starred restaurant El Celler de Can Roca in Girona and run by Pastry Chef Jordi Roca (who was named World’s Best Pastry Chef in 2014), this pop-up offers a range of to-die-for chocolates including bombones (bonbons), available in boxes of 32 assorted pieces, some of which have been crafted to resemble miniature cacao pods, three different bean-to-bar chocolate collections, available in boxes of six and featuring a variety of artisanal 80g bars made from milk or dark chocolate, individual chocolates with varying countries of origin and cacao percentages and – the cherry on top for us – Casa Cacao’s signature oh-so-rich hot chocolate. Open daily from 11am.
Shop OC309, 3/F, Ocean Centre, Harbour City, 3–27 Canton Road, TST, 9446 8699
Da Filippo Trattoria
Pasta and pizza, both traditional and creative, are the name of game at Da Filippo, opened by Michelin-starred chef Andrea Alimenti, who hails from Florence. The pizzas are crafted with a house-made sourdough starter and stone-ground flour imported from Italy that’s fermented for up to 48 hours. Top-quality Italian flour is also used to make the daily fresh pasta dishes, from classic carbonara to lobster tagliatelle. There’s a grab-and-go counter at Da Filippo’s entrance offering sweet and savoury bites to take away including pastries, sarnies and pizzas. Open daily from 8am (from 11am at the weekend).
Shop 3203–3204A, 3/F, Gateway Arcade, Harbour City, 3–27 Canton Road, TST, 2117 1984
DON DON DONKI (Siu Sai Wan)
We’re pretty sure that, in a few years’ time, DONKI will boast a branch in every neighbourhood in Hong Kong. This shop at Island Resort Mall in Siu Sai Wan is the Japanese discount brand’s sixth in the 852. In particular, Hong Kongers can’t seem to get enough of DONKI’s seasonal fruits, fresh fish, hand-rolled sushi and sashimi and meat and deli items. Exclusive to this branch is a “store-in-a-store” showcasing katsudon (fried pork cutlet rice bowl) and gyudon (beef rice bowl). Open daily from Thursday, 4 February, 9am–1am.
Shop 102 &103, 1/F, Island Resort Mall, 28 Siu Sai Wan Road, Siu Sai Wan
Dough Bros (Wanchai)
Hong Kongers can’t seem to get enough of Dough Bros’ sourdough pizzas and freshly filled doughnuts. This will be the fourth location to open in the Kong in just around a year’s time – hot stuff! Opening date and times TBC.
25 Queen’s Road East, Wanchai
ÉPURE x The Old Man pop-up
We can’t wait to check out this collaboration between Chef Nicolas Boutin of Michelin-starred ÉPURE and Nikita Matveev of The Old Man (sitting pretty at number 2 on Asia’s 50 Best Bars list). Each afternoon in ÉPURE’s spacious outdoor lounge, diners can dig into elevated French bar snacks such as crab fritters, croque-monsieur and homemade smoked salmon paired with The Old Man’s Hemingway-inspired innovative cocktails – just take a gander at the clear-as-day A Movable Feast #1964, mixed with seawater, Absolut vodka, tomato juice, coconut syrup and lemon juice. Open daily, 2:30–6pm.
FRITES’ Central branch is moving on in early February to a super-convenient location on Queen’s Road. Get your Belgian steamed mussels and beer here! Open daily from 11:45am.
Bright and airy (love the ceiling fans!) Gochi serves up Japanese-Italian cuisine with an emphasis on freshly made pizza and pasta. Their Wagyu bolognese sounds like just the fusion ticket! Open daily, 11am–6pm.
G/F, Lok Fu Place, 198 Junction Road, Lok Fu, 2662 2969
Grain of Salt
Launched by registered dietician Tiffany Shek, community-driven café Grain of Salt gives us good vibes just thinking about it. This is a one-stop shop for nutritious yet indulgent food and drink on the ground floor alongside nutrition counselling services on the floor above. Healthy eats include avocado toast, made with wholewheat sourdough, shallot and mustard sauce and tamari-roasted almonds, the GOS yoghurt bowl, containing chia seeds, fresh fruit, house-made granola, goji purée and yoghurt made with fermented house-made almond milk, and soup-er veggie dumplings, filled with shiitake mushrooms and tofu and served with a consommé that’s slow-cooked with mushrooms, kombu and cordycep flowers. There’s also a selection of nutrient-dense smoothies and low-caffeine drinks to wet your whistle. Open daily, 8:30am–6pm.
47 Gough Street, Central, 2968 1083
Izakaya by K
Sibling to Teppanyaki Mihara (see below), Izakaya by K has an adorable fox theme inspired by Japan’s Inari shrines, with the fox revered as the messenger of the god Inari himself. In this spirit, inari sushi is a signature here, along with classic-with-a-twist izakaya fare such as Wagyu beef rice, fatty tuna tartare with avocado paste and marinated egg yolk and sliced pork roll-up with soft-boiled egg. Notably, the restaurant manager is also the sake sommelier, working with the chefs on food pairings and introducing diners to hidden gems from Japan’s extensive sake world. Open daily from mid-February from 12pm.
Another izakaya with a "K’’, Kuki has opened in Causeway Bay with a unique focus on MSG-free kushiage, or deep-fried meat, seafood and veg on a stick. It’s named after the Kuki samurai family of yore, and battle-inspired graffiti-style artwork leads the aethestic. We can’t wait to tuck into the koji chicken, pictured above, which is marinated in koji, or fermented rice. Open daily except Sunday from 12pm.
Lady Nara Hong Kong
Lady Nara, the younger, cooler sister of Nara Thai Cuisine in Thailand, is the Bangkok restaurant’s first branch in Hong Kong. The lush eatery, decked out with flowers, plants and even a rattan swing, offers something different from standard green curry and pad thai – Western-style Thai comfort food. This translates to tom yum lobster bisque with garlic toast, roast three-yellow chicken that’s marinated overnight with palm sugar, fish sauce, lime juice, lemongrass and 18 different spices and – the ulimate – Lady Nara nachos, which feature the likes of Thai soy sauce, Thai basil, Thai-style pulled pork, pineapple salsa and beetroot-infused sour cream. Lady Nara’s fusion desserts are particularly tempting (and Instagrammable!), with special shout-outs going to the Thai rose tea lava cake and Thai tea tiramisu. Open daily from 11:30am.
Shop 3303, 3/F, Gateway Arcade, Harbour City, 3–27 Canton Road, TST, 2153 3730
We just got wind of the mysteriously named Park Aura, a new skyscraper in Tin Hau dedicated to food that opened last year, and we couldn’t be more excited. On the ground and first floors, the rock-and-roll Food Loft, pictured above, features 14 F&B outlets that specialise in takeaway food from around the world. A highlight is the Arirang Hot Dog vendor with its “fried evil whisked cheese hot dog”, which has taken the South Korean street-food scene by storm. On the second flooor, Feast Market hosts sales and exhibition events for F&B retailers and distributors. Right now, there’s also a collection of Chinese New Year food items and gift boxes on sale there. And then way up on the 22nd floor with its sweeping harbour views and top-of-the-range kitchen and culinary equipment is Chef Republic, which can be booked for private cooking workshops and events. Open daily from 9am.
54 Electric Road, Tin Hau
Royal Caviar Club pop-up
Royal Caviar Club’s outstanding caviar collection – from Superior Sturgeon to Premium Baerii Rare – will be available from 9 February–7 March at the brand’s Pacific Place pop-up. In addition (and available exclusively at the pop-up), you can pick up a selection of Besserat de Bellefon champagne. Caviar and bubbly – what a treat! Open daily, 10am–8pm.
Lane Crawford, 1/F, Pacific Place, 88 Queensway, Admiralty
Love pancakes but gluten is a no-no for you? Saori Pancake’s got you covered with its gluten-free Kyoto-style eggy pancakes that are topped with a mountain of stringy chestnut that resembles spaghetti. Saori is pretty elegant looking for a pancake joint too. Open daily from 11:30am (from 10:30am Friday–Sunday).
G/F, Haywood Mansion, 57 Paterson Street, Causeway Bay, 2348 8889
Say Hi to Wanchai
We somehow missed the Central debut of this eatery last year, but Say Hi is now serving in Wanchai too. This industrial-chic caff specialises in coffee, cocktails and global flavours, presenting comfort-food dishes such as Hokkaido pork with mashed potato and risotto with cauliflower and porcini mushrooms. Well, hello there! Open daily from 12pm.
Originating from the alternative and holistic health service of the same name, The Soulroom is a peaceful café founded by an astrologer and tarot reader that offers locally roasted coffee drinks, herbal teas and a short-but-sweet food menu – including these delectable-looking bagels. Open daily, 11am–6pm (from 10am at the weekend).
102 Ki Lung Street, Sham Shui Po
Home-grown gin brand Perfume Trees is set to open its first concept café-bar, Tankyu Distillery, at The Mills in Tsuen Wan. Head here for a taste of creative cocktails by Kit Cheung, co-founder of Perfume Trees.
Retail store open daily, 12–8pm. Tasting room open Sunday–Tuesday, 1–6pm, Wednesday, 1–8pm and Thursday–Saturday, 1–4pm. Omakase cocktails, with mixologists customising each drink according to guests’ preferences, are available Thursday–Sunday, 5–10pm. Book online for gin- and cocktail-tasting workshops ($150/person).
Shop 301, 3/F, The Mills, 45 Pak Tin Par Street, Tsuen Wan, 3460 2339
The kitchen of glam yet affordable Teppanyaki Mihara is led by Chef Terufumi Mihara, who once cooked for the Japanese Consulate in Chicago as well as at high-end Sanka Teppanyaki here in Central, hence the restaurant’s moniker. Modern Japanase omakase menus and six-course lunch sets will be the way to go once the restaurant opens mid-month, featuring premium ingredients from Japan such as Miyazaki A4 Wagyu beef, Hokkaido pork and scallops and tuna from Daisen, one for Japan’s oldest tuna suppliers. Don’t leave without sampling the chef’s fusion desserts, such as coffee tiramisu and panna cotta with strawberry soup, with their distinct Italian flair. Open daily from 12pm.
TMK Rap & Rolls
Debuting on Wednesday, 10 February, TMK’s edgy vibe and signature hand rolls will hit Starstreet Precinct, this time along with some new nori bowls – from fried pork cutlet, to marinated salmon, to tofu – that sound like the perfect lunchtime (and now dinnertime!) eats. The “rap” in the name refers to the eatery’s hip-hop theme, with artwork depicting rap icons and a massive wall of sound made of vintage boom boxes. Open daily from 11:30am.
17A Moon Street, Wanchai, 2662 2269 (no bookings)
Vie-Won-Won is quite an interesting little spot. Its name means “spiritual needs”in Canto slang, and it’s also a gift shop selling the likes of Chinese red packets and incense sticks. If the above pic from their IG is anything to go by, the fusion food is beautifully plated and as mysterious as Vie-Won-Won’s name. Open daily except Monday, 12–6pm.
1/F, Lok Sing Centre, 8 Sugar Street, Causeway Bay, 9687 9684
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