Lately we’ve been revelling in the many ways and means of caffeinating one’s self in the city nowadays, so it’s about time we kept you in the loop about some of the newest and most amazing cafés and coffee shops around town. Your favourite may not be on here, but it’s our list.
HONG KONG ISLAND
Sheung Wan, Sai Ying Pun and Kennedy Town
Now with several branches around town, the OG outlet on Gough Street in Sheung Wan was at the back of an indie clothing shop and had a delightful little outside area from which you could sip your coffee. The site is now moving – stay tuned! In addition to sourcing, roasting and preparing top-notch coffee and serving up healthy food menus, EG creates weekly-changing ice-cream sandwiches with inventive combinations like Earl Grey cookie ice cream with chocolate chip cookies and cookie crumble.
Longstanding fave Barista Jam is worth its chops and has Japanese siphon coffee, French press, hand grinders, machine grinders, AeroPress, moka pots and every other method of brewing coffee imaginable. But don’t hold any business meetings at Barista Jam – there are often many start-up founders here who are on the prowl for good ideas.
97 Jervois Street, Sheung Wan, 2854 2211
Owners Marcus and Eugene (who notably know precisely what direction they’re taking, being from the West Coast themselves and with vocations of Economics Professor and Accountant at KPMG respectively) have carefully curated and designed the setting that reflects the cool of California in this artist’s haven (pictured below). They are also the only ones to stock Blue Bottle Coffee, which will cause coffee aficionados from the States to rejoice. A cup of this will whisk one back to San Fran (or even Brooklyn).
1 U Lam Terrace, Sheung Wan, 2540 2210
With additional locations in Central, Sheung Wan and Wanchai, Foodie Forks 2018 Best Café winner Cupping Room is home to a repeat barista champion of HK, so you can be sure these guys do good coffee. They have simple decor, the servers are very friendly, they offer Bonsoy soy milk and they cook up simple but tasty breakfasts like scrambled egg on sourdough. Wi-Fi and a constant inflow of people who do their work here because they are “creatives” (read: are freelance and don’t have an office) mean a buzzy environment that’s perfect for a few hours of genteel magazine browsing or a private catch-up.
Central: 18 Cochrane Street, 2511 3518
Sheung Wan: LG/F, 299 Queen’s Road Central, 2799 3398
Wanchai: 32 Swatow Street, 2371 2338
We almost don’t want to disclose their location on the Web – with coffee this nice, we want to keep our local fave all to ourselves. But, alas, in the age of information – you are welcome. Enjoy the delicious coffee and the education given with each cup’s origins when you visit. This café has a load of bakery treats and waffles too (with great coffee art comes great waffles).
26 Upper Lascar Row, Sheung Wan, 2880 0052
They’ve got espresso from Rwanda and coffee filters from Ethiopia. Market Lane is the chosen bean from that coffee mecca in the south, Melbourne. They also considerately offer a decent chai for the less coffee inclined (power to you for reading this far down the list): Prana Chai, a personal favourite of ours made with 100% black Ceylon tea, cinnamon, cardamom, fresh ginger and Australian bushland honey. Note that homemade gingerbread men have been rumoured to make an appearance from time to time, but we don’t guarantee anything.
Jordan: LG/F, Eaton Hong Kong, 380 Nathan Road, 2782 1818
Shek Tong Tsui: 1 Po Tuck Street, 2803 2323
Sheung Wan: Shop F2, LG/F, 33 Hillier Street, Sheung Wan, 2572 0238
This neighbourhood café offers favourites as well as speciality drinks such as almond milk coffee and kefir smoothies. Slowly ushering in a time of social change, Opendoor has food options like cauliflower fried rice for the vegans/paleos, plus a polite graphic that informs sippers of the coffee-to-milk-to-froth ratios that their coffee will actually consist of. Very helpful chaps.
120 Connaught Road West, Sai Ying Pun, 3460 3880
Moved from its original location on Po Hing Fong, 3rd Space keeps coming up with funky food flavours like sea salt caramel pancakes topped with homemade banana jam. Throw in a cup of coffee, warm hosts and all-day breakfast and you’re set to go. Great community feel.
16 Upper Station Street, Sheung Wan, 6616 9905
These guys afford you the chance to sit on giant steps out the front of their café –17 hipster points for you, Common Ground. The tranquillity of Shing Wong Street is especially appealing for a breakfast date at the weekend. They also host cool pop-ups.
19 Shing Wong Street, Central, 2818 8318
This neighbourhood spot serving simple but comforting food is all kinds of inviting, situated just opposite Hollywood Road Park. The upstairs space proves hip for meetings and even better for watching the little peoples beneath go by. Their soy flat white is solid, that we can vouch for, and they serve their iced latte in a glass mug. To boot, they are subtly zealous for nutrition and employ stealth nutrition wherever possible. We like that.
226 Hollywood Road, Sheung Wan, 2547 8008
The “Why 50” name came as a result of the owners’ intent to pay homage to coffee farmers, those at the very origin of the supply chain. It’s based on the idea that 50 coffee beans go into a shot of espresso, and when you take into account the number of espressos that are served each day just in Hong Kong alone, you can imagine the sheer amount of sweat and dedication those coffee farmers put in every day just to make your morning routine cuppa joe possible. Apart from a brilliant name with a profound meaning, Why 50 also serves amazing espresso, unsurprisingly, using a coffee machine made by industry giant Slayer and roasted by coffee scientist Keith Fong from Bloom Coffee House in Macau.
27 Hillier Street, Sheung Wan, 6532 4161/6878 0435
This quiet and quaint café and flower shop boasts an electic interior, featuring walls dripping in all things floral. Head over to be greeted by Hong Kong’s first all-you-can eat s’mores buffet – we can never get enough of these ooey-gooey goodies!
23 New Market Street, Sheung Wan, 9741 0370
A treat for coffee and Instagram fanatics alike, this quaint coffee shop is tucked away amongst a range of antique shops. Serving up classic coffee and tea in porcelain cups, coffee has never been so cute. For a nice change of pace, order up a cup of Okinawan black sugar milk.
26 Upper Lascar Row and 12 Tung Street (2 shops), Sheung Wan, 9511 7197
First opened in Sheung Wan and now reloacted to Causeway Bay, the long queues outside Urban Coffee Roaster are proof of its popularity amongst us Hongkers. Their popular home blend is not to be missed, and their espresso tonic is something we rarely come across at other coffee shops in Hong Kong. Treat yourself to a decadent late breakfast/early lunch and a good cuppa and your day will already feel a whole lot better. Additional branches in Kowloon. They also offer a monthly coffee-bean subscription service and see brewing equipment and accessories online.
Causeway Bay: Shop B, G/F, Fashion Walk, 8 Cleveland Street, 3594 6569
Prince Edward: 135 Lai Chi Kok Road, 9157 4859
TST: Shop 44, G/F, Mirador Mansion, 7 Bristol Avenue, 2363 3661
Anyone else hate doing their laundry? Laundry day sucks because you have to dedicate time to it and waiting is boring. Coffee & Laundry creates the perfect solution to this, because now you can wait for your laundry while enjoying a cuppa and getting productive on your computer. Coffee shop first and laundromat second, the coffee here is sourced from Ethiopia. The blend is described to be delicate and floral, with flavours of white flower, peach and oolong tea finish. If you like your coffee a bit acidic and sweet, you’re in for a treat.
1 Queen Street, Sheung Wan
Oldish’s interior is like its name suggests... oldish. The vintage-themed shop is a popular Instagram spot for locals and tourists alike, and the ambience inside is nothing short of welcoming. This is the perfect spot for a girls’ day brunch or afternoon wind-down. Oldish does not serve skimmed milk, soy milk and decaf coffee, so people with allergens might want to take note. The hot rose latte is recommended, both for the taste and for the Instagram-aesthetic reasons.
53 Tung Street, Sheung Wan, 2697 3313
Arguably serving up the best coffee in a 20-block radius, owner Herbert Lau learned from his time working at The Coffee Academïcs that Italian coffee has the best flavour and intensity for him and so set up shop in Kennedy Town offering coffee prepared with a manually operated lever espresso machine and imported Italian-roasted Musetti beans.
78–86 Catchick Street, Kennedy Town, 9104 2404
Featuring a carefully curated selection of teas – and Intelligentsia coffee – this Sai Ying Pun café creates a welcome and comfortable space that’s perfect as an extension of your own home. Thumbs-up for the chilled outdoor space and pet friendliness to boot. Newer branch in Sheung Wan.
Sai Ying Pun: 14 Second Street, 2915 8878
Sheung Wan: G/F, Bonham Circus, 40–44 Bonham Strand East, no phone
Tucked away on a street of building merchants and mechanics, this has become a quiet success story. With a bounty of magazines available, Wi-Fi and a full menu of every kind of sweet and savoury topping you can think of for your classic waffles, this is a nice spot for some “me time” or an afternoon spent with friends. But be warned – it’s always busy at the weekend and they only take reservations for parties of six or more.
Shop 9, New Fortune House, 4–8 North Street, Kennedy Town, 2855 8890
Winstons Coffee has easily become one of our favourite coffee spots in Hong Kong because of its cosy ambience and amazing service. There is no fancy truffle-laden breakfast menu or loud music, which sometimes overcompensate for what should be the star of the show: a good cup of coffee. They have a variety of blends to choose from, and when in doubt, their group of Australian baristas will be more than happy to help.
Kennedy Town: Shop 8, G/F, The Hudson, 11 Davis Street, 2697 1878
Sai Ying Pun: 213 Queen’s Road West, 2559 5078
This is a cult favourite with many drinkers of the coff in HK, even more so given they sell their blessed beans in-store and online. Japanese drip coffee is a must here, and if you are into variety, you will be pleased to note they have a coffee of the week to keep things fresh.
69 Peel Street, SoHo, Central, 3106 0760
Fuel Espresso feels modernist, classical, aesthetically pleasing and underground all at the same time, even as you sit in the middle of one of Hong Kong’s poshest malls. This is a design-led coffee house that emulates NYC with its dark interiors and smooth jazz, and the coffee itself is quite sublime. Although one of the pricier choices when it comes to a cup of joe, the surrounds make it totally worth it.
Branches including Chater House, ifc mall, LANDMARK, Pacific Place and ICC; click here for locations
A venture that began in expectation of filling the unmet need for a solicitous, locally roasted bean coffee shop in Hong Kong, Filters Lane sits snugly in Mid-Levels on Caine Road. This little haven of a café seems a tad intimidating owing to the large contraption that occupies the spot visible from the front window, which, upon entrance to the shop, becomes immediately clear as a roasting machine. The subsequent heady aromas pave the way for a masterful cup of coffee (and they have Bonsoy soy milk – bless!).
111 Caine Road, Mid-Levels, 2517 1868
These guys care a lot about their coffee. They have four well-designed outlets and very high-quality coffee. A menacing magical three-headed Black Eagle coffee machine is used to magnificent ends given the latte art they skilfully execute. Drip coffee is also available.
50 Stanley Sreet, Central, 2663 2884 (plus branches in Sheung Wan and Wanchai; click here for locations)
Award-winning barista Dawn Chan brings a collection of eclectic coffee creations to Amber. Keeping it creative with the likes of pineapple-infused brews as well as the staple house black coffee, this place is a sure winner. Fancy something a little stronger? The café transforms into a wine bar come sunset.
142 De Voeux Road Central, Central, 3106 0872
It’s not easy to find this hole in the wall amidst the array of restaurants on Peel Street, but if you happen to follow the strong scent of brewing coffee, you will most definitely be led to Fineprint. They offer a variety of blend and sometimes have seasonal blends too. It may not be the most spacious coffee shop, but that’s what makes it so homey. And what better food to pair your coffee with than a stellar chocolate chip cookie, amirite? Newer branch in Tai Hang.
Central: 38 Peel Street, SoHo, Central, 5503 6880
Tai Hang: 1 Lily Street, 5503 6880
Easily becoming the trendiest coffee shop in town, NOC Coffee Co. is expanding far and wide, known best for its Instagrammable avo toast and scrambled egg and, well, coffee. You can’t go wrong with a classic black or white, but for a special NOC touch, try the pour over or, for a fun treat, the fizzpresso.
34 Graham Street, Central, 2606 6188 (plus branches in Admiralty, Causeway Bay, Sai Ying Pun, Sheung Wan and Wanchai; click here for locations)
For a healthy lunch and quick coffee fix, Interval Coffee Bar is the place to go. What used to be an event space has now been revamped into a coffee bar with a Nordic feel. For those lactose intolerant, Interval’s got you covered with their grey coffee (made with non-dairy milk).
UG/F, 33 Wellington Street, Central, 2570 7568
Apart from the usual classic espresso, Kaffeeholic serves the rare types of coffee like lungo (espresso with double the amount of water normally used) and piccolo latte (a small latte). They also serve up different flavours of latte, including rose, salted caramel and roasted hazelnut – perfect for those with a sweet tooth.
G/F, 148 Wellington Street, Central, 3490 7665
% Arabica is one of the rare coffee roasters in the world that actually own a coffee farm. With a sister shop in Kyoto (meaning it’s ultra cool and ultra high quality), they also provide a service called the Barista Experience where a barista teaches you how to grind the beans, pull an espresso and make a latte using a Slayer coffee machine. This is one of our favourite coffee shops in town. They don't have the best blend per say, but the process used to make the perfect cup is meticulous and consistent in quality.
Central: Shop 1050, 1/F, ifc mall, 8 Finance Street Central, 2319 0389
Quarry Bay: Shop G03, G/F, Yick Fat Building, 1048–1056 King’s Road/2–32 Yau Man Street, 2474 8883
TST: Shop KP-41, 1/F, Tsim Sha Tsui Star Ferry Pier, 2323 5203
Wanchai, Causeway Bay and Eastern Hong Kong Island
Offering more than just a coffee shop is this joint designed like mashup of a European train station and a Hong Kong MTR station. The menu features timeless numbers such as frothy cappuccinos and rich Americanos as well as special guests like the ever-so-sweet creme brûlée cappuccino. Food isn’t on ration here, so with an array of dessert delights, from croissants to freshly baked cakes, fuel your sweet tooth to your heart’s content.
G/F, Sunlight Tower, 248 Queen’s Road East, Wanchai, 2868 2100
A small institution, Espresso is a small-batch speciality coffee roaster dedicated to sourcing and roasting superior Arabica coffee beans from select origins. They are also the only wholesale coffee roaster in Hong Kong to have a licensed coffee grader (Q Grader certified by the Specialty Coffee Association of America) and World Barista Championship judge amongst the staff to provide unparalleled roasting quality control, coffee training and bar management. They care about important things like heat, water, sugar, and milk. Plus, they run coffee appreciation and latte art classes.
Quarry Bay: 4–6 Hoi Wan Street, 2613 2638
TST: Shop B116, B1/F, Mira Place One, 132 Nathan Road, 2674 1838
Every time we walk in here we let out a shriek because it’s so reminiscent of Australian coffee shops that a deeply subconscious instinct is awakened at the familiarity and evident high-quality beans. They use Bonsoy, monthly single origin beans, and a Chemex brewer. They specialise in artisan coffee, breakfast, homemade desserts and even a craft beer or two. So when in Wanchai, this should be a go-to.
15 Swatow Street, Wanchai, 2362 1899
Famous for their espresso, unique cube-shaped baked custard and Japanese tea-ceremony-like experience, Omotesando Koffee was a huge, huge hit back in Tokyo before the shop closed there in December 2015. The Hong Kong outpos retains much of the original shop’s minimalist design along with its signature products.
Shop 24–25, G/F, Lee Tung Avenue, 200 Queen’s Road East, Wanchai, 2601 3323
For Japanese-style drinks, this is the place to be. With its origins as a humble tearoom in Tokyo in 1968, this café brings nothing but authenticity. The menu includes rich 100% Blue Mountain coffee, matcha floats, smoothies and, for an extra-sweet treat, uji matcha soft serve and parfaits.
Shop B14, B1/F, Lee Tung Avenue, 200 Queen’s Road East, Wanchai, 2793 0028
When we think cosy coffee shop, er think Elixir. When you want to sit down with a cup of coffee and wind down with a good book, this is a great option. Their honey Americano, made with honey and chocolate syrup, is perfect for those who like their coffee on the sweeter side, but if you want something refreshing, the tonic espresso is a better choice.
25 Haven Street, Causeway Bay, 6083 0915
It’s easy to miss this coffee shop as you need to move away from the hustle and bustle of Times Square and search for a narrow alley, into which you will find this hidden café. The interior is quite the opposite of the modern, spacious cafés you see frequently popping in the F&Bcene. On the contrary, here you get a few tables and chairs and a well-made cup of coffee – it feels homey and unpretentious and is a quick getaway from hectic workaday life. They no longer offer warm food (oh, we miss their omelettes!), but they still serve up small bites.
26A Russell Street, Causeway Bay, 2892 2927
TREE even by itself, is a legendary idea. Yes, Nicole Wakley, we would love a beautiful, sustainable and comfortable home-living store here in Hong Kong. Kudos to you for following that dream. Add a coffee shop up on the 28th floor overlooking the beautiful (on a good-weather day) sea and decent coffee, organic juices and homemade cupcakes, cookies, lemon cheesecake and criminally rich brownies, plus Wi-Fi, and you’ll probably never leave. Which is quite well played, given you are in a furniture shop.
28/F, Horizon Plaza, 2 Lee Wing Street, Ap Lei Chau, 2870 1586
These guys are on a rampage, opening shops left and right. As the name suggests, they educate their customers about all aspects of their coffee, crop to cup. This is cool, because from the initial selection of coffee origin and roasting method to the fine-tuning of blend proportion and cupping, each step is done with care, passion and an uncompromising quest for top quality. As part of their intellectual pursuit of the perfect coffee, they are always striving to find new ways of connecting with consumers and offer things like classes sensory analysis and brewing skills. The beachside location in Repulse Bay is our fave of the bunch. Nab a seat by the open front if you can.
Shop 108, 1/F, The Pulse, 26–30 Beach Road, Repulse Bay, 2511 1902 (plus many other branches around town – from Happy Valley to Kowloon Tong – click here for locations)
No one does a sparkling Americano better than Sensory ZERO. They also serve up something called a Fat Americano, which is a double shot of espresso poured over a can of Coca-Cola. We enjoyed their homemade ginger latte a lot, but we haven’t had the guts to try out the Fat Americano, so if you do try it, let us know what you think!
Shop G01, G/F, One Island South, 2 Heung Yip Road, Wong Chuk Hang, 2511 6011 (plus branches in Tai Koo, TST and Wanchai; click here for locations and scroll down)
We can rave on and on about how good the food is here, but this guide is all about coffee, and ACT does coffee as excellent as they do food. Awarded a Foodie Forks 2018 award for Ethical Eats, their motto of “do good, drink great” is all the more reason why we love ACT, which is also soothingly stylish in design. They have a variety of African coffee beans to choose from, sourced sustainably and traded directly from Uganda, Ethiopia and Cameroon.
Suite 1501–1504, 15/F, 41 Heung Yip Road, Wong Chuk Hang, 2180 7536
More of a secret society than a coffee shop, they’re open everyday, but come Friday night, explore the wonders of speciality coffee. They offer weekly coffee workshops on Tuesday evening where you can explore espresso making and latte art . What they are most proud of, however, is coffee in its original form, consumed plain, without sugar or milk. Diehard. The first qualified Q Grader for coffee in HK is the owner, just FYI, and many an overseas guests have commented on the high-quality coffee when we have sent them over.
21 Hak Po Street, Mongkok, 2781 0363
Single-origin beans, coffee workshops, a house blend that is smooth but punchy. You can also do an espresso tasting set that allows for a width of perspective in the coffee world. If you are still not convinced, watch this video of their baristas making coffee. #nuffsaid.
284 Temple Street, TST, 2793 3480
So this place is awesome. They define themselves as “最新消息及發佈 A Bookshop, Café, Creative, Design, Think, A Vibrant Cultural Cinegems, Young, Force, Gift, My Gym, Elegant, Classé, A Boiling Circle”. After about the fifth descriptor, you’ve lost us, but the bookshop/café/cine gem runs true, and it is a mecca for those who like to seek out interesting literature you might not find at Bookazine whilst waiting for your indie film to start and sipping single-origin beans. Half the shop is a bookstore, merged flawlessly with a café, that is attached to a cinema that plays both quirky and mainstream flicks. A haven for students and entrepreneurs and for those who like independent films, they also have some great snacks including vegan ice cream and lentil bolognese., which are perfect for your lactose-free soul.
Shop H2, Block 3, Properous Garden, Public Square Street, Yau Ma Tei, 2384 8929
This place is super great and kinda reminds you of friend’s cosy DIY home, if your friend was ultra trendy, had an eye for interiors and enjoyed a nice wooden crate or nine. A hybrid café/gallery/florist, if you are into design and aesthetics and like flowers and coffee, this would be a great place to hang out. They have many a brew to sample, like the popular Doctor Ng that has caramel and toasted almond notes. Afternoon cakes, fine coffee and some nice teas, this is a spot to bag a bunch of flowers and a caffeine hit. Newer branch in Causeway Bay.
Causeway Bay: eslite, 9/F, Hysan Place, 500 Hennessy Road, 6039 2886
Prince Edward: 62–64 Flower Market Road, 2397 0638
This café was a discovery that graced us as though from the firmaments. The crew here range from baristas to chefs, the owner originally from San Fran (the name gives nothing away). They have great coffee and lovely food and host appealing events like stand-up comedy and have an all-day breakfast that goes all day long, with is like the antithesis of Lionel Ritchie’s 80s hit, but with just as much fun.
201 Tai Nan Street, Sham Shui Po, 3689 3292
172 Kiu Kiang Street, Sham Shui Po
(Plus branches at SCAD, Harbour City and Wanchai; click here for locations)
The best place to get some assignments done? Hands down, 29 Coffee. Their coffee is on the affordable side for university students, while their quick bites are filling, delicious and definitely worth the price point. Did we mention they have an amazing service? We’re sure you’ll be heading here in no time.
29 Tai Yip Street, Ngau Tau Kok, 6278 9799
So this place is like a coffee temple in the mountains of Hong Kong. Minus the mountains. And the temple. But the same reverential treatment is expected at this brewhouse, as the world siphonist (a brewing technique) champion works here. Be sure to come bearing gifts, and you will be treated to coffee beans from three different and quite unusual countries: Taiwan, Italy and our very own Hongkers. Locavores will be most pleased by this, and they do great latte art too – natch.
Shop 8, G/F, Fook Cheong Building, 37 Ma Wang Road, Yuen Long, 9430 1433
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