Restaurant, Coffee Shop and Bar Inspiration
Sometimes in Hong Kong we are spoiled for choice for where to eat, grab coffee or have after work drinks. With new places constantly popping up, how do you decide where to go?
Travel writer, Sarah Richard landed in Hong Kong just 6 months ago, but since then has discovered more about the city than many of us who’ve lived here for years! Her latest column for The HK HUB sees her eating and drinking her way around Hong Kong and sharing her favourite spots with us.
It’s easy to constantly head to the latest hot opening, but Sarah will also remind of us of some of the old favourites. With so much choice, Sarah will share her honest verdicts to save you time and to make sure you are seeing the best the city has to offer…
Ho Lee Fook
So according to their website, ‘Ho lee fook “good fortune for your mouth” is a funky Chinese kitchen inspired by old school Hong Kong cha chaan tengs and the spirit of late-night Chinatown hangouts in 1960’s New York. Taiwanese-born chef Jowett Yu’s inventive approach to Chinese flavours is best enjoyed with an open mind and a strong appetite.’
I couldn’t put it much better myself. This place is all about the vibe and the flavours. That one restaurant you take your friends to who are visiting to ensure they fall in love with HK from day one. Although it is not as cheap as a local Chinese restaurant it can’t be beaten on atmosphere and taste. They also have great twists on classic/modern cocktails with a Hong Kong edge (ask for the apple bubble tea). So go take your friends there; be that person that ‘knows a great place just round the corner’
1 Elgin St, Central
Not A Burger
This has got to be my new favourite budget place in town. A Korean take on a healthy burger. Everything you look for in a burger minus the bun – instead it is replaced with rice. I am absolutely obsessed with them, this week I went through 4.. But the best thing has to be the price! The cheapest one (Tuna and Kimchi) is HKD $20 and the most expensive is $40! They actually look like real burgers too (despite their name ‘Not A Burger’). Unfortunately no website or contact details as they are new, but it is just opposite Sheung Wan food market.
Shop 8A, G/F, 8-12 Morrison Street, Sheung Wan
Hong Kong versus Spain in this bustling hideout smack bang in the centre of the city. However as soon as you enter you feel like you have escaped the skyscrapers and frenetic streets, and actually arrived in one of Spain’s best tapas bars. Having spent a lot of time in Spain it would be hard to rival one of the cute neighbourhood tapas spots, but it certainly gives them a good run for their money.
Boqueria’s Spanish Happier Hour is $208. It runs from Monday – Saturday (6-8pm) and includes free-flow Estrella draught bar and house-made sangría. A selection of seasonal tapas is laid out each night and replenished throughout Happier Hour.
7/F, LKF Tower, 33 Wyndham Street, Central
I love this place, such a great spot for a lazy ‘Yawning’ Sunday lunch. Maybe I was influenced by my hangover but their spaghetti carbonara was pretty much perfect and at a really reasonable price. Great place to laugh about the hazy memories of the night before.
G/F, No 9, Haven Street, Causeway Bay
Gaylords is one of many Indian restaurants in HK located right in the centre of TST. It’s easy to find and there is plenty to do nearby. However, I found it nothing more than average. The service is good, the food is good, but the prices are definitely on the high side of acceptable. If you’re over in TST give it a go, but I wouldn’t make a special trip over (go to Sheung Wan food market and grab an Indian meal for much less).
23-25 Ashley Rd, TST
How good do these quinoa pancakes look! I’ve been here a few times actually, they do great healthy foods and snacks and do a good value lunch menu. It seems to be getting more popular each time I go in, and rightfully so. Go there to get a cheap salad or snack.
G/F, 60 & 62B, Staunton Street, Central
Talk about coffee with a view. Set on the 29th floor you can literally sip coffee on top of a skyscraper. Now when it comes to coffee, I’m pretty critical. I named my whole website around it after all.
I liked the coffee here. And in my terms that’s like agreeing it’s about time you meet your boyfriend’s family. So take that as you will. It’s a pretty great spot.
29th Floor, Cheuk Nang Plaza, 248-250 Hennessey Road, Wan Chai
I went there as I redeemed some free credit from the Sugar app (Click here and enter COFFEELIFE to get yours too) for a ‘Special Cyprus Coffee’ which was like a thick frozen sweet coffee. It was way too sweet and thick for my liking, but it was good to discover another a new coffee shop in Sheung Wan.
G/F, 109 Jervois Street, Sheung Wan
Every writer’s dream coffee shop. Comfy sofas, good WIFI and plenty of plug sockets. They even have travel guides on their book shelve. This is one of my favourite hangout. The coffee is average, but the place its self is great. No pressure from the staff to leave and a great place to people watch when you get writer’s block.
Shop B, G/F, 16 Tai Ping Shan Street, Sheung Wan
Sai Ying Pun is definitely the next hipster hot spot with dozens of trendy bars and restaurants popping up at a phenomenal rate. This one has to be one of the best out there. Creative cocktails and Korean food all at a reasonable price and an awesome atmosphere. A great alternative to the busy more expensive bars in Central.
58 High St, Sai Ying Pun
This may just be the coolest new place in town, recently opened by award-winning bartender Beckaly Franks, it seems to be everything Hong Kong was missing in the bar scene. None of that fancy decor or over priced drinks, this bar has real soul and atmosphere. Inspired by neighbourhood bars of Portland, Brooklyn and San Francisco it plays great music and has amazing (also very attractive) staff keep that keep you in there way after your bed time. I think I may have just found my new favourite.
13 Old Bailey Street, Central
An oldie but a goodie, Oola isn’t just a brunch spot. The happy hour is a great way to kick start your night with $50 Mojitos and attentive staff.
G/F, Bridges Street, Centre Stage, Soho, Mid-Levels
Sarah is a 26 year old professional world wanderer. Four years ago, she left the UK and everything that offered security and routine in exchange for a life of constant excitement and adventure. Through working as a Scuba Dive Instructor, freelance writer and running her blog www.coffeewithasliceoflife.com she now leads a life as a full time digital nomad. Based in Hong Kong you will most likely bump into her typing away on her laptop in one of the city latest coffee shops.