Happy new year, fellow food lovers of Hong Kong! They say that as you get older, time passes by even quicker. In 2017, the year in which I turned 30, I may as well have turned 70, as it was Christmas before I knew it and now here we are already half way through January 2018! Let’s hope this year sticks around a little longer, as something tells me it is going to be a very good one!
Looking back over last year, for various reasons, The Dim Sum Diaries took a bit of a backseat in my life and I wasn’t able to post as many reviews of Hong Kong restaurants as I would have liked, although I still certainly did my best!
Unfortunately, this also meant that I didn’t get around to posting my shortlist for the best restaurants of 2017, but, I must say that actually this year’s top 10 winners were pretty clear to me. Several of the places I reviewed were so incredibly good that I knew, right from the start, that I would need to reserve them a place on this list.
So, here you have it, hungry readers, below is my list of the top 10 restaurants that I reviewed in 2017, in the order in which I visited them, including my favourite dish (or dishes) from each one:
This is one of the places I was referring to that I knew would make it onto my list. The combination of delicious Peruvian and Japanese flavours, excellent service and a lively atmosphere make this one of my favourite restaurants in HK. They also do an excellent weekend brunch with food that just keeps on coming!
Stand-out dish: Ki-mo-chi fried chicken and the baby back ribs
G/F, 18-20 Lyndhurst Terrace, Central +852 2811 1152
As the name suggests, this place specialises in freshly made pasta, topped with simple yet insanely tasty ingredients. Within less than one year of opening in Wan Chai, Pici number two opened in Soho and both are packed for lunch and dinner every day. This is comfort food at its very best.
Stand-out dish: Vitello tonnato and Ravioli with black truffle and asparagus
16 St Francis Yard, Wan Chai +852 2755 5523
G/F, 24-26 Aberdeen Street, Soho +852 2755 5233
Perched up high on the 28th floor of Hotel ICON in TST East, Above & Beyond serves excellent Cantonese cuisine with a stunning view to match. Again, the name kind of gives it away, but this is not your standard Chinese restaurant – here the menu showcases traditional Cantonese fare with a creative, modern twist, paired with some truly fantastic wines and spirits.
Stand-out dish: Kung Pao Lobster
28/F, Hotel ICON, 17 Science Museum Road, Tsim Sha Tsui East +852 3400 1318
This family-run restaurant in Sai Ying Pun simply blew me away. The food is like nothing you can find elsewhere in HK, featuring influences from all over Asia, with Indian cuisine at the core. I have returned several times to take friends and family there and cannot recommend it highly enough. Portions are generous, so just make sure you leave room for dessert!
Stand-out dish: What’s the Mattar Paneer and definitely the carrot halwa cheesecake…
14 Fuk Sau Lane, Sai Ying Pun +852 3702 1237
For a casual K town dinner when you’re craving serious comfort food, Alvy’s is the perfect spot. The pizzas, made with a unique beer-based sourdough base, are satisfyingly doughy and chewy, with a selection of both traditional and slightly more quirky toppings. Service is excellent too.
Stand-out dish: Ma-La-Di-Da pizza.
8 Holland Street, Kennedy Town. +852 2312 2996
This place took me quite by surprise, as I didn’t expect to have a meal this good in the old Dan Ryan’s spot! However, with an Italian chef as good as Chef Luca de Bernadinis, I should have known it would be excellent. The menu features seasonal, fresh ingredients that create refined yet affordable and comforting Italian dishes for all the family.
Stand-out dish: the spaghetti fish roe “carbonara” style.
Shop 112, Pacific Place, 88 Queensway, Admiralty. +852 2115 8080
Since this long-standing Portuguese restaurant found its new home on Wyndham Street, it is even better than the old. The much more concise menu showcases contemporary Portuguese cuisine prepared with new cooking techniques and modern presentation that pleasantly surprised us all.
Stand-out dish: The Portuguese octopus confit.
2/F Parekh House, 63 Wyndham Street, Central +852 2905 1168
For Mexican food lovers, 11 Westside may quickly become your favourite spot for seriously good tacos. I can’t get over how good the flour tortillas themselves are, not to mention the delicious toppings. Then again, when the brains behind this place is known as the ‘taco king’, you know you’ll be getting the real deal.
Stand-out dish: The al pastor pork tacos. And the churros III ways!
1/F, The Hudson, 11 Davis Street, Kennedy Town. +852 3996 7754
British luxury furniture store Timothy Oulton’s restaurant, Gough’s on Gough is perfect for a special occasion or a long-overdue date night. An experience dining here is complete perfection, from the stunningly elegant décor, to the exquisite food and excellent service. Just be prepared for a sizeable bill!
Stand-out dish: Australian beef tartare.
15 Gough Street, Central. +852 2473 9066
Calling all carnivores, MEATS is a no-reservations, casual eatery, offering a simple, meat-centric sharing menu with influences from all across the globe. Opt for the chef’s menu and you’ll be filled to the brim with the restaurant’s best dishes for a mere $420!
Stand-out dish: The lamb ribs and the slightly spicy fried rice
G/F, 28-30 Staunton Street, Central. +852 2711 1812
Here’s to another year of good eating, in an attempt to discover more and more of the SAR’s best restaurants. I have a few on the hit list that I didn’t manage to check out last year, but, as always, if you know a good place that you think should be featured on The Dim Sum Diaries, please don’t hesitate to get in touch!