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Yung Kee second floor
Photograph: Courtesy Yung Kee

New restaurants to try in Hong Kong this October

Discover all the latest dining destinations in the city

Fontaine Cheng
Written by
Fontaine Cheng
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Whether you love Hong Kong for its classic culinary traditions or its eagerness for creative eats, there’s no stopping this city’s appetite for new bites. From brand new Japanese restaurants and a Korean-Italian eatery to regional Chinese hot pot destinations to try, and even a new food court inspired by regional hawker centres, here are the latest and greatest restaurants to get stuck into this month.

RECOMMENDED: Don’t forget to check out our list of the top 50 restaurants and the latest food and drink events and happenings in the city for more ideas on what to eat and drink.

New restaurants to try this October

  • Restaurants
  • Chinese
  • Lan Kwai Fong

This perennial favourite, which is best known for its roast goose and Cantonese cuisine delights, has returned after major renovation across two of its four floors. We're talking about booth seating updated with comfortable cushions on the ground floor, and In the Mood for Love inspired settings on the first floor in pink and green tones with embroidered peonies on the walls. They've also gotten rid of the tablecloths and removed most of the carpet to reveal the original Italian floor tiles that were underneath. Meanwhile, the second floor now enjoys a 'Grand Dining' concept which features Yung Kee’s dragon and phoenix stage, preserved artefacts, majestic wood carvings and more to set the scene for your meal.

The menu still honours Cantonese culinary traditions with dishes such as Signature charcoal roasted goose, smoked pork belly with pine nuts, and roasted pigeon legs with stir-fried pigeon fillet, among others that bring back their legions of loyal fans. Yung Kee has also revamped some more traditional recipes including their sea cucumber stuffed with diced garoupa, salted fish and minced pork which aims to please modern palates, and crispy toast with mixed shrimps and lobster tail which elevates the classic prawn toast.

  • Restaurants
  • Japanese
  • Sheung Wan

Located on the 29th floor of the new Connaught Marina in Sheung Wan, Wa-En Kappo offers surprisingly stunning views of Victoria Harbour from an intimate dining room. The Japanese restaurant focuses on kappo cuisine, which refers to food made by cutting with a knife and cooking with fire, so it's more than just sushi and sashimi here. Think local chicken and soybean milk soup served with a crispy beancurd sheet similar to the ones you enjoy at hotpot; steamed chawanmushi with rich and creamy foie gras; tempura trio of fish maw with mitsuba leaf, sardine, scallop and white fish paste, and Botan shrimp, and more. Plus, the team here is warm and friendly, so you don't have to worry about the usual hush-hush of high-end Japanese restaurants. Just sit back, sip on a glass of sake and enjoy each dish as it comes. Tasting menus here range from $1,680 to $1,980 per person, with boozy pairings available at $580 for three glasses of Champagne, sake and wine.

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  • Restaurants
  • Korean
  • Sham Shui Po

New Korean-Italian restaurant and bar Ppalli Ppalli, which means ‘hurry hurry’ and sounds a bit like the numbers ‘82 82’ in Korean, looks like a stainless steel spaceship in the middle of Sham Shui Po. Neon signs hoping to let the ‘good times roll’ meet concrete walls, glass bricks and an ever-changing programmatic light installation for that sci-fi time travel effect. The menu is full of creative fusion dishes inspired by Korean food with a base of traditional Italian recipes, including things such as Ssam Bouquet ($58 for one or $118 for sharing) with slow-cooked pork belly with Korean perilla leaves, lettuce and Korean hot sauce; Yukhoe Toast ($158) with Korean style raw beef tartare, pears, mullet roe, British horseradish and cucumber; and Samsaek Perdu ($58) with homemade pains au lait topped with seasonal fruits, lemon sauce and white chocolate mousse, among others. Drinks-wise, Ppalli Ppalli are also bringing a select number of Korean makgeolli and craft beer to Hong Kong for the first time.

  • Restaurants
  • Italian
  • Lan Kwai Fong

Opened by the same team behind Nepalese dumpling house Momoz, Sicilian is an Italian restaurant where comfort is the name of the game. The new 58-seat eatery is located on Hollywood Road in Central and will focus on dishes made from fresh Sicilian produce, taking diners from breakfast to dinner and cocktail hour with their own unique take on Italian cuisine. Highlights from the menu include seared scallop served with a sauce of cauliflower and coffee ($158); handmade pasta with crab, cherry tomato and pine nuts ($148); Mezze Maniche marsala masala lamb ($208) which is pasta with stewed lamb, red curry and marsala wine, and much more. Not forgetting desserts, there’s also Sicilian-style cannoli ($98), traditional Sicilian almond and marzipan cake ($118), and something they call Chocolate Therapy ($158) to tempt us all. 

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  • Restaurants
  • Chinese
  • Kowloon Tong

As one of Chongqing’s cultural symbols, spicy hot pot is one of the most popular culinary traditions of the region. This month, Liu’s Chong Qing Hot Pot opens in Festival Walk shopping mall, bringing that signature Chongqing flavour to Kowloon Tong. They are also offering a new and improved recipe for the restaurant’s signature Liu’s Mala Spicy Soup ($168/full pot; $98/half pot) with clarified beef tallow, spicy fermented bean paste, salted black bean, peppers and local Chongqing chillies, Chinese herbs and spices. You can even choose your preferred spice level so you don’t have to take the burn if you don’t want to! Signature dishes include Liu’s trio beef platter ($638) made up of Kagoshima A4 Wagyu chuck rib, USA prime short rib and Kagoshima pork belly; ma la beef ($198); a platter with Chongqing imported beef tripe, goose intestine, duck’s blood, pig’s kidney and liver ($158); and fresh seafood such as Australian lobsters, geoduck, or shellfish.

  • Restaurants
  • Japanese
  • Tsuen Wan

Named after the Japanese ideology that gives an individual sense of purpose and a reason for living, Ikigai Concepts is a new multifaceted Japanese dining and lifestyle hub that takes up a whopping 12,000sq ft space in Nina Mall II in Tsuen Wan West. The new space has five zones including an omakase counter, kushiyaki grill, washoku kitchen, teppanyaki bar, sake tasting lounge and bar, and two private dining rooms. So, whether you’re in the mood for sushi and sashimi, which for omakase lunch ($380 per person) or dinner ($780 per person) is really quite affordable, grilled skewers, teppanyaki or other Japanese culinary delights, it seems Ikigai Concepts has you covered. The sake bar even has an interactive vending dispensary in which you can scan menu QR codes for instant information on flavour, food pairing, popularity and sommelier’s choice.

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  • Restaurants
  • Food court
  • Tsim Sha Tsui

Another food hall to grace our city is 70s Food Dining by Vintage House which hosts a total of six dining concepts covering both local and international cuisine as well as a dine-in Italian Japanese fusion restaurant called Earth on the first floor. Situated in Tsim Tsa Tsui, the new two-floor dining destination offers everything from Southeast Asian dishes at House of Asian Flavours (亞洲香味屋); skewers, satay, pad thai and more at Thai Grill; vegan and veggie delights from A Taste of Victory (凱之味); Chongqing and Sichuan flavours at Ma Spicy Cuisine (馬麻辣); and premium fast food at Treasures Burger. For a sit-down meal, Earth offers a tasting menu featuring Italian dishes made using fresh Japanese ingredients such as slow-cooked honey-roasted Barbarie duck breast with lemon and green soybean sauce, tuna tartare served with a homemade wasabi dressing, Bostonian lobster with Hokkaido scallop linguine and more. The Vintage House part of the concept can be seen with the arched Victorian style double doors, retro ceiling fans, vintage green chairs and bamboo lamps. The plan is, once social distancing restrictions lift, to open 24 hours a day.

  • Restaurants
  • Chinese
  • Causeway Bay

It’s all about traditional Sichuan cuisine at Chuan, which has opened at Time Square in Causeway Bay to offer regional delicacies, hot pot, and handmade dim sum to Hongkongers. Fiery dish highlights on the menu include sautéed diced chicken with spicy red chilli (large $428; regular $318), steamed grilled green chilli with geoduck ($158), prawns with white pepper from Hainan Island in a casserole ($468), and much more. There’s also spicy Sichuan hot pot options with soup bases such as spicy Sichuan ($188), beef offal ($388), chicken and pork tripe with white pepper and pickles pot ($428). As for Sichuan style dim sum, think spicy crispy bun stuffed with roasted goose ($68), steamed rice rolls with beef and meat floss in Sichuan spicy sauce ($68) and steamed Shanghainese dumplings with spicy soup ($58), among other hot bites.

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  • Restaurants
  • Japanese
  • Tsim Sha Tsui

Located on the basement level of The Peninsula hotel, new Japanese restaurant Kushiro gives the omakase experience at other Hong Kong luxury hotels a run for their money. Using fresh seafood direct from Japanese fish markets, Kushiro’s expert team of talented Japanese chefs create an enticing omakase meal (lunch $880 for 19 dishes; dinner $1,980-$2,780 for 21 to 24 dishes) including appetisers, main dishes, sushi, soup and dessert. The water used to cook the sushi rice is said to have been sourced from the top of Mount Fuji in Japan to pair with the world-class ingredients including golden sturgeon caviar from Germany, French blue lobster, abalone from Mie Prefecture, Hokkaido sea urchin, and A4 Wagyu beef from Miyazaki Prefecture, to name a few. Inside, the interior is based on a moon-themed Japanese garden that flows from the entrance to the main dining area, whereby each section of the restaurant is inspired by different phases of the moon.

In case you missed what happened last month...

  • Restaurants
  • Central

New restaurant Fireside is all about open-flame grilling and allowing the flavour and complexity of each ingredient to shine. Not confined to one culinary direction, the restaurant, which has an open-fire grill fueled by varieties of wood and binchotan (Japanese coal) in the kitchen, offers food with elements borrowed from Spanish, Japanese, and Latin American cuisines and will take care of the entire process from butchery to smoking, ageing, grilling and plating for a rustic yet refined dining experience.

Highlights include a confit duck with fire-cooked rice, perfumed with aromatic almond wood and served on a sizzling skillet, Hokkigai (or surf clams) from Hokkaido, and Ora King Salmon smoked over applewood for three days among other dishes. Fireside will also offer rare and specialised meats from Galician Cachena and semi-wild mountain-native Herdwick Sheep, along with aged and cured seafood including local fish and coveted coral trouts. 

  • Restaurants
  • Chinese
  • Tsim Sha Tsui

The popularity of vegetarian cuisine, as evidenced by the recent opening of Veggie Kingdom in Tsim Sha Tsui, is very apparent in Hong Kong with more restaurants looking to create vegetarian dishes that taste just as good as it is for your health. Aiming to do this for Chinese vegetarian cuisine, Veggie Kingdom offers a range of food including Cantonese dim sum, a honey-coated BBQ 'pork', veggie fish fillets in spicy Sichuan soup, crispy shredded 'abalone' mushroom, and more.

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  • Restaurants
  • Contemporary European
  • Admiralty

The Continental at Pacific Place in Admiralty, which originally opened back in 2014, has been a favourite dining spot for many thanks to its classic British-European fare, quality cooking and confident service. The restaurant closed temporarily for two months but has now reopened with a new look and new management by neighbouring hotel The Upper House. The design looks refreshed with a tropical garden terrace and refined with leather-clad columns, polished white marble, and dark wood veneers yet still relaxed with its newly upholstered banquette seating.

The menus, curated by new British chef Graham Long, are made for everything from business lunches to drinks and snacks, to brunch and more. Dishes include things like heirloom tomatoes with goat’s curd, Australian lamb loin with smoked aubergine, and Basque cheesecake with poached cherries as well as fresh seafood, pasta, salad, and desserts. Set lunches (from $298) and weekend brunches will also be available.

  • Restaurants
  • Mong Kok

A younger extension of the Lab Eat restaurant, this new bistro serves sharing plates, sizzling steak (from $188), burgers ($148), baked chicken ($138) and more, as well as glasses of wine (from $58), spirits (from $58) and beers (from $58), all at accessible prices. The three-floor building in Mong Kok is a great space that can accommodate up to 150 people and is fitted out with red brick walls and industrial stairs that are in keeping with the restaurant's casual vibe. Lab Eat Bistro also has weekend brunch as well as tea set menus too.

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  • Restaurants
  • Italian
  • Central

Naples-born chef Antimo Maria Merone, whom some may recognise from 8 ½ Otto e Mezzo Bombana in Macau, is opening his first independent restaurant Estro on September 9 in partnership with JIA Group, the group behind popular restaurants such as Ando and Louise. Estro, which means inspiration in Italian, is focused on Neapolitan cuisine but eschews tradition and the rustic style usually associated with his birthplace for something more sophisticated, in both technique and presentation. The restaurant interior, designed by André Fu Studio, also takes inspiration from Naples, resulting in a luxurious aesthetic nuanced with old-world charm.

The menu is directed by the chef's memories and is inspired by his upbringing and Italian history. The Tomato Homage, for instance, is an appetiser based on the summers he spent on his family’s farm in the countryside and uses this fruit in numerous ways. Poached, dried and rehydrated tomato skins with tomato-shaped salted cod dipped in a sour sauce with clarified tomato water, using four different varieties, is a refreshing dish with complex flavour profiles. While his Pigeon Under Ashes dish draws inspiration from the ruins of Pompeii and takes pigeon, an ancient Roman delicacy, and envelops it in burnt artichoke buds and figleaves before encasing it in clay and cooking it in black ash. The pigeon is then served with artichoke and a Piedirosso wine sauce. The six-course dinner is priced at $1,480 and the eight-course menu is $1,880.

  • Restaurants
  • Korean
  • Tsuen Wan

Those in the know about K-culture will already be familiar with Itaewon in Seoul, thanks to its vibrant nightlife, young crowds and trendy mix of dining that ranges from the traditional to international. The Itaewon Kitchen and Bar is the second location – the first is in Fanling – that aims to bring a slice of that to Hong Kong inside Tsuen Wan’s D Park with a wide range of Korean cuisine. From kimbap, noodles, bibimbap, soups and stews to snacks, salad, fried chicken, meat dishes, and even dishes made specifically for those mad about cheese! They also offer an affordable set lunch (all under $100) as well as cake and hotteok (Korean pancake) for dessert along with smoothies, soft drinks, cocktails, mocktails to wash it all down.

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