Pancakes are no longer confined to the breakfast table. These batter-made rounds have received a boost in popularity in recent years with fluffy, souffle stacks being especially trendy. Originally from Japan but now just as big in Hong Kong, these airy pancakes range from the oh-so-fluffy variety to denser, tight-crumbed types that are more like cake. Just like regular pancakes, you can enjoy them with a simple drizzle of syrup and pat of butter, or you can load them up with everything from fresh fruits to chocolate sauce and homemade granola. If all this talk of pancakes has got you craving some, here are the best places to get your fix.
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Hong Kong’s best thick-style pancakes
This is the first overseas outpost of Osaka’s popular pancake chain. The restaurant specialises in ultra-fluffy soufflé pancakes, including its signature three-layer Premium Pancake ($138), which is made fresh-to-order. Like the flagship store in Japan, each layer is 4cm thick and is served with maple syrup, custard and fresh cream. If you want to try this cloudlike creation, note that it’s only sold at 11am, 3pm and 6pm each day in limited quantities.
Also from Osaka, A Happy Pancake opened its first overseas store at Lee Garden Three earlier this year. The store does both sweet and savoury pancakes, including its eponymous signature creation ($108), one topped with hot chocolate and homemade granola ($118), and another served with thick-sliced bacon and scrambled eggs ($128). The pillowy soft pancakes take 20 minutes to make but are definitely worth the wait.
Originally from Tokyo, Flipper’s is home to the so-called kiseki ‘miracle’ pancake. This is a feathery light, eggy cake that boasts an impressive mochi-like resistance. It’s especially delicious when served with fresh fruits, Hokkaido cream and homespun maple syrup. Aside from the four standard flavours, including plain ($99) and with berries and bananas ($119), be sure to keep an eye out for Flipper’s special-edition stacks.
This humble little store stands out for several reasons. Firstly, it’s the only Hong Kong-born establishment on this list that’s otherwise dominated by Japanese heavyweights. Secondly, the prices for its soufflé pancakes are jaw-droppingly affordable. Aside from the original flavour ($29) and the cream cheese pancake ($37), the store also sells house-special mille-feuilles, which are layered, custard-filled creations sandwiched between layers of marshmallowy pancake.
Unlike other places on this list, Yukinoshita isn’t known for soufflé pancakes. Instead, it serves a denser atsuyaki variety, plated as a single 4cm-high cake per serving. There’s a distinct and rich aroma to each bite, thanks in no small part to the use of Hiroshima eggs in the batter. We recommend the original mandarin honey ($68) and the decadent 72 percent dark chocolate ($78). Aside from the pancakes, Yukinoshita also does kakigori shaved ice desserts featuring seasonal Japanese fruits.