The oldest restaurants in Hong Kong
As unfussy and unpretentious as it gets, Ai Wen Sheng has been a Sham Shui Po staple since 1956 – making it one of the oldest dai pai dongs in all Hong Kong. The menu's changed little over the years with the tiny resto still serving authentic local fare.
Recommended dish: Salt and pepper squid
The first restaurant in this corner of the world to serve truly exquisite European cuisine, dining at Gaddi’s has been a five-star experience for more than 60 years now. Its classically posh interior is a beautiful example of neoclassical architecture and the impeccable service has never faltered over the years.
Recommended dish: Wagyu beef sirloin baked in pastry crust
This slope-side eatery has been famous for its classic Chinese desserts for more than a century. Yuk Yip has remained a popular spot for some late-night meals and as a place to satisfy any sweet cravings after dinner or drinks.
Recommended dish: Glutinous rice balls with peanuts, red bean soup
Many assert that is the first proper cha chaan teng in Hong Kong. That claim may be dubious but its credentials as a local culinary institution most certainly are not up for debate, having been around since the 1940s. All the standard cha chaan teng fare here is good but it’s the coffee and egg tarts that have kept people coming back to this patch of Wan Chai for over 70 years.
Recommended dish: Egg tarts
Step back in time to the 1950s at this quaint neighbourhood café. The simplistic layout, rustic furnishings and the loyal crowd perfectly personify the Hong Kong of yesteryear. A cup of the smooth and gloriously creamy milk tea is guaranteed to hit you with a wave of nostalgia as well. One of the very few authentic old-school HK diners keeping it real in this fast-moving cosmopolitan city.
Recommended dish: French toast
90 years old, Jimmy’s is the definition of an institution. It's run into some troubles recently with closures and reopenings in the hope of recapturing the magic of the restaurant's early days when it served some of the best international food and regional classics in Hong Kong. Even if it isn't what it once was, it remains an important part of the city's history.
Recommended dish: Jimmy’s bangers and mash.
First founded in Guangzhou in 1889, Lin Heung made the move to Hong Kong in 1926 and has been a beloved fixture in our territory ever since. The quaint tea house has maintained its roots, continuing to serve traditional dim sum from a trolley – a practice long-abandoned by most places in the city.
Recommended dishes: Quail egg or pork liver siu mai
Opened in the 1950s, Mido is one of the oldest cha chaan teng in the city and has become a popular tourist attraction and Instagrammer’s favourite – in no small part down to the fact that it’s retained its old-school décor.
Recommended dish: Baked pork chop rice
A favourite among neighbourhood locals, the food at Tai Ping Koon is consistent and plentiful. The signature dishes are the roasted young pigeon, TPK dry fried rice noodles with beef and Swiss sauce chicken wings. Tai Ping Koon is one of the oldest existing names in Chinese restaurant history, having first opened in 1860 in Guangzhou before coming to Hong Kong in 1937.
Recommended dish: Swiss sauce chicken wings
Altogether almost 130-years-old through its various iterations, Ser Wong Fong has been an institution here for generations. The restaurant has retained a fiercely loyal following who come in their droves for the shop’s delicious snake soup which has a supposed myriad of health benefits.
Recommended dishes: Snake soup or preserved sausage