If you find yourself heading to your flight on an empty stomach every time you travel from Hong Kong International Airport, the question is why? Ranked 1st as the Best Airport for Dining in the world’s best airport list 2019, it goes without saying that HKG is home to a plethora of delicious restaurants. We’re talking outlets of Michelin-starred restaurants, tasty Chinese cuisine, top-notch burgers and Insta-worthy desserts. So the next time you travel, do yourself a favour, check in earlier and treat yourself to some good food before facing that in-flight meal. By Sarah Moran and Ann Chiu and Angel Hong
RECOMMENDED: Make your trip a whole lot easier with our guide to getting through Hong Kong airport stress-free.
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Chao Inn retains the classic flavours of Chiuchow cuisine while incorporating various new elements and ideas to create innovative dishes and snacks. The restaurant’s modern interior design enhances the contemporary vibe going on. The soya platters, hometown fried oysters and eight-treasure rice pudding are all crowd-pleasers.
Popular xiao long bao chain Crystal Jade is home to a variety of Beijing, Sichuan and Shanghai dishes as well as made to order Lanzhou hand-pulled noodles. Its signature dishes include delicious xiao long bao dumplings – the thin wrappings filled with hot soup and juicy meat – spicy dan-dan noodles and healthy, refreshing braised mushroom with tofu.
Landing its first Hong Kong branch in the bustling arrivals hall of Hong Kong International Airport, Wolfgang Puck Kitchen is dedicated to bringing its renowned Californian-inspired casual fine dining cuisine to the discerning travellers on the go. Featuring hearty American-style breakfasts and comfort dishes with an Asian twist – such as the signature smoked salmon bagel, bacon wrapped meatloaf and crab cakes – this place is perfect for a delectable getaway from the busy terminal.
Founded in 1946, Ho Hung Kee, once a humble street stall, was the first Hong Kong wonton noodle shop to be recommended by Michelin. Whether it’s the wonton’s size, colour or taste, or the texture of the noodles and the density of the soup, Ho Hung Kee still uses traditional cooking techniques when preparing its food and the quality is evident. Aside from noodles, they also serve a variety of dim sum and congee.
The North Point original was awarded one Michelin star for five consecutive years and garnered fame for its soy-braised dishes. Baubles aside, Hung’s Delicacies provides quality food at a relatively affordable price. Some of the must-eats include the braised vegetables with bean curd, marinated goose slices, drunken duck tongue and Chua Lam-style mixed noodles.
Serving authentic traditional Korean cuisine, Sorabol’s seafood and vegetables are air-shipped from Korea every week. The Korean barbecue joint offers more than 10 meal packages, complete with banchan nibbles. If you have the time, opt for the barbecue and get the beef ribs. Don’t miss their selection of Korean roasted chicken and wine, too.
The original Sham Shui Po branch has received the Michelin Guide’s Bib Gourmand award these last few years and punters flock there to sample its signature Hainanese chicken rice. The airport outpost of this iconic Thai restaurant boasts similar quality food and echoes the SSP venue with its green décor and two-room setting.
Though this branch of the Japanese Mitsui-Mitada Noodles Factory doesn’t offer the brand’s signature tsukemen noodles, they do at least have eight different types of ramen you can choose from – such as original flavour, spicy, black sesame oil and curry – that get combined with the ever-popular tonkotsu soup base. Order your ramen on its own or in a set with dumplings or a fried pork chop. Alternatively, the hot-plate fried rice or curry rice aren’t bad either.
If you’re a fan of classic Hong Kong tea time snacks, head to Tsui Wah and have a cup of HK-style milk tea paired with a crispy bun topped with condensed milk. The popular local chain serves all your Hong Kong favourites with efficiency and to a decent standard. You can’t go wrong with the fish balls served with ho fan, the Swiss chicken wings or the Malay curry beef brisket rice.
This popular chain of Vietnamese restaurants has more than 20 outlets all over Hong Kong and serves staples such as pho, cold vermicelli noodles and curry with red rice. The soup bases here are made from fresh beef bones and a supposedly secret recipe. Viet Choice’s beef and sliced brisket pho, Vietnamese-style beef shank noodle soup, lemongrass chicken wings and fried shrimp cake are all a must-try.
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As a Michelin-starred Cantonese restaurant, Duddell’s not only serves delectable dishes that satisfy your cravings for local food, but it also offers to tantalise busy travellers by making its premium cuisine more approachable within a casual setting. An extensive menu of freshly made dim sum, barbecued meats and Cantonese dishes are served in bento boxes, and a selection of curated Hong Kong classic milk tea, YuanYang, cold-pressed juices and beers are also available in bottles for grab-and-go.
Gordon Ramsay Plane Food To Go is an exclusive reimagining of celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay’s Plane Food restaurant at London Heathrow. Offering a range of British-style comfort foods in a grab-and-go format, this place is excellent for a quick and delightful refreshment. Their signatures include the full English breakfast box, short-rib burger and chicken meatball pasta, which are all freshly made from ingredients imported from the UK.
A prestigious Michelin-starred Shanghainese restaurant brand, Jardin de Jade seeks to serve authentic regional Chinese and Shanghainese flavours with a novel twist. Apart from dishes for casual dining, you can also enjoy a few sips of alcoholic drinks at its majestically decorated bar. The house special steamed juicy pork dumplings and the classic Cosmopolitan cocktail is a must-try pairing on the menu.
Opened in 1969, Baikohken Ramen was the first restaurant to receive the prestigious Asahikawa Best Ramen Award. Fast forward to 2012 and the ramen joint finally made its way to Hong Kong, offering locals its signature tonkotsu soup made with chicken, sardines and kelp to make it extra sweet. Like the restaurant in Japan, the soup base here comes in your choice of soy sauce, miso or salt. Don’t miss the quality gyoza and fried chicken either.
Seating up to 120 people, the airport outlet of this popular burger chain offers meat lovers from around the world the chance to chow down on signature gourmet burgers and creations exclusive to Hong Kong International Airport such as the char siu burger (pictured), Hong Kong Breakfast Toastie – an HK-style breakfast dish with macaroni, cheese and béchamel slathered between crispy thick-cut toast – and a delicious milk tea crème brûlée.
Caviar House & Prunier is one of the world’s leading premium food brands with products like caviar from Bordeaux and the famous Balik smoked salmon of the Swiss Alps. Here, not only can you buy souvenirs, but can also sample fresh oysters with top-quality caviar and other equally decadent food. It doesn’t hurt that they have a stunning 180-degree view of the airfield outside.
While it’s difficult to compete with the stranglehold that the Mak family has with its wonton noodle shops all over town, Chee Kei does a good job cooking up excellent wonton noodles all its own. Famous for serving high-quality ‘sai yung’ – a miniature bowl with only a few wontons and a mouthful of noodles – Chee Kei also serves congee, fried rice, noodles and various Chinese sweet soups such as a mulberry red date egg soup.
The US-based gourmet food store finally opens its first location in Hong Kong. Located at the HKIA, you can pick up hearty and filling hot sandwiches – ranging from roast beef with caramelised pumpkin to buffalo chicken with ranch dressing –fresh salads or a light snack on your way to catch your flight. Bascially, you’re looking for a higher quality version of Starbucks food, Dean & Deluca are your guys.
This super popular confectioner’s airport branch is its fifth opening in Hong Kong. Nothing screams jet-setter than indulging in a variety of sweet cakes before heading to your gate. Customers can also get their hands on frozen mille crêpes cakes, sold exclusively at the airport shop, to snack on during their flight. Each frozen cake is individually sealed, comes with insulation bags and an appropriate amount of dry ice, so you can enjoy it on both long-haul and short-haul flights.
This sports bar and restaurant serves up mainly American food where you can tuck into Mexican corn flakes, fish and chips, sirloin sandwiches and Buffalo wings as you wait for your flight. There’s plenty of bar tables for diners to catch live games and matches in a comfortable environment. Why not order up a couple of pints while you’re at it.