The Last 25 Dai Pai Dong in Hong Kong

Although Hong Kong is renowned for offering a wide variety of food genre and that it has attracted thousands of gourmets to visit the city, it is gradually losing one of its local dining culture – Dai Pai Dong. The name Dai Pai Dong means “restaurant with a big licence plate”, referring to the size of the licences, which are bigger than those of other licensed street vendors. Totally opposite to the Michelins, Dai Pai Dong are outdoor food stalls where you sit on a plastic tools, hearing people around you chatting and laughing. We should not over criticize the quality of the food but Dai Pai Dong definitely represents the spirit of Hong Kong. It is a place where people social, especially in mid-nights when most restaurants are closed, Dai Pai Dong are still full of people. Here is a short clip showing what Dai Pai Dong looks like nowadays:

The History of Dai Pai Dong

Indeed, the origin of Dai Pai Dong embedded a rather miserable history. The first licences were issued after the second world war to relatives of civil servants who had been killed or disabled in the war, allowing them to open small restaurants on the street and make a living. In the 1950s, Dai Pai Dong became a trend and you can find them almost in every corner of the street. People would gather and social until midnight. Soon, noise, hygiene and traffic led to complaints from the nearby residents. Since then Government decided to buy back some of the licenses and some cost over one million dollars. As at today, there are only 25 Dai Pai Dong left in Hong Kong: 11 in Sham Shui Po, 10 in Central, three in Wan Chai and 1 in Tai O, according to the Food and Environmental Hygiene Department, which manages the licences.


Since the number of Dai Pai Dong in Hong Kong is gradually diminishing, you should at least visit one of them no matter you live or visit Hong Kong in order to feel this unique local culture. In the next 10, 20 or 30 years, we may not even recall what Dai Pai Dong is.

If you are in doubt of which one to go to, you must try Sing Heung Yuen 2 Mei Lun St, Central, tel: 2544 8368

This definitely top the list because of its reasonable price, convenient location, together with its renowned tomato broth that is claimed to have been slowly boiled for 24 hours.During lunch hours, you will see a long queue of white collars so avoid visiting the store at those hours. The must-try menu is instant noodles or macaroni in tomato broth, lemon and honey crispy bun, milk tea.

Marco, 7 November, 2011 via Flickr, Creative Commons Attribution

Marco, 7 November, 2011 via Flickr, Creative Commons Attribution

Indeed, Hong Kong citizens now demand better quality of food, as well as dining environment; that is why these traditional Dai Pai Dong are disappearing one by one. They are certainly an important cultural heritage of Hong Kong and embedded plenty of stories of the locals. Should they vanish within the city, it will be a pity.

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    Why is Hong Kong renowned for its fascinating nightlife activities? The answer is because the city's lights are never off. To relieve stress after long working hours, Hongkongnese enjoys meeting friends after dinner at bars for cocktail as well as meeting new friends. The spectacular night view on skyscrapers gives Hong Kong bars a unique experience…
    Tags: hong, kong, written

Asia’s World City x its best rooftop bars

Why is Hong Kong renowned for its fascinating nightlife activities? The answer is because the city’s lights are never off. To relieve stress after long working hours, Hongkongnese enjoys meeting friends after dinner at bars for cocktail as well as meeting new friends. The spectacular night view on skyscrapers gives Hong Kong bars a unique experience that no other cities can give. There are several rooftop bars in Hong Kong that you must go to if you live or visit the city.

1. Sevva (Address: Prince’s Building 25th Floor 10 Chater Road Central, Hong Kong, 10 Chater Road, Hong Kong)

Although it might not be the tallest, it is definitely one of the most swankiest in town. It boasts an absolutely spectacular wraparound terrace with amazing views of the skyline, particularly of Norman Foster’s HSBC building and I.M. Pei’s distinctive China Bank. A variety of cocktails are offered. If you visit the bar, you must try the Kama Sultra cocktail, this is a rum-laced mix of passion fruit, mango and lime. Not just offering amazing night view, music together with cocktail in the evening, Sevva serves one of the best cakes in town during tea time as well!

2. Ozone (Address: Level 118 The Ritz-Carlton, 1 Austin Road West, Hong Kong)

This is the highest bar on the planet – level 118 at a 5 stars hotel. As you are travelling up by an elevator, you begin to feel the height. The interior is designed by Japanese architect agency Wonderwall, a company with a reputation for creating cool spaces (most notably the Bape stores). To make the most out of your time with Ozone, do drink their signature Dragontinis or a flute or two of champagne. You will soon be lost within the wonderful atmosphere and might find some difficulties in making way down to the Ground.

Adrian R. Tan, 30 January, 2013 via Flickr, Creative Commons Attribution

Adrian R. Tan, 30 January, 2013 via Flickr, Creative Commons Attribution

3. RED (Address: 2 IFC, 8 Finance Street, Hong Kong)

A combination of outdoor and indoor rooftop settings at IFC mall that immediately grabs your heart because of breathtaking views of Kowloon Peninsula and Victoria Habour and the Hong Kong skyline. It really offers an astonishing panorama view of the city with DJs playing house and funk music. The crowd is usually composed of professionals who work in Central and nearby areas so it is a good opportunity to meet some new, interesting friends. The bar offers variety cocktails a friendly prices. For ladies, I highly recommend Strawberry Blond, which is lemon vodka with fresh strawberries and ginger. A sip and you would be completely in love.

Andrew Kippen, 22 May 2008 via Flickr, Creative Commons Attribution

Andrew Kippen, 22 May, 2008 via Flickr, Creative Commons Attribution

I hope that you will like one of these recommendations. Please feel the vibe and energy of this Asia’s world city!

Be adventurous – where to find Hong Kong Street Food?

Hong Kong street food is something that you will not be able to find at anywhere else in the world and you will need to be adventurous enough to be able to conquer it. Hong Kong street food can be found at hawkers on the streets, from egg custard tarts, fish balls, siu mai to intestines. This becomes an important diet of the Hong Kong citizens because of their busy lifestyle and the price of food is very cheap.  Just simply “Grab and Go” .

One of the easiest spots to find Hong Kong street food is at Wanchai, by walking down the staircase right outside MTR Exit A5. There will be a chain of Hong Kong street food hawkers. Highly recommend you to try curry fish ball (HKD8- per skewer), siu mai (HKD10- per skewer), pig intestine (HKD12- per portion). To ensure you will find the right place, you may show the video to people and ask for direction, they will recognize the place.

Happy food hunting!

The Best Grilled Burgers In Hong Kong

Whilst burgers have been misunderstood as the number one junk food in the past, it is trending pretty hard in Hong Kong right now. So, what is the reason behind?

Hong Kong is particularly fond of the American lifestyle and this is why we see all the American brands being so successful in Hong Kong. These include electronics such as Apple, fashion brands such as Abercrombie & Fitch, American Eagle Outfitters. A lot of their flagships were opened in our city lately. Food culture has become part of the trend and burger is definitely making people going out of fashion. has recently released the list of the 10 best burgers in Hong Kong. It is expected that The Butcher’s Club at Wan Chai has topped the list. I personally made a visit to the shop last Saturday night, the length of the queue and the volume of people ordering take-away completely shocks me.  I must admit that its Double Happiness (HKD160 each), together with duck fat fries (HKD20 per portion) are so far the best in Hong Kong; the dry-aged beef is absolutely juicy and delicious. As image is always strong than words, it is difficult to describe in words how this mouth-watering burger tastes, so a photo of the burger is attached below.


Full artical is available here:


The Best Buffets To Celebrate Christmas

Unlike the Western tradition, Hong Kong families would celebrate their Christmas meal with buffets instead of homemade turkey etc.. I guess you hear the word buffet much less commonly in other parts of the world apart from this Asia’s World City. So, as a simple explanation, buffet gives you a great chance to try a full table of first class food of different genre. If you are still in doubt, simply check out the video below.

A good buffet would be decided based on the quality of the food, the variety it offers, the environment as well as the service of the restaurant. Most importantly, whether it is value for money. Cafe Too at Island Shangri-La (a five star hotel at Admiralty)  has always been voted as the best buffet in Hong Kong. For lunch, it is HKD328 (plus 10% service fee) per an adult. For dinner, it is HKD789 (plus 10% service fee) per an adult.

Since Christmas is a popular festival in Hong Kong, you will need to make the booking 1 month in advance. You may make a reservation at +852 2820 8571 now.

Check out other buffets here:

The Best Dim Sum in Hong Kong

Dim Sum, a.k.a. “yum cha” is a tradition originated from the Province of Guangdong, which has become one of the most common dining habit in Hong Kong. Whilst you are staying in Hong Kong, you should not have missed this out. If you want to know what to eat and where to find it, you have definitely found the right place. There will also be a little surprise if you read this post carefully.

Here is the 5 most popular dim sum here in Hong Kong:

1) Steamed Shrimp Dumpling

2) Shao Mai “Pork Dumpling”

3) Barbecued Pork Bun

4) Cheung Fen “Vermicelli Roll”

5) Spring Rolls

Dim Sum

Full reading is here:

 A surprise “shao mai” recipe – Credits to Josephine’s recipe.

Believe it or not, you will only need 30 mins for homemade “shao mai”. 


The Best Restaurants To Enjoy the Hong Kong National Day Fireworks

On 1st October 2014, Hong Kong will be celebrating its National Day. Not just about celebrating with national anthem and Hong Kongers enjoying a day-off, what makes it more exciting is that the beautiful Victoria Harbour will be showcasing the 17th anniversary fireworks display at 9pm.

If you wonder what it looks like, here is the glimpse of the evening back in 2o12.

If you wish to watch this at a comfortable environment, together with your friends and family, you may choose to find some tranquil spots to enjoy this moment, such as a nice restaurant. In order to avoid the last minute fuss of finding a restaurant that gives this special scenery, here is a few handy recommendations and you will be able to find one that suits you.

1) Best Value for Money – Bistro Laurent Tourondel

Food Genre: Western buffet; Location: Tsim Sha Tsui; Price: HKD688 per head

2) Family Fun – DUETTO

Food Genre: Italian & Indian; Location: Wan Chai; Price HKD350 per head

3) Steak Lover’s favourite – WOOLOOMOOLOO PRIME

Food Genre: Steak house; Location: Tsim Sha Tsui; HKD1,200 per head

4) Spectacular Bird’s view – ToTT’s and Roof Terrace

Food Genre: Western semi-buffet; Location: Causeway Bay; Price: HKD988 per head

5) All Time Favourite – AQUA

Food Genre: Japanese & Italian; Location: Tsim Sha Tsui; Price: HKD1,388 per head

6) Budget Viewers – IFC Rooftop

For a hassle-free and cheaper option, you can just easily grab some food and drinks from IFC mall and enjoy them at the garden on IFC rooftop. There are a variety of bars located on the rooftop that you may think about pre-booking a table. RED is a highly recommended place.

It is better to book 2 weeks in advance so you can secure a reservation at your preferred restaurant.