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International communities shaping the taste buds of Hong Kong

Localiiz
  • Written by Localiiz

Thanks to the diversity of numerous ethnic communities in the city, Hong Kong is a hotbed for fascinating cuisines from all around the world. With such easy access to an eclectic mix of culture and authentic food, whether you’re dining at no-frills eateries or world-class restaurants, city dwellers, as well as tourists, can experience an exciting gastronomic journey like never before.

Kytaly

Italy — Central

In Central and Western districts on Hong Kong Island, you’ll find a multitude of Western cuisines lining the streets. A cuisine that’s undeniably prominent in these areas, however, is Italian food. In Central, you’ll find Italian restaurants of all shapes and sizes for every price range. With the growing number of Italian expats living and working around SoHo, the demand for authentic, high-quality Italian eateries follows. Discover authentic handmade pasta at Pici  and three-Michelin-star Italian fine-dining restaurant  8 ½ Otto e Mezzo Bombana . For those looking for Italian-American classics, give Carbone a try for their signature Spicy Rigatoni alla Vodka. 

Cambo Thai

Thailand — Kowloon City

For a taste of authentic Thai food, head over to Kowloon City, a.k.a. 'Hong Kong’s Little Thailand'. This pocket of Hong Kong is a lively food paradise filled with over 40 Thai restaurants and grocery stores, most of which are managed by generations of Thai-speaking ethnic Chinese families. The best way to reach Kowloon City is to hop on green minibus 39M from Lok Fu MTR station; expect to bump into die-hard foodies who are also on the search for the best Thai food in town. 

Whether you’re craving a piping hot bowl of tom yum goong, some mouth-watering Hainanese chicken, or mango sticky rice, settle down at one of the long-time favourite restaurants, such as Cambo Thai Restaurant and Amporn Thai Food, before picking up some Thai herbs, pastes, and groceries at Ruamjai Thai Grocery. Read Kowloon City’s Little Thailand for an in-depth insider’s guide to Kowloon City.

Manakamana

Nepal — Jordan

Continuing your foodie adventure in Kowloon, you’ll find a number of Nepalese restaurants nestled around Temple Street in Jordan and Yau Ma Tei. After the Gurkha Nepalese soldiers that served in the British army were transferred to Hong Kong in the mid 20th century, many chose to stay and reside in the district. Nowadays, you can find many Nepalese restaurants scattered within Jordan, serving authentic home-style Nepalese food. 

These restaurants generally open in the afternoon and don’t close until early morning, catering for young Nepalis who work in the nightlife industry. To tourists, this means the possibility of snacking late at night after a long day of shopping or sight-seeing. Two must-try dishes include momos, a chicken or pork-filled Nepalese-style dumpling, and panipuri, a deep-fried hollowed crêpe filled with vegetables, potatoes, and chickpeas. While most restaurants such as Manakamana Nepali Restaurant and Sayapatree are decorated with fuss-free, traditional interiors, other eateries like Funky Monkey show a much more modern approach by decorating the space with cosy pillows and colourful neon lights while serving the same delicious momos with a side of Hawaiian cocktails.

Mr Korea BBQ

Korea — Tsim Sha Tsui

From Kowloon City to Jordan and now Tsim Sha Tsui, you’ll find numerous shopping malls, small boutiques, watering holes, and quaint Little Korea (or Korean Street). Located on Kimberley Street, the Korean community in Hong Kong has been living in this neighbourhood since the 1960s, resulting in a large number of Korean restaurants and grocery stores. In recent years, the appetite for Korean food has also been growing in Hong Kong due to the rise of K-pop culture, encouraging even more Korean eateries to pop up in the area. 

Today, you can find all sorts of homey Korean food available, from Mr Korea BBQ for Korean-style barbecue to Changwon Korean Restaurant for sweet and savoury japchae, a stir-fried glass noodle dish with mixed vegetables, and Korean rice rolls, gimbap. 

Mita Seimen-sho

Japan — Causeway Bay

Aside from Chinese food, the one cuisine that has been dominating the Hong Kong food scene would be Japanese cuisine. With Japanese food being in such high demand, you’re never too far away from a sushi or ramen joint in the city. With that said, Causeway Bay is the best place to be for a wide range of Japanese cuisines in close proximity. For the best ramen in town, head to Mita Seimen-sho for some appetising dipping ramen, or Butao Ramen to try its famous Hakata-style ramen with extra-flavourful pork bone broth. Those who value quantity can try the popular all-you-can-eat Japanese restaurant, Deluxe Daieiki, for a filling meal. And if you’re one to splurge, try the exquisite omakase meals at Maizuru to experience Japanese fine dining at its best. From izakaya-style spots such as Yardbird in Sheung Wan to popular conveyor belt sushi chains that attract hungry crowds, Japanese food is undeniably one of the most sought-after cuisines in Hong Kong.

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The Hong Kong Tourism Board disclaims any liability as to the quality or fitness for purpose of third party products and services; and makes no representation or warranty as to the accuracy, adequacy or reliability of any information contained herein.

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