3 Must-Have Meals in Hong Kong

I spent the past week in Hong Kong on business, which means I primarily saw the inside of a conference room. I managed, however, to have a few fabulous meals whilst visiting. If you’re ever in HK, I would definitely prioritise these! This was also an amazing trip to get to know my new team in the APAC eCommerce group so all the smiling, laughing, face-stuffing people you see are my fabulously fun and super smart colleagues. One thing we clearly have in common: EATING.

The Chairman
This authentic cantonese restaurant was excellent and is considered one of the top 50 restaurants in all of Asia. Yea, across the entire continent. It’s beloved on TripAdvisor, and I’m here to tell you it’s absolutely true. I went full-out adventuresome on a few of the dishes including trying a slimy ol’ century egg and eating fried prawns, head to tail. They also served some amazing soups, to-die-for crab and their signature dish:  spare ribs. Sadly, I did not get a pic of the ribs but you should get them and chow down.

Century Egg is an acquired taste.
Century Egg is an acquired taste and requires a lot of ginger. Like, a whole lot.

Fried prawn head is delicious and oh so crunchy.
Fried prawn head at The Chairman is delicious and oh-so perfectly crunchy.

The team that eats shrimp head together, stays together.
The team that eats shrimp head together, stays together.
Under Bridge Spicy Crab
I must admit, this isn’t my first visit to Under Bridge Spicy Crab in the Wan Chai district. I came here in 2014 with my previous team and couldn’t wait to revisit it during this trip. You must make sure of one thing when you arrive here: show up hungry. Do not snack beforehand. There is going to be a lot of food put in front of you and you’ll want to enjoy it all. It’s best known for its namesake, spicy crab, which is completely covered in the most salty and tasty fried garlic you’ll ever experience. Definitely not a date night kind of place, if you know what I mean. Aside from the spicy crab, you’ll want to try the razor clams and their incredible hot and sour soup. Damn. I’m getting hungry now.

There are apparently knock-off restaurants and I'm not sure I've even been the real one.
There are apparently knock-off restaurants and I’m not sure I’ve even been the real one.

IMG_1888
The spicy crab is covered in garlic and spring onions that you’ll be eating it by the spoonful.

I even tried mantis shrimp, which was delicious but tugged a heart string as it's one of my favorite creatures to see on a dive.
I even tried mantis shrimp, which was delicious but tugged a heart string as it’s one of my favorite creatures to see on a dive.

The razor clams look a bit odd but are stunningly garlicky and a nice texture.
The razor clams look a bit odd but are stunningly garlicky and a nice texture.
The Optimist
Oh. My. Gawd. Every single plate that came out here at The Optimist in Wan Chai was delightful. This restaurant serves Northern Spanish fare, expertly prepared. I did not take any photos of the food (partially because of the lighting but mostly because I showed up inebriated from a wine education and tasting session that had occurred immediately prior #grin). I’m here to tell you, however, that the dishes were astounding and are all must-tries: Iberian ham croquettes, spanish prawns, burrata and raf tomato, chorizo ‘al vino’, charcoal grilled flat-iron steak, grilled pork ribs…you can’t go wrong. Pair these with some lovely red Spanish wines and you will remember this meal forever.

My only shot of The Optimist. It was incredible, I tell you. INCREDIBLE.
My only shot of The Optimist. It was incredible, I tell you. INCREDIBLE.
So there you have it! If you’re in Hong Kong on a short business or leisure trip and only have a few opportunities to go out, I would strongly recommend these three fabulous restaurants. Not only is the food wonderful but they are all genuinely great places for socialising with a team and getting to know each other. Bon appetite! -JW

 

 

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