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6 best spots for Northern Chinese cuisine in Hong Kong

By David Yeung 16 September 2020 | Last Updated 18 January 2024

Header image courtesy of Jose Nicdao (via Flickr)

Originally published by David Yeung. Last updated by Celia Lee. 

China is a country where regional differences are reflected in its food. Boasting a vast geographical landscape, the style of cooking can be divided into two main styles: northern and southern. In the north, the food is hearty, salty, and starchy, with wheat as the main staple due to the harsher climate. In comparison, in the south, rice is the main staple, and the food is generally lighter and sweeter, with more vegetables. However, this is just an oversimplification of Chinese cuisine and there are many more factors to take into consideration, such as ethnicity and spiritual leanings.

In Hong Kong, the main style of cooking focuses less on spice and more on the freshness and natural flavours of the ingredients. There are plenty of restaurants all over the city that serve amazing Cantonese dishes, but have you ever considered Northern Chinese food? Authentic Northern Chinese food is not as common here in Hong Kong, but it still exists in small pockets. Here are a few places in Hong Kong where you can try Northern Chinese cuisine.

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Photo: 清真牛肉館 Islam Food (九龍城打鼓嶺道33-35號, Hong Kong, Hong Kong) (via Facebook)

Islam Food

Islam Food is located in the centre of Kowloon City, and from the name of the restaurant, you can probably already guess what it has on offer: Chinese Islamic food. Islam Food has been in operation since the 1950s and presents a wide range of deliciously prepared halal Chinese food. Although this restaurant prepares a variety of different foods from all over China, its most well-known dish is the beef pocket—which the restaurant makes fresh daily—as well as the signature dumplings, scallion pancakes, and the beef brisket. People from all walks of life come here, making it a very popular destination around the Kowloon City area.

Islam Food, G/F, 33–35 Tak Ku Ling Road, Sung Wong Toi | (+852) 2382 1882


Tian Shan Xiao Guan (天山小館)

Situated on Mercury Street in Tin Hau, Tian Shan Xiao Guan (天山小館) specialises in Northern Chinese cuisine from Xinjiang. Xinjiang food has a lot of emphasis on lamb, starch, and various spices—this is due to its ethnic Uyghur population, which highly influences its flavours. Tian Shan Xiao Guan offers a diverse menu filled with regional favourites, such as big-plate chicken, homestyle dumplings, spicy cumin lamb skewers, and much more.

Tian Shan Xiao Guan (天山小館), Shop A, 12 Mercury Street, Tin Hau | (+852) 2805 6130

Photo: @thatdianetail_w11 (via Instagram)

Wang Fu (王府)

Dumplings are an integral part of Chinese cuisine as a whole, but even this modest food can see regional variations. In the north of China, the dumpling wrapping can be much thicker, while the filling tends to be meatier. Wang Fu (王府) is a small restaurant that specialises in Northern Chinese staples. Conveniently located in Central, it is the perfect place for a quick bite. Make sure to try the pork and chive dumplings, a classic dish on the menu.

Wang Fu (王府), G/F, 65 Wellington Street, Central

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Photo: 餃子源 Dumpling Yuan (via Facebook)

Northern Dumpling Yuan (北方餃子源)

Situated just next door to Wang Fu is Northern Dumpling Yuan (北方餃子源), a humble restaurant that offers a myriad of delicious noodle dishes, but is best known for its simplistic and handmade dumplings. Like Wang Fu, this is another no-frills place to grab something quick when hungry. Whether you are going for the lamb and green onion, beef and celery, or pork and chive dumplings, all options are fantastically flavoured and priced affordably.

Northern Dumpling Yuan (北方餃子源), 69 Wellington Street, Central | (+852) 2525 9018


Happy Lamb Hot Pot (快樂小羊火鍋料理)

Northern China is home to some of the coldest weather in the country, and warming dishes such as hot pot are staples in the freezing wintertime. Widely popular in Hong Kong, hot pot lovers can try out its northern variant at Happy Lamb Hot Pot in Mong Kok and Causeway Bay. Highlights of the menu include a selection of lamb-based items such as the lamb assortment platter and hot dishes such as lamb skewers and steak. The lamb used at Happy Lamb is sourced directly from Mongolia.

Happy Lamb Hot Pot (快樂小羊火鍋料理), locations across Hong Kong


Ba Yi Restaurant (巴依餐廳)

Tucked away at the end of Water Street in Sai Ying Pun, Ba Yi Restaurant (巴依餐廳) specialises in cuisine from Xinjiang. Visitors are welcomed into a homey environment boasting Northern Chinese interiors, complete with a stretched canvas map of the Silk Road hung up on the wall. The restaurant offers a selection of lamb-based dishes, all made for sharing. Expect a wide variety of menu items that highlight authentic flavours and a belly-warming experience, such as the traditional stewed lamb, roasted lamb kebab, spicy chicken stew, and lamb milk pudding with almond.

Ba Yi Restaurant (巴依餐廳), G/F, 43 Water Street, Sai Ying Pun | (+852) 2484 9981

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David Yeung


Born and raised in Hong Kong, David is a recent high school graduate embarking on a gap year. He is always interested in writing and sharing stories that tend to be unnoticed. When he is not in the office typing away, you may find him taking photographs, running around the city, hiking, swimming in the ocean, or just chilling with a nice book at bay.