Header image courtesy of @scarlett_hk (via Instagram)
Originally published by Annette Chan. Last updated by Alisa Chau and Min Ji Park.
With just a few ingredients—beef, an egg yolk, and a variety of customisable seasonings like onions, capers, and Worcestershire sauce—steak tartare might seem simple, but fans of the raw dish will know that not every version is made equal.
A good steak tartare, whether it’s the more rustic variant found in French bistros or a fine-dining version dotted with caviar, has to have the right texture, mouthfeel, and balance of flavours—and that’s before you even get to the all-important quality of the beef.
As a result, the risk of getting a gamey or bland steak tartare is pretty high—so instead of taking the chance next time you’ve got a craving for steak tartare, why not check out some of our favourite versions in Hong Kong?
As befitting its bovine theme, Beefbar has gone all out on its steak tartare menu, which comprises not one, but seven different variations of the dish. Purists can go with the OG “bistro-style” tartare ($280), but we’d recommend the more unconventional milk-fed veal filet, tarragon, and praline tartare ($280) if you like aniseed or even the tuna, veal, oyster, and caviar tartare ($490) for a taste of luxury.
For uber-special occasions, you can even request the hand-cut tartare, which involves a member of staff whipping up a huge 200-gramme portion of steak tartare on a tableside trolley to your exact preference from premium cuts of American black Angus filet ($780), Australian Wagyu filet ($820), and Korean filet ($1,280).
Beefbar, 2/F, Club Lusitano, 16 Ice House Street, Central | (+852) 2110 8853
For a classic take, drop by this convivial French wine bar and restaurant in Tsim Sha Tsui. Its tartare à la Montmartre ($198) is a simple, well-seasoned rendition made with beef tenderloin (hand-cut for better texture, naturally), onions, Dijon mustard, parsley, and Worcestershire sauce, topped with a sunshine-yellow egg yolk, and served alongside crispy French fries. There are no frills here, just casual and comforting bistro-style fare.
Scarlett, 2 Austin Avenue, Tsim Sha Tsui | (+852) 3565 6513
Its name a dedication to the owners’ late grandmother, Jean May is an underrated gem tucked away in a Wan Chai alley. Its comforting and fresh bistro fare give their version of the steak tartare ($198) a homely touch, without detracting from the deep flavours the come with such a decadent item. Beautifully presented with several pieces of toasted crostini, the rough-cut beef is seasoned through with specks of capers to add a zesty bite.
Jean May, Shop A, 14 Gresson Street, Wan Chai | (+852) 3590 6033
For a unique reinvention of beef tartare, Vietnamese eatery Xuân is sure to blow you away. Its bò tái chanh tartare ($138) coats prime beef in Vietnamese coriander oil before dusting the dish in salted egg yolk, and plating up the meat alongside a raw quail egg served in its half-cracked shell plus a Vietnamese rice cracker to enjoy as a vessel.
Xuân, 24 Luen Fat Street, Lun Fat Street, Wan Chai | (+852) 2891 1177
Looking for a panoramic view alongside your meal? Flaunting food as grand as the restaurant’s sweeping vistas of Victoria Harbour and beyond, the tartare of Angus beef fillet ($188) at Harbourside Grill is prepared tableside for your additional viewing pleasure. Seasoned per your own preference with options like onions and Tabasco sauce, crowned with an egg yolk, and served with grilled sourdough, this tartare is elevated yet rustic.
Harbourside Grill, Level 4, Ocean Terminal, Harbour City, Tsim Sha Tsui | (+852) 2619 9100
When you need a superb glass of wine to pair with your French bistro fare, head to Le Bistro Winebeast, where a seasonal menu and a curated wine list awaits. Chef Léa Cantalloube presents a 150-gramme beef tartare ($188) that is hand-chopped, well-seasoned, and topped with a beautifully golden yolk. A classic yet modern rendition served with your choice of fries or salad on the side, this dish is a signature of the restaurant.
Le Bistro Winebeast, G/F, Newman House, 35–45 Johnston Road, Wan Chai | (+852) 2782 6689