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We’re at the height of Hong Kong summer now, with weeks of relentless rain, oppressing humidity, and soggy shoes. But as dreary as the weather may be, your taste buds don’t have to settle for drab flavours, especially since travelling around the world is off the table for the foreseeable future. Make your Hong Kong summer a little more bearable with the most exciting new restaurants and menus to be found this August.
Presented by the up-and-coming dining group behind High Street favourites Flying Pig Bistro, Flying Pig Deli Social, El Macho, and Lobster Shack, Ninjito is the latest opening in a string of restaurants that seem destined to leave an indelible mark on Soho palates. Helmed by chef Sean Mell, formerly of Nobu and Silencio, Ninjito brings the best of casual Japanese comfort food to the streets of Hong Kong, packaged in upbeat interiors of vibrant murals, patterned parasols, and whimsical samurai figurines.
For a restaurant that prides itself on its yakitori and wagyu-based recipes, the vegetarian offerings at Ninjito are surprisingly solid. Highlights of the menu include the mouthwatering Wagyu Sando ($248) and the plant-based Impossible Beef Sando ($148)—its vegetarian-friendly counterpart—while the Chicken Kaarage ($108) and Corn Tempura ($118) are fast becoming bestsellers. Don’t miss the Vegetarian Ceviche ($118), a colourful and refreshing concoction rarely seen in Hong Kong, as well as the Plant-based Ramen ($98), a dandan noodle dish with Omnipork. Ninjito is also available for delivery via Deliveroo.
Ninjito Mexican Ninja, Basement, 67 Hollywood Road, Central | (+852) 2511 6860
Throw yourself into the maze of Wan Chai’s flower and fruit stalls and you may just come across one of Hong Kong’s most exciting new openings of the summer. Taking the best of her experience from the Michelin-starred kitchens of Pierre Koffmann, Michel Roux Jr, Philip Howard, and Eric Chavot, chef-patron Tiff Lo paints a delightful impression of a European neighbourhood bistro with Jean May.
For her first solo venture, French-inspired cuisine takes centre stage, spotlighting dishes such as Confit Chicken & Leek Terrine ($88), Duck Breast in a Spiced Honey Glaze with Carrots ($312), Salmon with Summer Vegetables ($178), Steak Baguette ($162), and baked-to-order Madeleines ($12 per piece). Doors open on 18 August with reservations available now.
Jean May, Shop A, 14 Gresson Street, Wan Chai | (+852) 3590 6033
Step through to John Nugent’s latest project, in which he transforms his luxurious H Code speakeasy into The Diplomat Café, a sumptuous experience that combines cocktails with indulgent nibbles. With amended hours of 12 pm to 6 pm to meet the temporary dining restrictions, The Diplomat Café shifts the spotlight on its standout food menu, showcasing all-day pub grub to please picky palates.
Evoking the rustic ambience of neighbourhood brasseries, tuck into a menu of refined snacks and hot dishes, available both for dine-in and takeaway. Patrons will delight at the nostalgic flavours of the Truffled Mac & Cheese ($90), loaded with a potent blend of black truffles, Gruyère, and Swiss cheeses, as well as the playful Nugent’s Nuggets ($100), a guilty-pleasure snack crafted with free-range organic chicken. For something that will truly linger on the taste buds, turn your attention to the remarkable Cubano ($170), a stacked sandwich made with crispy suckling pig, cheddar cheese, a slather of mustard, and arugula.
The Diplomat Café, LG/F, High Block, H Code, 45 Pottinger Street, Central | (+852) 3619 0302
Our newest churro contender steps into the ring! Helmed by two South American amigos, Twist & Buckle is Hong Kong’s one and only churrería, serving up classic, handcrafted dough knots with a modern “twist.”
Sink your teeth into authentic flavours like the El Churro Original ($22), a cinnamon-dusted, golden-fried loop that echoes the local bakeries of Latin America, and the modern and playful creations of Crunchy Matcha Churro ($35) and Aloha Churro ($48), a fruity combination of mango and passionfruit compote.
There’s even a mind-boggling Cookie Monster Churro ($58) on the menu, a vivid, blue-tinted churro in a cup of cookie crumble and creamy soft serve, complete with a rich layer of chocolate sauce. Offset all that sweetness with their housemade Lemonades ($36) for an unbeatable rollercoaster of flavours.
Twist & Buckle, 29–31 Chatham Road South, Tsim Sha Tsui
No one who has ever made a weekend trip out to Sai Kung would have missed the opportunity to pay a visit to Ali Oli, purveyors of Hong Kong’s finest European-style baked goods. After three decades of slinging bread and pastries from its Sai Kung café, Ali Oli launches its first virtual restaurant, Humble Pie, to bring their signature flavours to the rest of Hong Kong.
Based in Wong Chuk Hang, Humble Pie offers a range of affordable lunch options that the longstanding bakery is well-known for, including fresh pies, sandwiches, soups, salads, and delicious desserts. Get a taste of Ali Oli’s classic Aussie Meat Pie ($48) and delectable Smoked Salmon & Egg Mayo Sandwich ($60), available for both takeaway and delivery on Deliveroo. Humble Pie also focuses on plant-based dishes, such as the Grilled Vegetable Sandwich ($60) and Dairy-free Pumpkin Soup ($42).
Humble Pie, Unit C, 11/F, 44 Wong Chuk Hang Road, Wong Chuk Hang
This new addition technically started welcoming guests into its folds in July, but with everything that’s been going on, Club Rangoon didn’t quite receive the opening fanfare it should have—and it really should have. As one of Hong Kong’s only authentic Burmese restaurant, Club Rangoon is a lustrous and beautifully modern interpretation, combining traditional flavours with skilful presentation and elegant settings.
Clothed in lush shades of jade green and warm golden sheens, take in a slice of founder Nelson Htoo’s heritage along with your sumptuous meal. Helmed by chef Karisa Cheque in the kitchen and Jack Byrne at the bar, you can expect a menu of salads, small plates, noodles, large plates, sides, and desserts, with noteworthy dishes such as the Mohinga ($170), Burma’s national dish of thin rice noodles, lemongrass catfish broth, and fried split peas; La Phet Thoke ($120), a traditional salad of pickled tea leaves; and Wat Thani ($250), a Burmese pork stew that blends pork shoulder and pork belly with ginger and honey.
Club Rangoon, 33 Aberdeen Street, Central
There’s a new donburi place in town and it’s kind of... like poké? Bento Days is a brand-new online-only delivery concept that aims to bring what they call “Hawaiian donburi” to the doorsteps of hungry Hongkongers, brightening up the palates with refreshing flavours and light but filling meals.
Featuring bright and colourful toppings of sliced sashimi, seafood, steamed chicken, tempura shrimp, and more, treat yourself to delightful bowls of Rainbow Don with House Poké Dressing ($137), Lomi Lomi Don with Spicy Sauce ($115), Phoenix Don with Crispy Sauce ($111), and even vegetarian-friendly options like Green Don with Sweet & Sour Sauce ($98) with tofu, avocado, edamame, cucumber, pine nut, red onion, tomato, and seaweed.
If you’re sharing at home or in the office (or you’re going through a particularly hangry day, no judgment), opt for a combo set that feeds more, such as the 2 Don + Deluxe Sashimi Set ($258) or the 2 Don + Teriyaki Chicken with Avocado Salad Set ($200). Bento Days is now available for delivery on Deliveroo with up to 30 percent off on signature items to celebrate their grand opening!
Tai Wai’s best-kept secret makes its move to Hong Kong Island with a pop-up! Catch Xi Xup, a chic Vietnamese concept with bangin’ flavours, in Sai Ying Pun for a limited time only. Highly lauded for its bold take on street food, Xi Xup made a name for itself in the Sha Tin District and is now ready to take on the rest of Hong Kong with their Đà Lạt ‘Pizza’ ($78) and Mì Quảng ($98), a central Vietnamese noodle dish.
Inspired by the vibrant tastes of Saigon, must-tries on the menu include Cơm Tấm ($98), a melange of grilled pork chops, steamed duck egg meatloaf, and shredded pork skin with fresh veggies and pickles, and the toothsome Bò Lá Lốt ($78), grilled beef in betel leaves with pineapple-fermented fish sauce. Pair it off with a Cà Phê Cốt Dừa ($48), Xi Xup’s signature coconut coffee, to complement the savouries. Xi Xup’s pop-up in Sai Ying Pun caters to takeaway and delivery orders via Deliveroo.
Xi Xup pop-up, 32 Second Street, Sai Ying Pun | (+852) 5744 0887
If you missed the first Three Buns pop-up at Potato Head a few years ago, it’s time to pencil it into your calendar now and make sure you save space for its return. Back in Hong Kong for its second pop-up edition, the popular burger brand from Singapore and Jakarta brings seven signature buns and nine tropical Balinese-inspired cocktails and milkshakes to delight taste buds across the city.
Gourmet bites include the Baby Huey ($100), a stacked Angus beef burger; the Smokin’ B-boy ($138), a veritable skyscraper of beef patty, smoked Applewood cheddar, Dingley Dell beer & treacle streaky bacon, BBQ ketchup, smoky mayo, and bawang goreng; and the Omni Hustle Gong Pao ($98), a flaming hot creation of seared plant-based Omnipork patty with Inferno Sauce, kung pao catsup, ginger soya milk mayo, crushed cashews, and scallions.
Swill it all down with house-crafted cocktails, like the Tropics Old Fashioned ($80) with coconut fat-washed bourbon, the Indo-Bloody Mary ($80) with Balinese long pepper-infused Absolut vodka, and the Mai Tai ($80) with Potato Head spiced rum, pineapple, and almond. Three Buns Burgers & Cocktails is now available for dine-in, takeaway, and delivery via JIA Everywhere.
Three Buns pop-up, G/F, 100 Third Street, Sai Ying Pun | (+852) 5723 5668
Ready your sweet-tooths for delectable baked goods! From 28 August onwards all the way until early next year, Baked Indulgence will set up shop (a pop-up shop, that is) at IFC Mall, bringing its signature cookie creations offline to share with the masses. Well-known for their soft and chewy cookie selections, their Asian-flavoured twist on the classic American chocolate chip cookie has won them legions of fans city-wide, and with flavours like Milk Tea, Yuenyeung, and Sakura, what’s not to like?
Using Valrhona chocolate imported from France, Baked Indulgence crafts best-sellers like Red Velvet Nutella, Walnut, Matcha, Hojicha, and more. Throughout the pop-up period, returning devotees can delight in limited-edited flavours like Hong Kong-style Milk Tea, Pandan, and Strawberry Cheesecake, too. They even offer a range of vegan cookies for those who are following plant-based diets!
Baked Indulgence, LA2 Podium Level One, IFC Mall, 8 Finance Street, Central | (+852) 9706 0506