A quick look at the best restaurants in Central Hong Kong reads like a list of the world’s most decorated chefs thanks to the finance sector’s penchant for the finest things in life. Michelin stars are commonplace here, and it’s true that you could go fine dining every night of the week throughout your stay in Hong Kong and never have to leave Central. But that’s not all there is, as prominent Chinese restaurants have hung on despite the astronomical rental costs, serving genuine Cantonese cuisine but adapting to serve locals and foreigners.
The dining scene in downtown Hong Kong shifts like the tide but below are what we consider are Central’s best restaurants, whether you’re looking or an elegant degustation menu with wine pairing or a classic dim sum lunch sitting shoulder to shoulder with the locals.
Needless to say, reservations are obligatory at all of the fine dining restaurants in this list, and even the more everyday options will no doubt be packed day in, day out. This is dining, Central Hong Kong style!
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This was the first Chinese restaurant in the world to win three Michelin stars, so if you want the ultimate fine dining Cantonese meal in Central Hong Kong, it has to be Lung King Heen. Located in Four Seasons Hotel Hong Kong, the elegant dining room has stunning views over the waterfront, while the interior is decorated with palatial touches of silver and teak wood. Chef Chan Yan Tak specialises in lunchtime dim sum prepared with world delicacies such as abalone, king crab and black truffle. The service is impeccable; the height of sophistication. On weekdays, the lunch menu caters to business lunches so be sure to come on the weekend to get the full experience. The dinner menu is similarly superb, the highlight being classic Cantonese seafood dishes. Read More...
- Opening Hours: Lunch Mon - Sat 12:00 – 14:30 (Sundays and public holidays 11:30 – 15:00), Dinner 18:00 – 22:30 daily
- MRT: Central
- Address: Four Seasons Hong Kong, 8 Finance St, Central, Hong Kong
- Tel: +852 3196 8880
Superstar chef Joel Robuchon has racked up an incredible 28 Michelin stars from his collection of fine dining restaurants around the world, so what he doesn’t know about French haute cuisine isn’t worth knowing. His three Michelin starred ‘Atelier’ Hong Kong takes on the same ‘workshop’ theme as his other branches with most of the chairs surrounding the central kitchen adding some lively theatre to your meal. The menu also follows Chef Joel’s rich, technical and creative signature style. Try the small, tapas style a la carte offerings or go all out with the Discovery Menu with wine pairing. It is expensive but an unforgettable dining experience. The wine list is superb with some rare Grand Cru wines also available by the glass.
- Opening Hours: 18:00-late
- Location: The Landmark Hotel, Central
- Tel: +852 2166 9000
Modern, Asian fusion cuisine is served at Ho Lee Fook, a restaurant that takes a fun-loving and irreverent approach to food – as you might predict from the name! These days, fusion is a dirty word, but that’s due to the glut of sub-standard restaurant using the terms; however, Taiwanese Chef Jowett Yu has travelled the world earning his stripes as an excellent chef and his flavours are real treat for anyone who loves new, inventive flavours. Chinese-influenced dishes are certainly on the menu, such as dumplings and pork belly, but there’s also Hokaaido scallops and steak tartare, so just trust in Chef Jowett for a dining experience almost as memorable as the restaurant’s name.
- Opening Hours: Daily 18:00 – late
- Address: G/F, 1-5 Elgin Street, SoHo Central
- Tel: +852 2810 0860
This is the second branch of the outrageously popular dim sum joint that made headlines in 2014 as the cheapest restaurant to ever win a Michelin star. As you might expect, the queues for seats are long, and the tables are tiny, but for those who preserve the dim sum at Tim Ho Wan are exquisite! All the most popular dim sum dishes are available: har gao, char siew bao, and many other dumplings. The staff speak limited English here, certainly more than most other dim sum joints in Hong Kong which is also helpful for those uninitiated with dim sum but keen for a new experience. Due to the overwhelming popularity, many people decide to get takeaway.
- Opening Hours: 09:00 - 21:00
- Address: Shop 12A, Hong Kong Station (Podium Level 1, Beneath IFC Mall)
- Tel: +852 2332 3078
Pierre Gagnaire is another superstar chef to open a stunning fine dining restaurant in Hong Kong. This two Michelin star venue is located on the 25th floor of the Mandarin Oriental and has views out over Victoria Harbour for one of the most exclusive meals money can buy. Chef Pierre’s signature style is how he reimagines classic French dishes to intensify the flavours and textures. Although he is not in the kitchen on a daily basis, this vision is as strong as ever here, with seasonal menus to reflect the freshest ingredients and match Hong Kong’s changeable weather. Dinner here is expensive but you will no doubt be wowed by the finesse of the highest level of fine dining. Semi-formal dress code applies.
- Opening Hours: 12:00 - 14:30, 18:30 - 22:30
- Location: Mandarin Oriental Hong Kong, Central
- Tel: +852 2825 4001
Mott 32 is an upmarket roasted meats restaurant that is very popular for their Peking duck, bbq pork, and roast goose. They also have western meats on the menu such as Australian reared Wagyu beef. The dining room is very stylish and modern, featuring a custom designed duck oven in the centre so you can be assured that the meat you receive will be exceedingly soft and succulent. A convenient point about the menu at Mott 32 is that the dim sum menu is available in the evening, not just for lunchtimes as is the usual in Hong Kong, so you can sample some dumplings along with your meat. This is not the best place for vegetarians, but if you’d like to sample high-end Chinese meat dishes in stylish surroundings, this restaurant is a great find.
- Opening Hours: 12:00 -15:00, 18:00 - 24:00
- Address: Basement, Standard Chartered Bank Building, 4-4A Des Voeux Road
- Tel: +852 2885 8688
Yardbird is a run by a group of young talented chefs from North America, serving creative yakitori chicken cuts presented in stylish inventive portions. This western/Japanese crossover is finding favour in Hong Kong right now and Yardbird is ahead of the pack. The full range of chicken cuts are available and all heavily seasoned but done with skill for fantastic results. Popular dishes include chicken breast yakitori with wasabi and soy, pork belly flavoured with ponzu and onion, and chicken ‘oysters’ taken from the backbone. To complement the meat dishes are more Japanese-influenced dishes like asparagus with onsen egg. Located in SoHo on the western edge of Central, the closest MRT station is Sheung Wan. Open for dinner only.
- Opening Hours: Mon - Sat 18:00 - 24:00
- Address: 33-35 Bridges Street SOHO, Sheung Wan
- Tel: +852 2547 9273
This neighbourhood cha chaan teng (Hong Kong café) is a great place to dine if you want to try some local staples in Central Hong Kong. Local milk tea is deliciously thick, creamy and bitter, while the dishes such as noodle soup, pork cutlet or even a simple Hong Kong style sandwich gives visitors a real sense of what people eat on a daily basis. Plus, the menu is in Chinese and English – not always the case for cha chaan tengs, even in Central. This two storey restaurant is one of the cheapest places to eat in Central while being sure to get something of good quality. In fact, this is one of the ‘go to’ restaurants after a drinking session on Lan Kwai Fong one block up the hill.
- Opening Hours: 24 hours a day
- Address: G-2/F, 15-19 Wellington Street, Central
- Tel: +852 2525 6338
ON Dining Kitchen & Lounge is a large dining room and lounge bar located just on On Lan Street a side street off Wyndham Street on the slope up to Lan Kwai Fong. Expect southern European dishes served in a vibrant atmosphere, and not forgetting the excellent view from the 28th and 29th floor. The young and talented team behind this venture is led by Chef Philippe Orrico, whose previous restaurant, Upper Modern Bistro, recently won a Michelin star, along with some other bright names from Hong Kong’s hospitality sector. Chef Philippe’s grand idea is to close the gap between kitchen and dining room so guests feel more part of the cooking process with an open kitchen design and tableside theatrics.
- Opening Hours: 11:30 – 24:00 daily
- Address: 28-29/F, 18 On Lan Street, Central
- Tel: +852 2174 8100
Roasted goose is a classic Chinese dish, and it’s practically a rite of passage for all visitors to Hong Kong to sample it at least once. Fortunately, there are many restaurants specialising roasted meats and Yung Kee on Wellington Road is one of the best. The goose here is exceedingly fresh with crispy skin covering succulent meat. In typical Chinese style, the birds are hung in the window for guests to inspect, although there are plenty of other standout dishes on the menu such as roasted pork, bird’s nest soup and Yung Kee’s signature century egg served with pickles (not for the faint of heart). While this is definitely an authentic Chinese restaurant, owing to its location in Central Hong Kong it is foreigner friendly (which also means a little more expensive).
- Opening Hours: 11:00 – 23:00
- Address: 32-40 Wellington Street, Central
- Tel: +852 2522 1624