Michele Theil | September 05, 2017
Hong Kong is often considered a culinary marvel, with the range of food being so extensive that you could be eating at a 5-star restaurant one day (presuming you were willing to drop that kind of dime) or eating chicken on a stick down a busy street the next. Street food in Hong Kong is both prolific and amazing, as you can find some of the best dishes for as little as HKD$20. Here are some of the best places to eat street food:
HotStar is a fried chicken and chips shop that puts other ‘fast-food’ to shame. You will be in and out in less than 10 minutes, armed with some ‘Crisp Fried Chicken’, ‘Spicy Fried Chicken’ or ‘Chicken Nuggets’ to eat as you walk down the street. My personal favourite, the ‘Spicy Fried Chicken’, costs just $20 for a half portion or $30 for a full portion, both of which is enough to fill you up.
HotStar has locations all over the city – from Jordan, Mong Kok and Hung Hom to Tai Po, Tin Hau, Sham Shui Po and Yuen Long. Take a look at their website here to find your closest location and look at their brilliant menu.
A big part of Hong Kong cuisine is the traditional dishes of tofu-stuffed peppers, curry fish balls, shrimp siu mai and egg puffs. On almost every street in Hong Kong and in every district, you will find small ‘mom-and-pop’ shops selling these on the street for you to try and enjoy.
A stuffed-pepper or a piece of stinky tofu won’t cost you more $15 a piece, while a egg puff is $12 and a curry fish ball skewer is $10. Combining a few different dishes into your street food meal is probably the best way to experience them – and it’ll cost you less than a lunch at Pizza Express, I can tell you that. Keep an eye out for these places or check out OpenRice to search for a few notable ones.
Okay so, Mexican food isn’t exactly a large part of Hong Kong cuisine, nor is it really ‘street-food’, but with the growing number of expats in the city as well as a large number of local people that are just expanding their interests, Mexican food has become a popular staple for everyone. Cali-Mex is a famous franchise that has locations all over Hong Kong, including one in Lan Kwai Fong, that stays open late for when you need that drunken burrito. And while you might not think of Mexican food as ‘street-food’, a burrito on-the-go is the perfect thing for the increasingly busy people of Hong Kong. Many Cali-Mex locations are small and don’t offer much in the way of seating – so takeaway is pretty much your only option. Their menu consists of tacos, burritos and burrito bowls, as well as margaritas, even including vegetarian or vegan options for those who have dietary restrictions.
So, head to the Cali-Mex website to find your nearest branch and pick out your chosen staple for the next time you need a quick Mexican food fix.
To wash down the heavenly tastes you’ll find on your street food search, you need a classic bubble tea. A Taiwanese product, bubble tea has exploded all over the world, and nowhere more so than in Hong Kong, among native Chinese people. There are several bubble tea franchises all over Hong Kong, with hundreds of flavours to suit everyone’s tastes. But, it can be difficult to know where the best bubble tea is and what you should try first.
ShareTea is my personal favourite bubble tea place. If there’s a ShareTea around, I will bend over backwards to head there instead of another bubble tea shop.
Their strength lies in their fruit teas, which include pieces of the fruit in question to go along with the tapioca pearls. They also offer less ice and low-sugar options (just ask) in both medium and large sizes. My personal go-to’s are the mango green tea with tapioca or the passionfruit green tea with tapioca. But there are loads of flavours and for only $20, it’s really worth a try.
There’s also a franchise called GongCha, which is probably the most popular franchise, as it has the most branches in Hong Kong. While I personally believe ShareTea is better, GongCha is good in a pinch and still offers you delicious bubble teas. From here, I like the passionfruit green tea with tapioca (which is less fruity and tastes more like actual tea than ShareTea) or the classic Taiwanese bubble tea, which is simply milky breakfast tea with tapioca in it.
Besides these two more notable branches, there are hundreds of places all over Hong Kong that also sell bubble tea, so have a try as I’m sure you’ll love it!
Dundas Street lies between the stations of Mong Kok and Yau Ma Tei, perpendicular to Ladies Market. It is one of my favourite places to go as it has everything I’ve mentioned in this post – HotStar, Bubble Tea, Cali-Mex and classic Chinese dishes. The area also boasts places like BaFang Dumplings, a delicious and cheap dumplings restaurant ($36 for 10 dumplings and a bubble tea), Hiu Lau Shan, a franchise that sells delicious smoothies, juices and desserts, and a shop that sells the instragrammable egg puffs with ice cream.
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