Favourite Hong Kong restaurants of Ines Gafsi, co-founder, Female Entrepreneurs Worldwide
As a French woman, Gafsi has her favourite French bistro, but she's discovered a world of flavours since arriving in the city
I was born in France so I tend to think French cuisine is best in France. But that was before I arrived in Hong Kong four years ago and discovered its extraordinary dining scene.
For breakfast, I love Brick Lane (2 Blenheim Avenue, Tsim Sha Tsui, tel: 2736 8893) for its delicious full English breakfast. The TST branch has cool decorations and friendly staff. The whole area has a really hipster-cool atmosphere.
Dine Art (16/F Kwai Bo Industrial Building, 40 Wong Chuk Hang Road, Aberdeen, tel: 2805 8555) is my favourite hidden gem. It’s a great escape to savour authentic Italian food and is excellent value for lunch with an arty vibe. Chef Cosimo is an incredible chef and changes the set lunch every week, reinventing new delicious flavours.
For midweek mischief I love to enjoy a good glass of pinot noir at Comptoir (42 Forbes Street, Kennedy Town, tel: 2453 9873). This French bistro has a really chilled and friendly atmosphere, perfect to catch up with a friend far from the noise of Central bars. The cellar has a wide range of French wines from some of the finest wineries at a very affordable price.
For brunch, I love to gather with my friends at Zuma (5/F The Landmark, 15 Queen’s Road Central, Central, tel: 3657 6388) – I’m never disappointed by the quality of the buffet. Fresh sushi and champagne on the terrace are the perfect combination to put you in a party mood. Plus, it ends with a decadent dessert platter that no one can resist, no matter how full they are.
I live in Shek O and over the weekend I usually go for the traditional noodle soup at the little restaurant by the temple called Hung Kee Noodles (in front of 330 Shek O Village). It serves incredibly flavourful home-made egg noodles with tofu in cute Chinese porcelain bowls. With a few spoons of spicy chilli, it’s delicious!
I am a big fan of the chocolate cake at La Rotisserie (several branches, including 71 Third Street, Sai Ying Pun, tel: 2857 0818). I like it for its sweetness mixed with the salty taste of the sel de Guerande.
At Elephant Grounds (11 Gough Street, Sheung Wan, tel: 2253 1313) I love the ice-cream sandwiches for their uniqueness – they change the flavour every week. At Oddies Foodies (149 Wan Chai Road, Wan Chai, tel: 9551 7972) I like the quirky location and funny-looking ice creams.
My favourite place for a romantic dinner is Le Bistro Winebeast (15 McGregor Street, Wan Chai, tel: 2479 6833). It’s an intimate space that serves the best wine pairing menu. The staff is charming and each dish is carefully prepared, very flavourful and well presented. I obviously fall for their cheese platter – their selection is fantastic!
I recently holidayed in California and had the chance to try The French Laundry in Napa Valley (6640 Washington Street, Yountville, California tel: +1 707 944 2380). It was probably the most incredible dining experience I ever had – a real culinary adventure. A nine-course lunch of very fine French cuisine paired with exceptional wines. I love discovering new flavours and being surprised by unordinary dishes. It really met my expectations of a Michelin three-star restaurant.
As told to Kylie Knott