Favourite Hong Kong restaurants of Shirley Hiranand, public relations director
Gaia Ristorante’s an Italian comfort zone in Sheung Wan, Dragon-i is a well-kept secret for Chinese and Japanese, Sha Tin 18’s Peking duck is a winner and Chachawan in Sheung Wan saves you a flight for good Thai
I am a vitamin freak so I don’t really eat fatty food, but I like comfort food and spicy things, especially on hangover days. The spicier the better. But there are places I always return to.
Gaia Ristorante (Grand Millennium Plaza, 181 Queen’s Road Central, Sheung Wan, tel: 2167 8200) is like a home away from home for me. It’s my formal dining choice. It has impeccable service and there’s nothing better than a place where the chef knows your likes and dislikes. The atmosphere just feels good and the food is always consistent.
Another comfort option is Dragon-i (Podium, The Centrium, 60 Wyndham Street, Central, tel: 3110 1222). Few people realise they have amazing food. They know dim sum but have a great chef who serves really good Chinese and Japanese. It’s his take on it and that’s the nice part. It is one of the town’s best kept secrets.
They say home is where the heart is so in Kowloon, the Holiday Inn Golden Mile in Tsim Sha Tsui has two of my favourite restaurants. The hotel is owned by the Harilelas and they’re family. Osteria (M/F, 50 Nathan Road, tel: 2315 1010) has family-style Italian food with an amazing wine list. Loong Yuen (Basement 1, tel: 2315 1006) is the Cantonese restaurant and anything you want is amazing. I don’t know what I would do without those restaurants.
Sha Tin 18 (4/F, Hyatt Regency Hong Kong, 18 Chak Cheung Street, Sha Tin, tel: 3723 7932) has the best Peking duck and they have five ways of serving it. I take many friends there. Another place to drive to is Tai Mei Tuk in Tai Po. We’ll go to Bride’s Pool Road for a hike and eat at a lot of interesting little places. My favourite is Luca (64A Lung Mei Tsuen, Ting Kok Road, Tai Po, tel: 2662 6737) because they have thin, crispy pizza.
I love Yardbird (33-35 Bridges Street, Sheung Wan, tel: 2547 9273). My now-grown children agree with me that this Japanese place is great. We also love Thai food. If you can’t make it to Thailand, Chachawan (206 Hollywood Road, Sheung Wan, tel: 2549 0020) is a good option.
There’s a little hole-in-the-wall place we like called Hing Kee Restaurant (1/F Po Wah Commercial Building,180 Nathan Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, tel: 2722 0022). It’s our family’s favourite for crab and clams. We usually bring it home and cry buckets eating it. I am also not ashamed to ask for extra chilli sauce and I eat it with rice the next day.