Favourite Hong Kong restaurants of sandwich shop co-founder Chris Cheung
Boss of Wan Chai’s Bread & Beast offers his favourite Japanese noodle joint for a night out with friends, his go-to spots for a casual lunch, and the Kowloon restaurant where he always takes visitors for Peking duck
I’m a fan of simple but well executed dishes. I like casual, comfort food and fiery, enticing street food the most. But above all, I like places with energy and passion – that really captivates me.
One of my favourite restaurants is Bakudan-ya Hiroshima-men (shop 1103, 11/F United Success Commercial Centre, 508 Jaffe Road, Causeway Bay, tel: 2891 1530). It’s a little joint up in an older building. There have simple decor, bar seats and high tables, and they play old-school J-pop. They are famous for their spicy tsukemen (dipping noodles), which come in different levels of spiciness.
Conquer the highest level of hotness and you earn the bragging rights and join the wall of fame. I catch up with my bros here. It has everything we love – spicy tsukemen, creamy Hiroshima oysters, perfectly fried karaage, and a highball to wash it all down. That’s a complete meal.
I would take visiting friends to Spring Deer (1/F, 42 Mody Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, tel: 2366 4012), which serves Beijing/northern Chinese cuisine. I grew up with this restaurant, and it brings back lots of fond childhood memories. The food has been the same amazing quality since the 1970s. The friendly staff and the chaotic energy create a one-of-a-kind of experience.
Trattoria Caffe Monteverdi (6A High Street, Sai Ying Pun, tel: 2559 0115) would be my suggestion for a romantic dinner with great food – hearty, warm, and no fuss.
For a casual lunch, I really enjoy 22 Ships (22 Ship Street, Wan Chai, tel: 2555 0722), Ham & Sherry (1-7 Ship Street, Wan Chai, tel: 2555 0628) and No 5 Italian (21 Brown Street, Tai Hang, tel: 2504 2111). Some other favourites include Little Bao (66 Staunton Street, SoHo, tel: 2194 0202), Ho Lee Fook (1-5 Elgin Street, SoHo, tel: 2810 0860), and Chesa (1/F, The Peninsula Hong Kong, 22 Salisbury Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, tel: 2696 6769).
Of course, my number one food is our sandwiches at Bread & Beast (3 Swatow Street, Wan Chai, tel: 9120 6869). A lot of Hong Kong people think of sandwiches as a lesser fast food only to have reluctantly when they are in a rush. We think a great sandwich can be a great meal. Often, we draw inspiration from local Hong Kong dishes we love, and we brainstorm to make it into a sandwich. That’s how we created our signature beef brisket Ngau Lam Wich.