Kennedy Town is named after Arthur Edward Kennedy, who was the seventh governor of Hong Kong from 1872 to 1877. Much of the land was reclaimed along the coast of Kennedy Town, forming a long, narrow strip that stretches from Kennedy Praya to Shek Tong Shui. The area around Rock Hill Street used to be the site of the cattle quarantine depot and slaughterhouse.
Rents in the district used to be relatively inexpensive due to the lack of MTR access. But with the MTR extending here at the end of next year, more people will move to the area, with restaurants following suit.
1 BISTRO DU VIN
SHOP D, 1 DAVIS STREET, KENNEDY TOWN, 2824 3010
Enjoy a taste of France at this laid-back restaurant, from coq au vin and charcuterie to crispy suckling pig. One of the best dishes is the bouillabaisse - a cast-iron pan filled with succulent crab, prawns, scallops and fish in a flavourful bisque. Save room for the Grand Marnier soufflé and baked madeleines.
2 PICCOLO PIZZERIA & BAR
SHOP E, 1 DAVIS STREET, KENNEDY TOWN, 2824 3000
This place is cheap and cheerful, with delicious pastas and thin-crust pizzas. Inside the cosy space is a large window through which customers can watch their pizzas being made in a brick oven. Pop songs from the ’80s and ’90s play in the background, creating a fun atmosphere. The calamari is delicious, as is the signature pancetta pizza, complete with a semi-cooked egg – spread it all over the pizza before digging in. But the spaghetti aglio olio is the one to beat.
SHOP B, 1 DAVIS STREET, KENNEDY TOWN, 2818 8266
Gourmet dining has arrived in the neighbourhood thanks to chef David Lai of On Lot 10, who has created a less-expensive version here. The restaurant is similar to its Gough Street cousin, with a focus on classic French bistro food, but it has more offal on the menu. There’s a solid selection of wines and desserts. If you’re looking for a small bite, head around the corner to
SHOP D, YUE ON BUILDING, 78-86 CATCHICK STREET, KENNEDY TOWN, 2485 2345
Opened late last year, Bresola is quietly making its presence known, serving hearty dishes. The interior is straightforward and classic, with lots of dark wood and white walls. The dining room opens up to the street. While the restaurant’s name is Italian, the fare is more Western, ranging from pasta and pizza to steaks, Cajun chicken salad and ahi tuna with wasabi mayonnaise.
5 OONAMI JAPANESE & OYSTER RESTAURANT
G/F, CADO BUILDING, 39A CADOGAN STREET, KENNEDY TOWN, 2817 6626
The shopfront of this restaurant looks a bit bland with moulded grey bricks, and the inside is minimalistic, but diners come here for the food – a wide range of Japanese cuisine. Try the fresh sashimi, the rich and refreshing inaniwa udon in fish soup and the pan-fried dumplings.
6 THALASSIC THAI
SHOP C-D, G/F, CHI PING BUILDING, 38 HAU WO STREET, KENNEDY TOWN, 3606 3111
This restaurant is so popular in the neighbourhood that there’s extra space down the street to accommodate overflow customers. The food is Chinese-style Thai, so don’t expect an authentic Thai menu, but the prices are good.
7 THE LIMESTONE ARMS
SHOP 6, G/F, SINCERE WESTERN HOUSE, 42 FORBES STREET, KENNEDY TOWN, 2855 8918
The husband-and-wife team who opened Lime in Mid-Levels have now opened The Limestone Arms, a British-style pub in Kennedy Town. Patrons can watch live sports on the big screen or take part in quiz nights and ’80s-themed evenings. The menu features traditional pub grub and some Thai fusion dishes, such as lemongrass chicken strips and tom yum goong nachos. On Thursdays from 6pm, chef Kittiya Fuangoo prepares authentic Thai dishes.