Nestled in a few of the city's urban backstreets are several great places for bargain hunters to buy kitchen utensils.
Whether you're an aspiring chef or just an occasional kitchen dabbler, there's something to suit almost every cooking need in the Yau Ma Tei portion of Shanghai Street. A short walk from exit B2 of the district's MTR station are rows of kitchen shops that stock an array of utensils. Among them is Man Kee, a more-than-half-century-old retailer that sells chopping boards, stainless-steel pots and everything in between.
Nearby are specialist wholesale suppliers catering to the city's food preparation industry. That means a seemingly obsessive number of options when it comes to bamboo dim-sum baskets, Japanese tea ware, cake-making equipment and other specialist cookery items. The prices are arguably the cheapest in the city.
For example, a well-known brand of cast-iron pan was recently offered for sale for HK$70, about a quarter of the sticker price at a major department store. A wide selection of sturdy plates and cups can be found ranging from HK$5 to HK$10 apiece. Keep in mind that many stores in the district are wholesalers. That doesn't necessarily mean they won't sell to you. It does mean you may have to bargain.
Deeper into the Kwun Tong Road area of Kowloon, the Meyer's outlet offers bargains on foreign-brand cooking ware. Shoppers should take exit B5 from the Ngau Tau Kok MTR station. In some cases, it's possible to find discounts of up to 80 per cent, with many of the items never-before used but without packaging. Much of the stock, however, has superficial defects and isn't covered by a warranty.
Meanwhile, the big department stores often are great places to find deals. Retailers such as Sogo, Wing On, Sincere, and Jusco regularly hold kitchen fairs that feature older stock or consignment goods at much-reduced prices.
Sometimes these big retailers offer big discounts that can be hard to match. Sogo recently offered Le Creuset's cast-iron pots, known as the Round French Oven, for 65 per cent less than the sticker price at the official store.
On Hong Kong Island, there is King Tak Hong. On Queen's Road East in Wan Chai, it first opened its doors in 1954. It stocks kitchen utensils ranging from rattan products to Japanese porcelain. It has an extensive consumer kitchen section with prices far below those of larger shops. To get there, take exit B1 from Wan Chai MTR station.