Chocolatier Historic French patisserie Dalloyau arrived in Hong Kong in the earlier half of 2014, taking up a spacious and elegant storefront in Harbor City, which doubles as a classy fine-dine afternoon tea spot. It wins points for a 300-year tradition of impeccably detailed pastries, its signature coffee-almond-sponge Opéra cake, and for its unfortunately amusing name: “Dalloyau” sounds roughly like “bottom-spanking” in Cantonese. Can’t win ‘em all… Shop 403, 4/F, Ocean Centre, Harbour City, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon, 3185-8330. Steakhouse Purists might scoff at the idea that a steak joint isn’t a dark mancave serving up hefty slices of grilled meat, but we beg to differ. Japanese fine-dining steak restaurant Holytan in The Pottinger hotel is at the top of our list thanks to its sleeker steaks prepared with a unique cooking method. They use an infrared oven—one of only two in the world. The results are perfectly charred and flavorful on the outside, and deep pink and juicy on the inside. Paired with addictive soy-based or herby sauces, Holytan’s steaks are big winners in our book. 2/F, The Pottinger, 74 Queen’s Rd. Central, 2351-5808. KFC Hong Kong Islanders, you’ve sat tight for a worthwhile Island contender to the still-popular, still-expanding Korean Fried Chicken scene. This summer, the original trendsetters Lee Family (Lee Ga) Chicken Hof & Soju finally brought its back-to-basics vibe, famously scrumptious plates of KFC and super-cheap liquor to Wan Chai. For dissipating the insane crowds at the Kowloon-side branch and providing one more outlet to satisfy our cravings: Lee Family, you are our heroes. Shop C, G/F, Wah Fat Mansion, 405-419 Lockhart Rd., Wan Chai, 2176-4598. Set Lunch Dandan Soul Food’s lunch sets go for $70 or less: you get an appetizer, a main and a drink. Where else can you get delicious fiery Sichuan food in your belly for such a good deal? And in a prime location in the Sheung Wan/Central area, no less? Throw some spice into your day at this awesome neighborhood addition, and your office drone job will seem like way less of a problem. Shop 101A, Grand Millennium Plaza, 181 Queen’s Rd. Central, Sheung Wan. Pizza Pizza pickings are slim in Hong Kong, and that’s why we were thrilled when we heard Grano Italiano was opening this year. We recently tried the pizzeria’s signature Grano Italiano pizza, which buckles under the weight of fresh mozzarella, parma ham, rocket and parmesan. For a pizza that goes big on toppings but won’t break the bank ($118-145 per pizza), Grano is our new go-to. Shop 4C-D, PL/F, Tower 1, China Hong Kong City, Tsim Sha Tsui, 2661-3533. Order online via Food by Web ( www.fbw.hk ), and Food Panda ( www.foodpanda.hk ). Brunch Upper Modern Bistro may have opened in 2013, but the French fusion restaurant has just started serving a hearty set brunch. From eggs Benedict with bright orange yolks to a perfectly creamy foie gras crème brulee to spicy Bloody Marys—this small bistro knows how to brunch. The servers go out of their way to accommodate, offering little add-ons here and substitutions there. For a gourmet experience that’s actually quite reasonably priced ($390 per person buys tons of food, plus a glass of champagne), Upper Modern Bistro has brunch in the bag. 6-14 Upper Station St., Sheung Wan, 2517-0977. Coffee Shop If one thing has improved in Hong Kong over the past year, it’s gotta be the coffee. Of all the little hole-in-the-wall cafes that have been popping up, our favorite is Brew Bros Coffee in Sheung Wan. With pretty white tile décor and a minimalist Japanese feel, Brew Bros serves up java (from $28) and atmosphere in equal measure. It’s a Melbourne-style experience—the husband and wife who run the shop met there—with beans from down-under coffee roaster Market Lane. The open-air eatery also serves up a decent all-day breakfast, but good luck snagging a table. 33 Hillier St., Sheung Wan, 2572-0238, www.facebook.com/brewbroscoffee . Battle of the Burgers Wan Chai saw two awesome burger openings this year: Beef & Liberty in January, followed by Butchers Club Burger in June. Kate Springer sees how the restaurants' bacon burgers stack up side by side. Butchers Club ‘Burger’ Beef & Liberty ‘Bacon Cheese’ The guys behind the Butchers Club private kitchen and butchery aren’t slowing down: a new branch opens in Central this month. G/F, Rialto Building, 2 Landale St., Wan Chai, 2884-9768. Beef & Liberty takes its burgers seriously. The beef is made from hormone-free, grass-fed cattle, and the craft beer selection is top-notch too. 2/F, 23 Wing Fung St., Wan Chai, 2811-3009. Cheese, Please? Cheese, Please? A mild English white cheddar cheese that’s oozy all over. A hand-picked tangy cheddar cheese from the Island of Mull in Scotland. Prep School Prep School Always cooked medium— nice and pink in the middle. Prepared to your liking with a charred crust. Topping the Thing Topping the Thing Streaky, thick-cut Canadian smoked bacon that’s been glazed with maple syrup, and a caramelized onion “secret sauce.” Wicks English dry-cured bacon, caramelized onion jam, homemade BBQ sauce and pickles. Hot Buns Hot Buns A soft, floured bap made by Bread Elements—a top bakery in Hong Kong. The bun is lightly toasted for a little crunch. The resto has its own custom-made bun. Using Japanese and French flours, they take 27 hours to make. What’s Your Beef? What’s Your Beef? Butchers Club uses its own brand of dry-aged Black Angus beef from New South Wales, Australia. The 160g patties (500g pictured) comprise equal parts rump, chuck and brisket—all minced on the premises. Beef & Liberty’s Bacon Cheese burger is made with 180g of beef from Hereford and Angus cattle, raised in Tasmania’s Cape Grim. Made from three different cuts, the meat is freshly ground twice a day, before lunch and dinner. What’s it Cost? What’s it Cost? $100 $122 Extra, Extra Extra, Extra Butchers Club says it does one burger, one way—but there’s also a “secret menu” that customers can access via the website, or using QR codes strewn around the restaurant. Our favorite is the Wu Tang Style ($120; fried in Sriracha, topped with cheese, kimchi, kewpie mayo and tempura sweet potato). Beef & Liberty’s menu is diverse, with nine burger varieties. For something a little different, try the veggie-friendly Argy Bhaji ($86; chickpea and onion fritter with Indian flavors) or the Green Chili burger ($115; beef, green chili slices, jalapeño relish, Ogleshield cheese, butter lettuce, mayo).