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Tim Ho Wan

Tim Ho Wan

If you can only have one meal in Hong Kong, make it Tim Ho Wan. The internationally renowned, Michelin-starred chain of restaurants takes its origins from Hong Kong, and specialises in what is referred to as "working-class dim sum". Here, you'll get the unique chance to dine on specialities most restaurants would charge an arm and a leg for all at a price lower than what one would expect to pay for a cup of coffee. Their most prised attraction are the BBQ pork buns, but the menu is highly varied, and includes everything from steamed dumplings to osmanthus cake. Once seated, tick the boxes on the individual order cards on your table and hand those over to your server to place an order (there is a small selection in the illustrated menu); dishes normally arrive in no time. Expect a long wait to be seated at most locations (there are several scattered throughout Hong Kong). Our favourite outlet is the one in residential Sham Shui Po: there is usually either no wait at all or a much shorter one compared to locations downtown, plus you'll be dining in the company of locals. This branch is also where you're most likely to receive a private table (although sharing a table with strangers is customary across all outlets). At the time of writing, all tim Ho Wan locations in Hong Kong are cash-only.
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Ichiran Ramen

Ichiran Ramen

Take the chance to have a bowl of ramen at one of two Hong Kong-based outlets of the celebrated Japanese brand originating from Hakata, the birthplace of tonkotsu. Hong Kong's two locations stay true to the original, with semi-private seating facing the "service window". Wait for the tiny roll-up blind to be lifted by someone on the kitchen side, and a steaming hot bowl of ramen to materialise right in front of you. Ichiran's tonkotsu broth is so good it deserves to have poems dedicated to it: not too watery, not too thick (a common pitfall of tonkotsu elsewhere in the city), plus you get to pick (or leave out) any add-ons you prefer. The Causeway Bay location is open 24/7.
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Din Tai Fung

Din Tai Fung

Din Tai Fung is a restaurant chain originating in Taiwan, which now has multiple branches across Asia and beyond (the fact it remains largely unknown in the West is a tragic shortcoming). They are famous for their steamed dumplings (xiao long bao), which are some of the world's best: each move of the dumpling chefs is executed with careful precision in the open kitchen. It was once named among the top ten restaurants in the world by The New York Times, and two branches in Hong Kong were distinguished by the Michelin Guide. The service is truly impeccable, and the price-quality ratio needs to be experienced to be believed. This particular outlet is well hidden in a shopping centre, but worth searching for. The friendly staff serves quality food in a vibrant atmosphere.
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Heichinrou

Heichinrou

The most luxurious dim sum to be found in Hong Kong. The cream of Hong Kong society gathers in Heichinrou of Kwun Tong and Diamond Hill on public holidays to eat the exquisite, fancy dishes in elegant surroundings. The most typical cuisine is dim sum, or “yum cha” as it is also called (literally: “drink tea”). Dim sum is eaten as a kind of brunch and consists of a large number of fancy dishes, including, among other things: dumplings, fried vegetables, spring rolls and meatballs.
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