Sai Ying Pun’er

I have been living in this area since I moved to Hong Kong back in 2010, before the fancy (albeit extremely slow!!) escalators were installed and the MTR opening, SYP was let’s face it pretty boring and more a place you would find retirees than foodies!

Now, it has become a dining and drinking haven with plethora of choice. Just walk along High Street, past the old Mental Asylum (not kidding) and you will be hit by an abundance of options. Take your pick of Japanese, Italian, French, Thai …the list could go on. Here’s the list of my favourite SYP hangouts in no particular order:

Pizzeria Italia

This underrated Italian restaurant sits in the heart of High Street and very conveniently situated opposite the escalators. The interior is cosy and understated, perfect for a first date and a quick escape home if you live in the area!

I am forever in an argument with my friends as to where the best pizza in Hong Kong is, so I will refrain from making any bold statements, but Pizzeria Italia definitely is one of my go to Pizza places.

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They have meal deals throughout the day and even ordering a la carte turns out to be extremely reasonable (average spend will be 200 HKD with alcohol). This place has a wholesome, family atmosphere with tasty food. I’ve been here so many times and still haven’t found a dish I don’t like.

43 High Street, Sai Ying Pun, Hong Kong: Ph: 852 2525 2519

High Street Grill

If you’re feeling indecisive about what you really want, head to High street grill. The menu is quite overwhelming at first. If you are feeling lost, try the signature dishes- the mixed fajitas are sooo good! One friend of mine even made the comment – BEST EVER!

Other notable mentions are the Glazed soy salmon with wasabi mash, veggie burger and nachos.

Again reasonable price, but you are looking at more than Pizzeria Italia. With so many dishes to choose from , there is bound to be something you like on the menu.  Also, we got a free bottle of wine when paying with a Citibank card. Bonus!

48/78, High Street, Sai Ying Pun, Hong Kong, Ph: 852 2559 2638 http://casteloconcepts.com/our-venues/high-street-grill/high-street-grill

Thai on High

Forever packed with SYP’ers, Thai on High is the go to restaurant for a comfortable and reliable dining experience. Their menus are beautifully decorated (doesn’t mean much but everyone comments on this), the contents are even more satisfying with all your favourite Thai dishes on the menu. Each of which can be made with different meats or with veggies only. I have a friend who is allergic to quite a number of things including nuts and they are happy to oblige.

Noteworthy dishes are the Laab (pork), green curry (with chicken) and the Spicy Holy Basil.

At the end of a hike up the morning trail, I would definitely recommend their young coconuts! So refreshing! They also have some mocktails if you are in the mood for something sweet.

Again this place is very reasonable, as you are looking at 200 HKD per person, unfortunately no liquor is served here but you can BYOB. Consistently good, I have been coming here for a while and the quality has not gone down. Be warned that this is a very popular place, so you may be in for a wait if you are a large party.

39-41 High St., Sai Ying Pun, Ph: 852 2858 7380

Uncle Padak

This is an out and out guilty pleasure when you feel like fried chicken but are too good for KFC. This Korean Fried chicken place offers a plate of fried chicken with as little fat on the meat as possible- ensuring better quality.

After quickly doing the morning trail, we thought we deserved two HUGE plates of the Uncle’s fried goodness- no amount of exercise can justify it, but man is it gooood!

Make sure to order either the sweet and spicy or the original spicy red Padak.  You can also opt for the combo- half and half. Also if you can’t stomach spicy, they have simple fried chicken.

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Definitely more expensive than a trip to KFC at around 200 HKD per plate, so you may feel twice as guilty for this purchase, but Uncle Padak is worth going to at least once as the quality of the meat is impressive. One serving would probably satisfy two people. Although, more appropriate for a quick craving, but definitely not for a proper meal.

59 High St., Sai Ying Pun, Ph: 852 2117 9792

Metropolitain

Brought to you by French creations, High Street’s only French restaurant is quite a regular spot amongst SYPers, particularly for their brunch.

This venue is the perfect for date night. The lighting and general ambience scream romance and their extensive French wine selection will get you even more in the mood. Enjoy their semi al fresco dining or inside facing the bar area.

Set lunches are reasonable at 118 HKD which include a starter and main. Add 10 HKD for a coffee or tea and dessert of the day. Only problem is getting to SYP for lunch…..

Honourable mentions are the  L’assiette de la mer (the salmon tartare is to die for), the sole bathed in butter and lemon and their cheese selection.

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Dinner with a bottle of wine will set you back around 500 HKD per person. The relaxed atmosphere, amazing food with quite generous portions bring me back to this SYP favourite.

Aspen Court, 46 High St, Sai Ying Pun, Hong Kong Ph: 852 6271 6102 http://www.french-creations.com/metropolitain/menu

Kaum at Potato Head

If you are going to compare this Indonesian restaurant to its parent in Bali then you are never going to be satisfied. However as a standalone Indonesian bar and restaurant serving up some interesting and flavourful dishes in the heart of Sai Ying Pun, you will be pleased. The atmosphere is not necessarily beach-y given the location, but the décor, mood lighting and the beach beats from the DJ all provide a chilled atmosphere. They have a wide drinks selection at the funky bar area. At around 400 HKD per person for dinner and a drink, Potato head is worth it for a relaxed evening.

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Full review here:

https://foodbabyhk.wordpress.com/2016/08/22/kaum-at-potato-head-balinese-bliss/

G/F, 100 Third Street, Sai Ying Pun, Hong Kong Ph: 852 2858 6066 http://www.kaum.com/

Sennichi

This hole in the wall Japanese restaurant is frequented by HKU students for its reasonably priced sushi, sashimi, rolls and more. This place caters more to the takeaway crowd, however there are some stools to accommodate a few people.

Their Japanese curry and sushi are good quality and hugely satisfying! Do not go for their ramen which has just been added to the menu. There are far better places for ramen in the city, but this one is great for a cheap and quick sushi fix.

Kam Fung Mansion, 59-61 Bonham Road

Taco Chaca

Competing with the likes of Brickhouse, this more casual Tex Mex joint brings you exactly what you would expect from the cuisine. The food is fast, easy, reasonably priced and so delicious. Easily the best I have had in Hong Kong!

Slightly hidden on SYP’s second street, this place is a must for their pollo quesadillas, burritos and super nachos! We were impressed with the drinks selection in the fridge, the Mexican music to get you in the mood and the full selection of chilli sauce!

Open until 10pm from Tuesdays to Sundays, Taco Chaco is a go to place for those late night Tex Mex cravings! Watch out as its cash payments only!

Shop F, G/F, Tung Cheung Building, 1-11 Second Street, Sai Ying Pun, Western District Ph: 852 2559 9519 www.tacochaca.com/

Hometown dumplings

This Shandong style dumpling restaurant has a big following of foreigners in SYP. With its easy to read menu and tasty dishes, this place was packed even on a Monday night! Shandong cuisine is the most influential of Chinese cuisines and uses less oil and is considered healthier than other regions. We highly recommend their lamb dumplings and sweet and sour chicken- so crispy!

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G/F, 416- 418 Queen’s Road West Ph: 852 2803 0887

Nisha

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