FROM the same group who brought Hong Kong cool Brazilian/Japanese hybrid Uma Nota and the insanely popular Middle Eastern joint Bedu, comes JALAN, a Malaysian hawker-style eatery which graces SoHo. Incorporating the best of Chinese, Indian and Malay influences at this Peel St hot spot, JALAN is headed up by head chef Saumitra Suryavanshi who spent years in Malaysia finessing his talents to introduce Hong Kongers to the veritable delights of black pepper eggplant and laksa fried chicken, as well as pandan custard doughnuts (as good as they sound).
Walking into JALAN is a bit like finding yourself in Borneo from a bygone era; it’s all giant ferns and vibrant colours and cooling fans – perfect for Instagram and for escaping the slight grime of the SoHo streets outside. JALAN, 42 Peel Street, SoHo, Hong Kong
In a slightly unenviable position next to IKEA and the glitzy tourist trap that is Fashion Street in Causeway Bay, The Park Lane Hotel is at least an unstuffy breath of fresh air when it compares to other five-star Hong Kong hotels.
Alongside its very excellent Skye rooftop bar – a must for post-dinner sun downers – is its new GastroBar which offers a simple farm-to-table concept that features locally-grown ingredients and sustainable seafood.
Stand-out dishes include the organic local heirloom tomatoes with smoked burrata cheese and the hand-cut stockyard wagyu beef sirloin tartare all painstakingly prepared by head chef Lee Adams.
Don’t miss the cocktails which are excellently made and presented in a menu done up like a passport.
SKYE GastroBar, 27/F, The Park Lane, a Pullman Hotel, 310 Gloucester Rd, Causeway Bay, Hong Kong.
A relative newcomer which opened in late July, Honjo is a 120-seat behemoth which harks back to 1950s Japan in a rather cool kind of way.
It’s separated into four themed dining areas – Tin Tin Toys Lobby, Safari Room, Red Armoury and Blue Suite – which gives a sense of private dining to proceedings and offers a fantastic array of sushi, sashimi and tempura -exactly the kind of dishes Hong Kongers go mad over. Highlights include lobster tempura with wasabi aioli; broccolini tempura; raw wagyu with chorizo oil and crispy quinoa and corn with miso butter. Honjo, 1/F Hollywood Centre, 77-91 Queen’s Rd West, Sheung Wan, Hong Kong.