“There is no sincerer love than the love of food.” — George Bernard Shaw. There is also nothing more pressing than the need for food. Thankfully, Kennedy Town readily satisfies that need with its medley of flavours and cuisines. The options range from entire streets of restaurants to individual eateries tucked away unassumingly beneath a cluster of residential buildings. Most are inexpensive and convenient, and you’ll find groups of HKU students, enjoying a meal and a night out. These are the favourite haunts of our people.
- Ho Ho Restaurant (可可店)
Address: Luen Wai Apartment, 136–142 Belcher’s St, Kennedy Town
Price range: $50 or less
Perhaps the most popular restaurant amongst HKU students is 可可店. Despite its humble doorway, it is an old favourite; and if the flocks of students seen there every night do not convince you, there is an entire wall crammed with an impressing number of certificates and acknowledgements from HKU societies.
It provides an excellent sample of the common local cuisine: beef brisket noodles, curry fish balls, as well as the distinctive dish of fried rice noodle rolls with egg (煎腸粉加蛋). There is also a dessert store just across the street, dedicated to local treats such as black glutinous rice, sago puddings, and so-called ‘snow mountains’ (alternatively, bean jellies). Furthermore, it is low-cost and wallet-friendly for the financially limited university student — what more could you want?
2. Sun Hing Restaurant (新興食家
Address: Shop C, G/F, 8 Smithfield Road, Kennedy Town
Price range: $50 or less
Another wildly popular place would be 新興食家, commonly known as the “3 am dim sum place”. In fact, there is a whiteboard across one wall, on which is written: “AT MIDNIGHT HOURS, PLEASE TALK QUIETLY”, and “Pls help yourself in making tea before 3 am!”. Clearly, it is well-frequented in the not-so-quiet hours of the night.
Nevertheless, it is bustling at all hours of the day. With classic dim sum dishes ranging from the savoury siu mai (燒賣皇) and shrimp dumplings (蝦餃皇) to the sweet custard buns (流沙包), it is a quintessential Hong Kong food experience, and one that is priced under $25 per dish. As with the rest of Hong Kong, there are too many people and not enough space, so you will often find yourself crammed on small round tables with other customers. If you want a table with your friends, you have to be willing to wait for it!
3. New Korean BBQ Restaurant (新高麗苑韓國餐廳)
Address: 2/F, 113 Belcher’s Street, Kennedy Town
Price range: $55 — $65 for set lunch; $101 — $200 otherwise
If you are searching for something different, a Korean BBQ lunch set might be to your taste. Another classic restaurant amongst HKU students, this place offers a traditional Korean BBQ meal at a reasonable price. Other than the grill, the lunch set also offers a bowl of soup and assorted vegetable appetizers, along with jelly for dessert.
This restaurant is more polished than many of the local eateries, and is an ideal place for more significant occasions.
Part 2 of this food tour will follow soon!
Written by Jessica Wang and Swapnil Joshi
Edited by Rustam Khan
Photo credits: Openrice.