With the world's highest meat consumption per capita, a whopping 170 kilograms per year, Hong Kong has historically lacked exciting restaurants for vegans or vegetarians. However, times and tastes are changing and the trend for clean and green eating has finally arrived with sustainable, organic, and vegetarian options shooting up across the city like bamboo.
While the amount of strictly vegetarian restaurants remains relatively small, more and more restaurants are adapting their menus to include plenty of enticing plant-based choices. So, here are our five favourite vegetarian-friendly restaurants in town.
A darling of Hong Kong's culinary scene, Amber retained its two Michelin stars for 15 consecutive years before adding a Green star in 2022. The latter came in recognition of executive chef Richard Ekkebus's decision to transform the menu from a meat, butter, and cream melee to something more ethically and (preferably) locally sourced – which initially caused a stir, but it's still challenging as ever to get a table.
15 Queen's Road Central, Central, Hong Kong
Prix-fixe menus are now less meat-centric and feature low-fat, dairy-free, gluten-free, reduced salt and sugar options, plus a good vegetarian menu – the proceeds of which go towards supporting local NGO, The Green Earth. Our favourite veg dishes? It's between the soy milk burrata served with heirloom tomatoes and rose lemon verbena or the heirloom carrot with kumquat, mead, honey vinegar, longan honey, and lacto-fermented nut butter.
Chefs Ronald Shao and Law Chak-kei are the brains behind the city's first Chinese vegetarian fine dining restaurant, Yuan. And fine dining it is: the chic minimalist dining room speaks the language of quiet luxury, with taupe walls, subtle gold accents, and creamy leather chairs.
Shop 2, G/F, Chinachem Hollywood Centre, 1–13 Hollywood Road, Central, Hong Kong
The menu, meanwhile, is all about giving traditional dishes and flavours a modern touch. For example, the emerald pate – a cold Sichuan dish said to be a favourite of Empress Cixi – features a silky bean purée, pickled mustard beans, rose kohlrabi, and caviar, whilst the crystal clear Matsutake mushroom soup is finished with an intricately carved chrysanthemum flower made from tofu. A lunchtime and 12-course all-day tasting menu are available and change with the seasons.
While Feuille isn't strictly vegetarian, it is hyper-focused on seasonality with all the sophistication and silk-smooth service you'd expect from one of Hong Kong's finest dining establishments. Chef David Toutain's multi-course tasting menus are split into four chapters – Grains and Seeds; Leaves, Stems and Roots; Flowers and Fruits; and Origins – and have proved a hit with diners of all dietary persuasions.
5/F, The Wellington, 198 Wellington St, Central, Hong Kong
On the vegetarian menu, you'll find delights like frothy sweet corn and cumin egg, almond milk garlic zucchini gnocchi, and saffron chervil root with truffle onion. However, save space for the dill and lemon raspberry dessert and a final bite of delicate lemon and mint chocolates – and don't miss the organic and biodynamic wine pairing, either, organsied by enthusiastic young sommelier Esther Poon.
Veda at Ovolo Central
Trendsetters Ovolo were the first hotel group to commit to vegetarian and plant-based menus in all their restaurants. Tucked above the Lan Kwai Fong party zone in Central, Veda takes its cues from India, dishing up reimagined favourites such as aloo paratha served in a tortilla with tempe achari and avocado and pumpkin rajma topped with pearls of goat cheese.
2 Arbuthnot Rd, Central, Hong Kong
The result is a fresh and original menu that's still satisfyingly old-school. Cocktails riff off the South Asian subcontinent; try a Chai Martini, made with cardamon vodka and lemon twist, or a Girl that Married a Tiger, blending kefir leaf gin and lime. Whether dropping in for lunch or fuelling up for a night on the town, the vibe is always warm, welcoming, and upbeat.
Lok Cha Teahouse
For something more down to earth, combine a vegetarian dim sum breakfast or lunch with a stroll around Hong Kong Park at this greenery-filled teahouse. Set inside a Colonial-era mansion, it's an atmospheric space with glossy parquet floors, carved wooden screens, and calligraphy on the walls.
The K.s.lo Gallery, Admiralty, Hong Kong
Come with friends to share more dishes; your must-tries include fried green squash dumplings, golden mushroom samosas, fried wasabi pea cake, and airy radish puffs. And, being a teahouse, Lok Cha also specialises in tea, with more than 100 carefully curated varieties to try, either with dim sum or at a specially arranged private tea tasting. Drop by on a Sunday for a side of live classical music renditions.
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