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Arts Neighbourhood Guide: Where To Eat, Drink And Shop In Sai Ying Pun

Neighbourhood Guide: Where To Eat, Drink And Shop In Sai Ying Pun

Neighbourhood Guide: Where To Eat, Drink And Shop In Sai Ying Pun
By Coco Marett
By Coco Marett
November 22, 2019
There is so much to love about Sai Ying Pun. From its narrow, sunlit streets to its beautiful murals (including an epic piece by Shepard Fairey) and of course, its unbeatable selection of restaurants and bars that—while individually unique in concept—share the same intimate neighbourhood vibe that places this district in a league of its own

Brut!

Brut! is the epitome of modern dining; creative plates made to share, a well curated selection of small batch wines, a lively, informal atmosphere and charismatic staff. 

The restaurant's one-page menu isn't shy in playing with bold flavours, featuring dishes like drunken chicken with fried ginger and a wild mushroom mousse, roquefort mac and cheese, and lamb ribs with blackberry relish and shiso to name a few. 

Brut!, Shop C, G/F, Tung Cheung Building, 1-11 Second Street, Sai Ying Pun, Hong Kong, +852 3460 5863; brut.com.hk

See also: Sai Ying Pun’s Brut Is More Than An Ordinary Neighborhood Tapas Bar

Krua Walaiphan

Opened by Chachwan alumni Walaiphan Hanyut and Renee Dancel, Krua Walaiphan serves some of the most authentic Thai food in Hong Kong in a cosy, unpretentious setting. 

The dishes are generous in size and don't miss a beat when it comes to flavour. The laab moo is herbacious and refreshing, the grilled tiger prawns with glass noodles will transport you to the smoky street stalls of Thailand, the charcoal grilled chicken has perfectly crispy skin and succulent meat and the salt-crusted whole barramundi is simply stunning. All dishes are made MSG-free. 

Krua Walaiphan, 29 High Street, Sai Ying Pun, Hong Kong, +852 2804 1555; facebook.com/kruawalaiphan

Kaum at Potato Head

While Potato Head in Hong Kong may not have the beach front and infinity pool that its original Bali outpost does, it has certainly done well in capturing the rich and addictive island flavours at Kaum, its bright and airy Indonesian restaurant. 

Its menu is a colourful selection favourites like gado gado salad, nasi goreng and a fabulous babi guling, while introducing Hongkongers to more unusual dishes like braised young jackfruit and red beans in a mild coconut curry and a Ternate style ceviche that beautifully combines marinated raw tuna, virgin coconut oil, lime, pomelo and toasted kenari nuts. 

Potato Head, 100 Third St, Sai Ying Pun, Hong Kong, +852 2858 6066; potatohead.co

Pondi

Newly opened Pondi is a celebration for the senses. Taking over a sweet little two-story space in a cul de sac, the intimate, earthy space is dimly lit with soft lighting and candles, and has a charming porch area with outdoor seating. 

The menu is a love letter to Pondicherry, showcasing nostalgic, homely flavors from India in a way that Hong Kong hasn't seen yet. Served on beautiful ceramics, diners can enjoy dishes like air dried lamb loin with braised ribs and garden peas in a caraway seed cream, yoghurt croquettes served with candied beets and pickled shallots in a sunflower crust and local snake beans with a moreish anchovy sambal. Wine pairing is encouraged. 

Pondi, 14 Fuk Sau Lane, Sai Ying Pun, Hong Kong, +852  2761 4900; facebook.com/pondihk

See also: Hong Kong Hikes, Plus Where To Eat And Drink After

Okra

It's clear that Chef Max Levy has fun doing what he's doing, and that energy is felt—and contagious—once you enter Okra. 

This modern izakaya is split over two levels; the ground floor, Okra Kitchen, delivers a more casual setting, serving creative Japanese-inspired dishes that have been designed to enjoy with a drink. Think roasted dashi bacon with daikon oroshi, ponzu and hot sauce, or the El Pollo Loco fried chicken samich'—Levy's take on the katsu sando. The upper floor, Okra Bar, serves a new breed of sushi omakase and is reservations-only. Sake pairings are highly recommended, as Okra prides itself in its brilliant selection of natural, unpasteurized sakes. 

Okra, G/F, 110 Queen's Rd W, Sai Ying Pun, Hong Kong, +852 2806 1038; okra.kitchen

Ping Pong 129

Once upon a time, this space served as a ping pong hall for locals to get together and hit the paddle. Today, locals get together here for a different reason—to enjoy its superb selection of gins from around the world and a menu of delicious tapas to pair.  

Its soaring ceiling creates a dramatic effect, while buzzing neon lights and elements from its past life as a rec hall make it uniquely Hong Kong. 

Ping Pong 129, 129 Second Street L/G Nam Cheong House, Sai Ying Pun, Hong Kong, +852 9835 5061; pingpong129.com

See also: 7 Boutique Hotels For A Hong Kong Staycation

The Music Room at Potato Head

An audiophile's dream come true, The Music Room is located at the end of a hidden passageway inside Potato Head, and it feels as though you've stepped into someone's chic basement hideaway from the '70s—velour-coated lounge chairs, mod style furniture and the pièce de résistance; a DJ booth set against a floor-to-ceiling, wall-to-wall shelf filled with vinyl records. 

A listening room and bar unlike any other in Hong Kong, it has a well curated music programme geared towards serious music lovers, and regularly hosts renowned local and international DJs. 

Potato Head, 100 Third St, Sai Ying Pun, Hong Kong, +852 2858 6066; potatohead.co

Premier Cru

Premier Cru is perhaps one of Hong Kong's most underrated wine shops and bars. Working directly with wine makers in France, this "French wine library" specialises in wines from the Rhone Valley and Burgundy regions.

It's a great place to peruse for unusual or lesser known bottles, and better yet, once you've picked one, you can head to the courtyard to enjoy it al fresco with friends. Chin chin!

Premier Cru, 15 High Street, Sai Ying Pun, Hong Kong, +852 9522 5267; premiercru.hk

See also: Neighbourhood Guide: Where To Eat Drink And Shop In Tai Hang

Live Zero

Live Zero is a haven for bulk goods that are free from harmful packaging. They stock a large selection of organic pantry staples including a variety flours, lentils and nut butters, as well as a delightful selection of sweet treats ranging from dried fruits to chocolate-covered goodies.  

Here, you'll also find a plethora of eco-friendly self-care items, like bio-based sunscreen by Surfer's Barrier, reusable facial rounds by Marley's Monsters and cleansing bars by Ethique. The store recently launched Live Zero Bulk Beauty, a collection of high quality skincare products that are ethically produced, free from nasty toxins and packaged 100% plastic-free. This includes clay masks, essential oils and even body glitter—everything you need to transform your beauty routine. 

Live Zero, G/F, 33 High St, Sai Ying Pun, Hong Kong, +852 9433 3394; livezero.hk

Bones and Blades

Conscious carnivores can't seem to get enough of this high end butcher, which specialises in premium meats that are carefully sourced from farms that align with their philosophy of sustainable, ethical farming. Bones and Blades' knowledgeable staff take great pride in their work, and are more than happy to help you pick from their selection grass-fed, free range meats, homemade sausages and artisanal condiments to enjoy them with. 

Not one for cooking? The butcher's adjoining restaurant, Quarter Master, serves its prime cuts in the form of steaks, burgers, lamb chops and other meaty delights. 

Bones and Blades, 1 Second St, Sai Ying Pun, Hong Kong, +852 2540 0052; bonesandblades.com

See also: Neighbourhood Guide: Where To Eat, Drink And Shop In Causeway Bay

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Arts neighbourhood guide sai ying pun restaurants bars brut okra pondi Krua Walaiphan ping pong 129 potato head live zero

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