For the past five years, the team at Hong Kong Tatler Dining have had the task of reviewing hundreds of restaurants to ultimately select 20 that we feel represent the year's best dining experiences. It's a dynamic selection, with restaurants coming and going—this year, there are 7 newcomers, including one that returned after a two-year hiatus—and the list is debated over a period of several months, where we take into account everything from the creativity of the cooking to the knowledge of the staff. We're also always looking for that little extra something—a dedication and passion that electifies us when we sit down to eat, and leaves us full of wonder and excitement for the next meal to come. Among so many meals eaten, we're confident that these 20 restaurants have achieved just that.
* denotes new entry into the 2017 list
Amber’s dishes rarely follow a pattern, often setting trends with their endless experimentation under the watchful eye of culinary director Richard Ekkebus.
Amber, 7/F, The Landmark Mandarin Oriental, The Landmark, 15 Queen's Road Central, Central; +852 2132 0066
The menu at Arcane is concise, speaking fluently of the seasons with just mere pages of thoughtfully curated dishes that belong to no particular genre.
Arcane, 3/F, 18 On Lan Street, Central; +852 2728 0178
Belon is everything a modern bistro should be. Helmed by confident staff who aren’t afraid of a bit of banter, a busy Friday night at this buzzing venue is never short of good vibes.
Belon, G/F, 42-45 Elgin Street, Central; +852 2152 2872
When it comes to the food, brush aside any misconceptions about fussy French food in tiny proportions—each time we dine here, we leave clutching our sated stomachs, practically rolling out of the restaurant filled to the brim with all manner of fine ingredients.
Caprice, 6/F, Four Seasons Hotel Hong Kong, 8 Finance Street, Central; +852 3196 8860
Few have a similar depth of knowledge as chef Siu Hin-chi about Cantonese cooking, and particularly that it’s as much an art as it is a science—the jerking motion of a wok, the stroke of a metal spatula, the turning and tossing of ingredients as they mingle mid-air and fuse flavours within seconds.
Duddell's, 3/F-4/F, 1 Duddell Street, Central; +852 2525 9191
Chef Nicolas Boutin’s honed, modern French cooking is a tribute to the seasons, with dishes that are razor sharp in their presentation and precision.
Épure, Shop 403, 4/F, Ocean Centre, Harbour City, 17 Canton Road, Tsim Sha Tsui; +852 3185 8338
Fish School *
David Lai's Sai Ying Pun restaurant, opened in collaboration with restaurateur Yenn Wong of JIA Group, is a model for celebrating the best of our culinary heritage—all in a modish, contemporary space with refreshing, approachable service to boot.
Fish School, 100 Third Street, Sai Ying Pun; +852 2361 2966
Steering Gaddi’s in a new direction, Xavier Boyer’s creations have only become more exciting. His less-is-more approach accentuates the ingredients’ quality over their quantity, with strong insistence that freshness and simplicity precede any contrived efforts to be different.
Gaddi's, 1/F, The Peninsula Hong Kong, Salisbury Road, Tsim Sha Tsui; +852 2696 6763
Golden Flower plays up the strengths of chef Liu Guo-zhu’s Tan cuisine, maximising the textures and preserving the purity of flavours in each course of whimsical wonders. His rich broths are top-notch; jasmine blossoms and fresh clams float in a chicken consommé that has been simmered for more than eight hours and purified until clear.
Golden Flower, G/F, Wynn Macau, Rua Cidade de Sintra, Nape, Macau; +853 8986 3663
Unafraid to bring in ingredients not commonly associated with the Chinese kitchen, chef Tam Kwok-fung has continued to redefine what it means to be cooking on the boundaries of tradition and innovation, and of East and West.
Jade Dragon, 2/F, The Shops at The Boulevard, City of Dreams, Estrada do Istmo, Cotai; +853 8868 2822
Lai Heen *
In its purest essence, Lai Heen captures an era of food history that’s often overlooked and forgotten. Revisiting history and reliving it on the palate has never been any more satisfying than this.
Lai Heen, 51/F, The Ritz-Carlton, Macau, Estrada da Baía da Nossa Senhora da Esperança, Cotai; +853 8886 6868
Most, if not all of the fish and seafood used in chef Agustin Balbi’s kitchen is sustainable and responsibly sourced—a commitment that continues despite its logistical difficulties.
The Ocean, Shop 303-304, 3/F, The Pulse, 28 Beach Road, Repulse Bay; +852 2889 5939
Otto e Mezzo Macau
The menu has seasonality at its core and homemade pastas as its foundation. Italy may be very, very far away indeed—but being here could very well be the next best thing.
Otto e Mezzo Macau, Shop 1031, 1/F, Galaxy Macau, Estrada da Baia de Nossa Senhora da Esperanca, Cotai; +853 8883 2169
Pearl Dragon *
Chef Tam Kwok-fung is a master of new ideas, with great respect and appreciation for the traditional methods. His masterful techniques and fluid, innovative style cross over at Pearl Dragon, where a meal extends far beyond course after course of flavours and textures, resulting in a journey of discovery that’s paved with awe and enjoyment.
Pearl Dragon, Shop 2111, 2/F, Star Tower, Studio City Hotel, Estrada do Istmo, Cotai, Macau; +853 8865 6560
An animated open kitchen sees staff weave seamlessly through a dizzying flurry of flames, smoke and steam, sending out dishes such as baked red snapper swaddled in kombu, and crisp chargrilled Brink’s Farm chicken served with a Cantonese-inspired ginger and spring onion sauce.
Rhoda, G/F, Upton, 345 Des Voeux Road West, Sai Ying Pun; +852 2177 5050
Robuchon au Dôme
Guests visiting Macau’s Robuchon outpost should prepare two things: an open mind and an empty stomach. Under the restaurant’s opulent dome, an intricate crystal chandelier display hangs from the high ceiling and shimmering lights extend to every corner of the restaurant, where tables look out over Macau’s electrifying skyline and cityscape.
Shinji by Kanesaka *
Toru Osumi's profound dedication to the art of sushi is a welcome, sobering respite from the high-gloss levels of excess found elsewhere on the Cotai Strip.
Shinji by Kanesaka, 1/F, Crown Towers, City of Dreams, Estrada do Istmo, Cotai; +853 8868 7300
Chef Hideaki Sato’s will is to showcase the very best of Asian produce through a prism of finely honed French techniques, and this shines through a seasonally attuned menu that’s never short of twists and turns.
Ta Vie, 2/F, The Pottinger, 74 Queen’s Road Central, Central; +852 2668 6488
The Tasting Room
Under chef Guillaume Galliot’s guidance, The Tasting Room has grown. On its journey of maturity, it has established itself as not only a culinary hub for fine cuisine, but one that also boasts impeccable taste.
The Tasting Room, 3/F, Crown Towers, City of Dreams, Estrada do Istmo, Cotai; +853 8868 6681
Yan Toh Heen
Overall, Yan Toh Heen forgoes the rigid standards of Chinese cuisine and elevates its dishes with creativity, convincingly turning expectations on their head.
Yan Toh Heen, Lower Level, InterContinental Hong Kong, 18 Salisbury Road, Tsim Sha Tsui; +852 2313 2323
Hungry for more? See our past lists: