There are lots of places you can go to yum cha in Hong Kong, but here are our favourite restaurants to drink Chinese tea, eat dim sum, and enjoy traditional Cantonese treats.
While in the west, the best brunches consist of eggs Benedict, waffles, and bacon, here in Hong Kong we do it with dim sum and bottomless tea. We call this iconic ritual of Cantonese brunch yum cha (飲茶), which literally means “drink tea” as traditionally a lot of Chinese tea is involved. Living or visiting Hong Kong won’t be complete without trying the experience, but if you’re still wondering where to go for the really good options, we’ve rounded up the best restaurants for yum cha in Hong Kong. Grab your chopsticks, and get involved.
Where to go to yum cha in Hong Kong
Located in Central, Dragon-I is not only one of the city’s best nightclubs, but is also a popular spot for tasty yum cha in Hong Kong. During lunch time, you can go crazy on their all-you-can-eat menu that is definitely a value for money for those big eaters. Free of MSG, their Chinese dishes may not be the most authentic, but they create a unique taste that attracts the chic crowds.
Dragon-I, UG/F, The Centrium, 60 Wyndham Street, Central, Hong Kong, p. 3110 1222, 中環雲咸街60號中央廣場平台
2. Lin Heung Lau
Established in 1962, Lin Heung Lau is one of the oldest and most popular tea houses in Hong Kong, so you know you’re in good hands when it comes to Cantonese dim sum and Chinese teas. The restaurant is noisy yet fun, giving the guests an even more authentic yum cha experience. Don’t forget to also check out the tea house’s sibling restaurant, Lin Heung Kui (蓮香居), which will be preferred by those craving the old Guangdong-style yum cha. While you’re there, be sure to get their shrimp dumplings, xiao long bao, steamed sesame paste buns, fish maw, and bean curd rolls. So good!
Lin Heung Lau, 160-164 Wellington Street, Central, Hong Kong, p. 2544 4556, 中環威靈頓街160-164號蓮香樓
3. Saam Hui Yaat
Eat dim sum like the locals at Saam Hui Yaat, a humble yum cha restaurant located in Sai Ying Pun where the menu is written completely in Chinese. The tiny restaurant, at which you need to be prepared to sit beside strangers on their mis-matched plastic and wooden stools when it gets crowded, serves classic dim sum like steamed pork buns, steamed prawn dumplings, and rice dough wrapped beef, as well as Chinese teas.
Saam Hui Yaat also features on our guide to best affordable lunches in Sai Ying Pun.
Saam Hui Yaat, 11 Pokfulam Road, Sai Ying Pun, Hong Kong, p. 2547 3917, 西營盤薄扶林道11號叁去壹
4. Maxim’s Palace
One of the most famous spots for yum cha in Hong Kong is Maxim’s Palace. The Guangdong-style dim sum is served the traditional way using trolleys, from which you can choose the dishes you want. Another perk of eating here is that you won’t run out of things to order, as the restaurant has over 100 choices of dim sum to choose from! They have a good vegetarian selection, too, so everyone will be smiling after this.
Maxim’s Palace (美心皇宮) has several branches across Hong Kong.
5. Dim Dim Sum
A restaurant specialising in dim sum, Dim Dim Sum may be small in size, but it regularly attracts a large crowd, thanks to their delicious dim sum, including shrimp dumplings, custard buns, BBQ pork buns, and more. Another thing we love about this restaurant is that although they are not the most modern, they are well prepared with various menus in Chinese, English, Japanese, and Korean, so tourists won’t have to go through a hard time ordering.
Dim Dim Sum has locations in Mong Kok and Jordan.
6. One Dim Sum
Located in Prince Edward, One Dim Sum is a Michelin-starred eatery that offers a great variety of dim sum. Expect the classic dishes like shrimp dumplings, pork dumplings, rice sheet rolls, steamed buns, and many more. A visit to One Dim Sum will not be complete without getting its popular perfectly textured roast pork buns, so make sure you leave enough room for this local favourite.
One Dim Sum, G/F, 209A-209B Tung Choi Street, Prince Edward, Hong Kong, p. 2677 7888, 太子通菜街209A-209B號地舖一點心
Pure Veggie House (closed)
Who says you can’t eat shao mai and xiao long bao if you’re vegan? Head over to Pure Veggie House for a delicious vegan dim sum feast where you can eat guilt-free yum cha in Hong Kong. The dishes are delicate and flavourful, making sure that vegans are not missing out on this iconic eating ritual of Hong Kong.
Pure Veggie House, 6/F, M88, 2-8 Wellington Street, Central, Hong Kong, p. 2525 0552