Cities throughout the world have one. An institution for weekend dim sum that has been passed through the generations – crowded, bustling, noisy, not the best, but adored without excpetion. Maxim's Palace deftly falls into that category. It’s a cut above many such institutions, with its sense of occasion: big windows, big chandeliers, white tablecloths and dim sum trolleys at the ready, serving the full gamut of tasty temptations. Cheap it is, charming or particularly cheerful it ain’t.
Address: 2nd Floor, Low BLK, Hong King City Hall, Central
Epic views of the Hong Kong skyline combined with food from a kitchen that continues to play to the top of its game make this, for many, the apotheosis of Sunday lunchtime treats. Try the port or shrimp and sea cucumber dumplings from a dim sum platter and enjoy the dazzling interiors designed by the late Sir Terrence Conran.
Address: Hotel Icon, 17 Science Museum Road, Tsim Sha Tsui East, Kowloon
Forgive the muted ambience of this Cantonese restaurant decked out in burlwood panels and raw silk wall coverings, as the food here is first class. Don’t miss the unimpeachable char siu baos (steamed pork buns) and exquisite shrimp dumplings washed down with a range of wonderful teas. The world will be a better place.
Address: 20 Nathan Road, Tsim Sha Tsui
Packed to the gills with hungry regulars who make this their canteen of choice for first-rate fried noodles, soup and moreish casseroled chicken. No prizes for the decor unless you’re a student of patterned, heavy carpets, sit-up-straight chairs and stiff white table-cloths. Service exemplary.
Address: 121 Sai Yee Street, Mongkok
For a combination of art and amazing though fairly pricey food, head to this stylish restaurant in the Central neighbourhood, and sample such delights as siu mai (pork and shrimp dumplings) and abalone puffs that come with diced chicken.
Address: Level 3, Shanghai Tang Mansion, 1 Duddell Street, Central
The mall in Admiralty is home to this innovative, gastronomic restaurant by the estimable Aqua Group, with all the stylish razzamatazz and clever design that that entails. It has become a destination for dim sum aficionados, who go a bundle on the likes of wagyu puffs, truffle har gao and ginger lobster bao.
Address: 124/Level 1, Pacific Place, Admiralty
This nicely decked-out landmark in Wan Chai reels in a discerning crowd with assured cooking. It’s a weekend destination for well heeled Hong Kong families who jump at the chance to sample this level of dim sum. Don’t miss the honey-glazed char sui and exquisite har gau and siu mai (shrimp and pork dumplings).
Address: Johnston Road, 33-45, Shop 3
What’s not to like about the combination of a prime harbourside location together with exceptional Cantonese cuisine and a ritzy setting? The dim sum menu is its match, delivered by an A1 brigade playing to the top of its game.
Address: Inter-Continental Hong Kong, 18 Salisbury Rd, Tsim Sha Tsui
Perfectly located for financiers in need of a lunchtime fix, Lei Garden has shed its 70s patina to become a swish, dim sum focused canteen with a range of menus to aid speedy lunchtime eating at reasonable prices. Understandably popular. Often frenetic.
Address: Shop 3008-11, 3/F, International Finance Centre
Despite being an indulgent treat on account of its well-mannered setting and tip-top service, there is something missing here in terms of feel-good factor. No such problems with the food and drink which nails it on all fronts, including some first-rate dim sum.
Address: Level 6, Cordis, 555 Shanghai St, Mong Kok
Great views of Victoria Harbour are hardly the point at this Four Seasons jewel that is the best and most luxurious dim sum restaurant in HK. Delicately crafted, beautifully presented, this is an experience that transcends category dining. Service with precision and pride. Note that dim sum is only served at lunchtime.
Address: 20 Nathan Road, Tsim Sha Tsui
If you’re looking for traditional fare at a great price, there are now a few of these restaurants dotted across Hong Kong including this particular favourite in the Hung Hom area. The decor may not be up to much but rave reviews flood in for the original Chinese cooking, of meat, fish and vegetables – all at very reasonable prices. Take note of the celebrated har-grow or siu. Not the best for instagram but a great filling station.
Address: Wuhu Street, Hung Hom area
Tim Ho Wan has been a great asset to the North Point culinary scene ever since it was spotted by Mr Michelin at the end of the noughties. Unsurprisingly it’s on most lists, and justifiably so, with food this good and prices this low. Colourful, frenetic, sometimes chaotic, it’s a pastiche of what makes Hong Kong great.
Address: North Point, Wharf Road, Seaview Building
Ignore the dining-room's somewhat corporate feel – shades of the boardroom circa 1990 – there’s a savvy kitchen behind the scenes. Soup, sautéed pork or beef, or casserole rich in spices alongside crispy duck reward the gastronome handsomely.
Address: Shop L5-8, 5/F, APM Millennium City 5, 418 Kwun Tong Road, Kwun Tong
Luxury, views and Michelin stars are just the start of the Tin Lung Heen experience but for many it’s the weekend dim sum for which they travel. Try steamed turnip cake with fish maw in chili sauce or fresh shrimp dumplings washed down with mind-blowing tea.
Address: 1 Austin Road West, Kowloon
If you’ve got children, or just an infectious sense of fun, you may wish to try this place – either the branch in TST or the one in Central. As well as dim sum at reasonable prices, don’t miss the cartoon chocolate buns that have a cheeky twist. CURRENTLY CLOSED
Address: Nathan Road, Tsim Sha Tsui