Tim Ho Wan – a one Michelin starred restaurant and the CHEAPEST Michelin starred restaurant IN THE WORLD. It was created by Mak Piu Gor who was the dimsum master at Lung King Heen at the Four Seasons Hotel, the first Chinese restaurant in the world to receive three Michelin stars. The store is very modest and not pretentious. I actually couldn’t find it until I spotted the queue of people.
There are 3 Tim Ho Wan branches in Hong Kong – Mongkok, Central and Sham Shui Po. Mongkok is their original and main branch where it was awarded a Michelin star. Sham Shui Po also has been awarded one in 2012.
Being only a 5 min walk from my hotel I knew I had to go – dragging my sickened, weak and dying body to eat on the last day here (this was just how desperate I wanted to go). Reading horrific reviews about people having to wait 2 – 5 hours for a seat I was truly scared. I arrived at 9:15 and there was already 10 people lining up outside the store.
The char siu bao (Baked bun with BBQ pork) is Tim Ho Wan’s signature dish. It is so incredibly different to the typical steamed char xiu bao. It is crunchy and crispy on the outside, a little bit like bo luo bao (pineapple bun) or even melon bun, stuffed with sweet, caramelised pork.
Char Xiu Bao (Baked bun with BBQ pork) – [$17HK, $2.20 AUD]
Har gow (steamed prawn dumplings) is my absolutely favourite yum cha dish. Ever. The dumplings were plump and juicy, translucent thin skin with the prawns just barely visible from the surface. Omg look at those hand pleats so perfectly made. The true reason why only Asians can make dumplings? We have small hands ;)
Har gow (Steamed prawn dumplings) – [$24 HK, $3.10 AUD]
Siu mai or dim sim is a steamed pork dumpling with shrimp. It didn’t taste that good to me, it was a bit hard and not tender.
Siu mai (Steamed pork dumpling with shrimp) – [$24 HK, $3.10 AUD]
I wasn’t actually planning to order the chicken feet but at the last minute I was like screw it, what the hey. Not regretting it at all, the soft and gelatinous chicken feet covered in black bean sauce was delicious.
Steamed chicken’s feet with black bean sauce – [$14 HK, $1.80 AUD]
The turnip cake had lup cheong and pieces of turnip in it, pan fried on both sides to get a crispy layer. Yum :)
Lo Bak Go (Pan fried turnip cake) – [$14 HK, $1.80 AUD]
Ham Sui Kok (deep fried dumpling with salted meat) is another favourite dish of mine. It is a deep fried crispy on the outside, chewy in the middle, filled with pork mince, mushroom and savoury meaty sauce. To be honest I was pretty pissed off as this point as I had to wait 1.5 hrs just for this last and final dish to arrive, probably a 30-40 min between the previous dish to come out. Everyone who I had come in with already left, people that were in the second batch had started to leave too. I also saw other tables get given their ham sui kok so I had no idea what the hell was taking them so long to make mine :/
Ham Sui Kok (Deep fried dumpling with salted meat) –– [$12 HK, $1.50 AUD]
The food was really good here and is a must go to place if you every go to HK. However it takes a very long time for the food to come out but it seems to be the luck of the draw. Even though I was in the middle of the first group to get in, I was the last person to get out. The portions are quite small as well, so I would just order more if you are gonna go in a group. I ordered more than enough for my lonesome self :P Another word of advice is to get as much as you can and just put everything you can’t eat into a take-away box. They don’t charge extra for the box. I had yumcha food for dinner that night, still good when cold! XD All up I spent ~$110 HK, which is an equivalent of $14 AUD. What a bargain for lunch and dinner right?
Tim Ho Wan Mong Kok
Flat 8, Ground Floor, Phase 2, Tsui Yuen Mansion, 2-20 Kwong Wa St, Mong Kok, Hong Kong
Tel: +852 2332 2896
Tim Ho Wan Sham Shui Po
G/F, 9-11 Fuk Wing Street, Sham Shui Po, Kowloon
Tel: +852 2788 1226 or 2788 1220
Tim Ho Wan Hong Kong Station
Shop 12A, Hong Kong Station (Podium Level 1, IFC Mall) , Central, Hong Kong
Tel: +852 2332 3078