Green living is a great way to integrate into your diet to kick start a healthy 2018. If you’re a vegetarian or vegan, satisfying your hunger pangs in Hong Kong may seem like a difficult mission. Fret not! theDesk team has gathered a list of F&B outlets in our Sai Wan neighbourhood that will leave even meat lovers feeling satisfied.
Work out a sweat after a class of Muay Thai, sip artisanal coffee and enjoy a fresh bowl of salad all within a shared space. Tucked within training facility called Warrior Academy, the Elephas comprises of a health-food and coffee bar, with a variation of vibrant coloured salads, along with proteins such as norewegian salmon, minced chicken with avocado and more for the omnivores. A favourite amongst expat members, this place is a short walk from our flagship space at Sai Wan when you’re busy and in need of a quick salad fix.
- Hours: Mon – Fri 12 pm – 8 pm & Sat 12 pm – 5 pm
- Venue: Shop 118, 1/F, Hong Kong Plaza, 188 Connaught Road West, Sai Wan
- Web: www.theelephas.com
Bijas Vegetarian Restaurant
Tucked inside Hong Kong University, eco-conscious Bijas serves a scrumptious green buffet lunch of Chinese vegetarian dishes from 11:30 am to 2:30 pm every day. It’s catered not only to students, but to the public as well. To reduce food waste too, the eatery uses a payment-per-gramme system. With inspirational quotes plastered across the walls, this Buddhist-inspired restaurant sports a calm and laidback vibe. Bijas offers a delicious variety and is reasonably priced!
- Hours: Mon-Fri 8 am – 9 pm & Sat 11:30 am – 9 pm
- Venue: G/F, Run Run Shaw Tower, Centennial Campus, The University of Hong Kong
- More: www.facebook.com/BijasHK/
One of our favourite spots in Sai Ying Pun for Spanish tapas, Chico Chica boasts an array of gluten and veggie-friendly dishes that we love. The ‘patatas bravas’ potatoes with manchego cheese ($68) is the standout. We also love the Spanish green peppers in fried garlic ($72) and the cheese platter that’s served with breadsticks and quince jelly ($98). Small but satisfying vegetarian option.
- Hours: Thu – Tue 12 pm – 2:30 pm, 6 pm – 10:30 pm & Sun 12 pm – 3:15 pm, 6 pm – 9:30 pm
- Venue: G/F, 70, Third Street, Sai Ying Pun
- More: www.chico-chicahk.com
Classified, which has branches across town, have a different menu for each meal of the day. Each of these menus have a variety of options for the vegetarians. Try the rye toast with feta cheese, avocados and pickled red onions for $80. The can’t-miss item is the halloumi and sun-dried tomato burger that’s served for $108. The patty is bigger than the bun. Students, cut those prices in half because it’s 50 percent off for you!
- Hours: Open daily 7:30 am – 12 am (last food order at 10:30 pm)
- Venue: Shop 1B, G/F, The Upton, 345 Des Voeux Road West, Sai Ying Pun
- More: www.classifiedfood.com
Coffee by Zion
Right opposite Sai Ying Pun MTR Station Exit B1 is Coffee by Zion. Best known for its cups of joe, this spot also serves an assortment of vegetarian delights for the sweet-tooths and the snackers. Want a pastry? Zion has you covered. Our favourite, however, is the all-day vegetarian breakfast. For $88, you get a platter consisting of scrambled eggs, mashed avocados, asparagus, portobello mushrooms, fried mushrooms, baked beans and cherry tomatoes, all served with toast and salad. If that doesn’t stuff you, top up $30 and get a coffee or a cake with it. Breakfast for dinner, anyone?
- Hours: Open daily, 8 am – 8 pm
- Venue: Shop 1, Chun King Court, 83 First Street, Sai Ying Pun
- More: www.fb.com/coffeebyzion
This all raw and organic juicery is a golden find for vegans and vegetarians in Hong Kong. And our favourite branch is up on Sai Ying Pun’s Third Street. This spot sells a range of beverages and snacks that encourage a healthy lifestyle. Plus, it’s all exceptionally yummy for your tummy! Don’t miss out on the $80 heavenly tasting smoothie bowl — it’s exclusive to this branch and we know why… the best things come to those in SYP.
- Hours: Mon – Sun 10 am – 8 pm, Public Holidays 10 am – 6 pm
- Venue: Shop A, 1/F, Fook Moon Bldg, 56 – 72 Third Street, Sai Ying Pun
- More: www.geniejuicery.com
Boasting an excellent array of mostly Western dishes, Jaspas chain of pub-style restaurants are always buzzing with customers. They aren’t vegetarian by a long shot but the menus are certainly veggie-friendly. There’s a section specifically for herbivores, including the veggie fajitas ($138), the vegetarian burrito ($145), the exotic wild mushroom risotto ($150) and the pumpkin and asparagus risotto ($145). Plus, if you flip through the rest of the menu, you’ll find a variety of other dishes that fit into the green category. Don’t be afraid to ask the chefs to make something meatless too. They’re pretty accommodating.
- Hours: Open daily 8 am – 11 pm
- Venue: Shop B, G/F, 83 Catchick Street, Kennedy Town and 53 – 65 High Street, Sai Ying Pun
- More: www.casteloconcepts.com
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LN Fortunate Coffee
Fortunate for vegans, this place. LN Fortunate Coffee is perfect for grabbing a small veggie bite or a whole herbivorous meal. Though the Sai Ying Pun restaurant files under vegetarian, the majority of the menu here consists of vegan platters. And there’s a twist: the ‘meat’ is vegan. A vegan hot dog or burger costs only $38, for example, but if vegan meat doesn’t appeal to your taste buds, maybe dumplings and enoki mushrooms in udon soup ($78) will. Those starved for more can order a ‘Fortunate Set’ ($98) that sees you tucking into a bread-based main course with a salad bowl, potato wedges and juice.
- Hours: Open daily 9 am – 10 pm
- Venue: G/F, Altro, No. 118 Second Street, Sai Ying Pun
- More: www.fb.com/LN-Fortunate-Coffee-HK-1579088455746546
When it comes to class vegetarian acts in Kennedy Town, Orchid Veggie is number one. We love the sweet veggie desserts in here and we also love the snacks and mains that are served up in an almost coffee shop-style ambience. We also love the way the team here clearly labels which dishes are made with eggs, onions and milk for veggies and vegans with distinct preferences. Recommended dishes to try include five Japanese teppanyaki options (starting at $128) and a range of herbivorous sandwiches (starting at $30) that come served alongside some ace Chinese teas.
- Hours: Open daily 11 am – 10 pm
- Venue: Shop 2, G/F, Yue Yee Mansion, 18A Belcher’s Street, Kennedy Town
- Web: www.facebook.com/orchidveggie
Po Lin Yuen
Vegetarian fast food dim sum! Po Lin Yuen takeaway in Sai Wan is pretty unique. Choose from an assorted bunch of dumplings, spring rolls, buns and radish cakes and get them served in an instant at Po Lin Yuen’s front window. And it’s only $12 for two pieces. The shop is completely vegetarian but they do serve a few egg items that they will point out if you ask. And theDesk is right across the road! Come pop to see us and feel free to bring some of the snacks in with you…
- Hours: Open daily 7:45 am – 9 pm
- Venue: 308 Queen’s Rd West, Sai Ying Pun
- Web: www.fb.com/Po-Lin-Yuen-Vegetarian-Restaurant-寶蓮苑素食-129447283764287
An abundance of appetising and affordable vegetarian Indian dishes are available at K-Town’s Riya Food. Pretty much half of the family-run restaurant’s menu is vegetarian with Indian delights such as masala papad ($10), mango lassi ($15), saag paneer ($50) and biryani curry ($45) all made for the green lovers. As you can see, the prices are super-reasonable and if you pay $10 more, you get a basket of naan with your meal. Little note for our Jain readers who don’t eat root vegetables: the chefs at Riya can custom-make any dish Jain-friendly just for you.
- Hours: Open daily 10 am – 11 pm
- Venue: Shop 2, G/F, 71-77 Smithfield, Kennedy Town
- Web: www.fb.com/Riya-Food-551808094832341