With high humidity, summer in Hong Kong can easily turn your dream Summer sales shopping spree into a challenging activity. The city quite literally turns up the heat, and the shade of an open umbrella suddenly becomes a luxury.
But fret not! Keeping your cool is as easy as dropping by one of the city’s many beloved dessert spots. From traditional sweet soups to fusion desserts with a twist, these Hong Kong cool eats will leave you with a refreshing aftertaste!
Sang Ji Sheung Sweet Soup, Yuen Kee Dessert
If there ever was a hierarchy of dessert spots, Yuen Kee Dessert would be right up there with the legends. A stalwart in the local dessert scene, this place is well-loved by locals and visitors alike for its no-nonsense take on traditional Cantonese sweet treats. Their Sang Ji Sheung Sweet Soup, in particular, stands out among the crowd. Packed with tons of health benefits and refreshingly sweet, it’s little wonder why many swear by it on a hot summer day. Grab a bowl at 32 Centre St, Sai Ying Pun from 1 p.m. to 11 p.m. everyday.
Hong Kong Stocking Ice Milk Tea (奶茶), Lan Fong Yuen
Another one of Hong Kong’s many gastronomic legends, Lan Fong Yuen is widely believed to have invented the now ubiquitous Hong Kong milk tea. So legendary, in fact that to not make the pilgrimage to the Mecca of milk tea is to have not visited Hong Kong at all. Lan Fong Yuen’s “Silk Stocking” Milk Tea packs a powerful aroma that retains the unadulterated richness of the tea; a serving of evaporated milk adds to the tea’s silky feel, making it smooth and easy with every sip. Enjoy a cup at any of Lan Fong Yuen’s three branches at Gage Street, WK Square or Shun Tak Centre from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. every Monday to Saturday.
Milk Custard, Yee Shun Milk Company
Keeping a no-frills, fresh taste is also the hallmark of Yee Shun Milk Company. Yee Shun Milk Company is best known for its selection of pure egg-white and egg-yolk milk custards. Deceivingly simple, the milk custard’s mildly sweet undertones are complemented by traditional toppings like red bean and lotus nuts. Discover a whole new side to milk with Yee Shun’s milk custard at 506 Lockhart Road, Causeway Bay from 12pm – 12am daily. Other branches include 244 Sai Yeung Choi Street South, Prince Edward, Kowloon.
Pineapple Bun, Kam Wah Cafe
Kam Wah Cafe’s crisp and sugary Bo Luo Bao, or Pineapple Buns, are the perfect pick-me-up after traipsing about in Hong Kong’s summer heat. While the place is perpetually packed with long queues, the fresh-from-the-oven fragrance of piping hot buns and the generous butter slab sandwiched between will leave you craving for round two. Grab a bun at 47 Bute Street, Prince Edward, Mong Kok, from 6.30 a.m. to 11 p.m. daily.
Mango Sago Pomelo, Tei Mou Koon
Anyone familiar with traditional Hong Kong desserts will surely vouch for a bowl of chilled Mango Sago Pomelo, and no one does it better than Tei Mou Koon. Serving up authentic Hong Kong sweet treats in the heart of Kowloon since 1990, Tei Mou Koon’s Mango Pomelo Sago is simple, homely yet rich with flavour. Sweeten up your summer in Hong Kong at 47 Fuk Lo Tsun Rd, Kowloon City, Hong Kong from 12 noon to 12.45 a.m. daily.
Sugar Cane Juice, Kung Lee Herbal Tea Shop
Most folks in Southeast Asia are already familiar with sugarcane juice (and even more so the oh-so-good sugar rush that comes with it), but Kung Lee Herbal Tea Shop’s heritage style and other unique sugar cane desserts still make for a pleasantly refreshing surprise. The place continues to retain much of its ’60s retro feel, and locals still stand by its consistently high quality juices and desserts. Treat yourself to a cup at 60 Hollywood Rd, Central, from 12 noon to 12.45 a.m. daily.
Beancurd pudding, Kung Wo Beancurd Factory
Beancurd pudding is Hong Kong’s answer to Taho, and Kung Wo Beancurd Factory’s beancurd puddings have been childhood favourites for generations of Hongkongers. Silky smooth and bursting with soybean flavour, Kung Wo Beancurd Factory’s beancurd puddings are made from beans ground by hand-operated millstone. Look no further for a bowl of traditional, authentic and delicious beancurd pudding. Available at 118 Pei Ho Street, Sham Shui Po, from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily.
Any list of cool summer treats is obviously incomplete without ice cream, and Hong Kong has many takes on everyone’s beloved dessert. Once a frequent sight on the streets of Hong Kong, red-white-blue Mobile Softee vans serving ice-cold soft serves, nut-covered “drumsticks” and more-than-satisfying ice cream cups hark back to nostalgic times; Little Bao’s modest ice cream sandwiches boast generous blocks of premium ice cream sandwiched between crispy fried buns and drizzled with sweet condensed milk, salted caramel or chocolate, while Choo Choo’s sweet treats offer a luxurious experience on par with upscale dessert joints.
Mobile Softee vans can usually be found at or near tourist hotspots like Tsim Sha Tsui or Mong Kok; Enjoy Little Bao’s ice cream sandwiches at 66 Staunton Street, Central from 6 pm to 11 pm every Monday to Saturday, or treat yourself like a king or queen with Choo Choo’s opulent desserts at 364-368 Shun Ning Rd, So Uk, from 12 to 3 p.m. or 6 to 10 p.m. daily.
Best of all, Hong Kong’s refreshing must-eats are just part of the city’s summer treats — check out Discover Hong Kong’s great list of to-dos and to-eats for a “soul cool” vacation this summer!