A Look At The World’s First Michelin Three-Star Chinese Restaurant
Part of our routine when visiting Four Seasons Hotel Hong Kong involves lunch at Lung King Heen, the world’s first Chinese restaurant to be awarded the prestigious Michelin three stars. What makes the restaurant’s story even more unique is that Executive Chef Chan Yan Tak never went through any formal chef training. The stars were earned through his hard work and special knack for mixing mouthwatering combinations of flavors and textures. I’ve eaten there multiple times throughout the years and it’s truly a special experience for a number of reasons.
Cantonese food outside of dim sum can be a bit exotic for non-adventurous palates, but I highly recommend stepping outside the box, especially here. The weekday set lunch provides a perfect opportunity to sample an array of delicacies mixed with more common favorites from the hundreds of items on the menu.
Lung King Heen Executive Lunch Menu
Most Hong Kong restaurants offer set menus at lunch, a very busy time in the city. On the day we visited, the Executive Lunch featured the following:
Chef’s Dim Sum Selection (It happened to be my favorite barbecued pork bun!)
Soup of the Day
Barbecue Combination (Crispy Suckling Pig, Beef Shin with Gravy, Marinated Jellyfish)
Wok-fried Beef Tenderloin with Capsicum and Gravy
Fried Rice with Shrimp, Barbecued Pork, and Spring Onion or Shrimp and Vegetable Dumplings with Noodles and Soup
Sweetened Walnut Cream
From melt-in-your-mouth beef to flavorful soups, every dish was spectacular. Was I skeptical about the jellyfish? Definitely, but it was so tender that even my 6-year-old liked it. The baked barbecued pork bun is my go-to order (perfect flavor and delicate crust) and I lucked out it was featured in the set lunch. The dish that most surprised me? I wasn’t expecting to like the sweetened walnut cream but I lapped up its chocolate-like goodness. Yes, it’s a lot of food so take your time and sip plenty of Jasmine tea (staff will keep your glass topped up) in between. At $485 HKD (about $62 USD) plus 10% service, it’s also a deal.
Lung King Heen Kids Menu
With Lung King Heen a short elevator ride down from our former hotel apartment, we’ve eaten there a decent amount over the years but only recently with my daughter. The restaurant welcomes children ages three and older, which is a quite common policy in Hong Kong. Budding foodies can sample Michelin three-star cuisine from the extensive kids menu including:
Braised Tofu with Minced Beef and Fresh Crab Meat
Braised Seasonal Vegetables with Fresh Mushrooms
Shrimp Wontons with Udon in Soup
Congee with Fillet of Garoupa and Egg
My daughter, who dressed for the occasion in a pink cheongsam (Chinese dress) to celebrate the occasion, loves a half-portion of chicken fried rice and noodles with mixed vegetables. I will also tell you that she ate most of my beef shin and marinated jellyfish. She wasn’t the only kid in the restaurant, though we probably had the only stuffed panda seated at our table. Explain to your young jetsetters what a special restaurant Lung King Heen is and they just may rise to the occasion. So, when in Hong Kong with kids, definitely don’t rule out a meal here.
A restaurant can’t earn three Michelin stars without flawless service. Lung King Heen functions like a well-oiled machine where staff almost seems to anticipate needs before you even know you have them, but without being intrusive. Food served in courses is paced well though timing is happily adjusted according to your needs. Guests include a mix of local families enjoying a meal out, business lunches and the occasional tourist.
The restaurant boasts chic dark woods accented by mauve and contemporary Chinese decor. Natural light floods the space as floor-to-ceiling windows reveal a stunning view of Victoria Harbour. Make a reservation at Lung King Heen well in advance, if possible. It’s popular because there really isn’t any other place in the world like it.
Lung King Heen
Four Seasons Hotel Hong Kong, 4/F
8 Finance Street
Read my full article about Executive Chef Chan Yan Tak on Taste by Four Seasons.