Winter is close upon us, which means it’s time to turn our attention to soups, clay pot dishes and other winter warmers to get us through the colder months. Although Hong Kong rarely experiences freezing temperatures, there’s something familiar and comforting about gathering around the table as the holiday season approaches to tuck into steaming hot pots and health-boosting soups. To warm up your table, these new menus around town should do the trick.

Crabs and claypots at Tycoon Tann

Modern Chinese eatery Tycoon Tann is offering a nourishing taste of seasonal specialties with their brand new winter menu; available now through February, this distinguished offering might just present the perfect opportunity to impress during holiday gatherings and long-overdue meet-ups. Take a seat amongst the apothecary-inspired knick-knacks in the ground-floor Mod Bar or head up to the first-floor dining room to tuck into seasonal specialties such as the newly launched deep-fried crab with dried chilli, garlic and rice flour rolls, or the double-boiled silkie chicken soup with fresh ginseng (HK$268) — boiled for six hours with preserved ham to enhance its detoxifying and health-boosting properties.

Other highlights of the winter menu include claypot rice in casserole with preserved meat and Chinese sausage (HK$328), deep-fried crab with dried chilli, garlic and rice flour rolls (HK$698), and the steamed rice with charcoal-grilled Hungarian Mangalica hogs drenched in honey sauce with a delicate pan-fried sunny-side up egg. The hearty à la carte offerings are also peppered throughout Tycoon Tann’s festive 8-course Winter Solstice Menu, Festive Brunch, and 8-course Christmas & New Year’s Menus to tide you through the holidays.

Tycoon Tann, G/F, 74 Wellington Street, Central, Hong Kong, +852 3125 3228

Snake soup returns to Cuisine Cuisine

Snake soup is a deep-seated Cantonese culinary tradition; if you think it’s a little too far outside of your comfort zone (tastes just like chicken, right?), one sip of this soul-warming soup is sure to sway your view. Typically boiled for hours with snake meat and bones, chicken, mushrooms, and loads of herbs, spices and ginger, the resulting broth is delightfully thick and viscous, punctuated by a bright hit of sinus-clearing pepper.

Particularly popular in the winter months, you can get snake soup at many shops around town: Ser Wong Fun is a perpetual favourite, as is a homestyle version at Cuisine Cuisine, crafted by head chef Yuk-lam Lee. Head to the ifc mall branch to get a taste of their traditional braised five-snake soup, a generations-old recipe which uses five different types of snake meat, shredded into threads and braised with fish maw for a luscious, earthy and complex stew that’s topped off with white chrysanthemum petals and kaffir lime leaves (HK$1,280 for four persons, advance order recommended). Supplement the meal with all new à la carte dishes including supreme chicken broth with crab claw in baby pumpkin, stewed duck with dried mandarin peels, and braised white fungus topped with crab meat.

Cuisine Cuisine, Shop 3101-3107, 3/F, IFC Mall, 8 Finance Street, Central, Hong Kong, +852 2393 3933

Hokkaido hotpot at Obihiro Hageten

It’s time to gather the family around the table for dunking and dipping, as Hong Kong’s restaurants gear up for the hot pot season with seasonal ingredients and new autumnal offerings. At Obihiro Hageten, the seasoned hot pot restaurant is helping to stave off the colder months with two new soup bases and a host of seasonal ingredients imported in from the produce-rich region of Hokkaido. Located in Elements mall, the first overseas location of this popular restaurant from Sapporo is run by third-generation owner Sei Yano, who adheres to the original founder’s motto of upholding the fundamental integrity of the produce and respecting top-notch seasonal ingredients.

The first unique offering is soy milk with collagen, featuring a soupy soy milk and chicken base plumped up with collagen for added health benefits. Dunk in assorted trays of tender A4 Wagyu beef, vegetables, mushrooms, and tofu — topped off with ramen at the end to absorb all the remaining goodness of the creamy soup base. Alternatively, opt for the Supreme Fisherman’s hot pot, which utilises a mix of sea urchin paste, bonito broth and chicken soy milk broth with seafood specialties including bafun uni, king crab, snapper, salmon and red shrimp, paired with hon-shimeji mushrooms, leeks and thick roasted tofu.

Obihiro Hageten, Shop 2103-05, 2/F, Elements, 1 Austin Road West, Tsim Sha Tsui, Hong Kong, +852 2196 8310

Leslie Yeh
Editor in Chief
Having worked as a lifestyle editor for almost 10 years, Leslie is thrilled to be writing about the topic she loves most: wining and dining. When she's not out pounding the pavement for the latest new restaurant opening or tracking food trends, Leslie can be found at home whipping up a plate of rigatoni vodka and binge-watching Netflix with a glass of Sauvignon Blanc in hand.