Introducing coconut water’s tastier, much more indulgent sibling: fresh coconut juice.
For those that grew up with fresh coconut juice, you might remember a time before the coconut water trend landed in Hong Kong a few years back and the city solely devoted its love to the fresh stuff. Ran by unassuming mom-and-pops in obscure neighbourhoods, fresh coconut juice was the chosen thirst quencher in the sweltering Hong Kong heat, the indulgent creation of blended coconut with ice and an added splash of evaporated milk.
While the creamy concoction is not as popular as it was back in its heyday now — probably due to its meticulous preparation process — some faithful vendors that are working hard to keep the traditional Hong Kong beverage alive, without skimping on premium ingredients. While temperatures continue to soar up, up and up this summer, find solace in these, the best fresh coconut juices in Hong Kong.
Here are Hong Kong’s best fresh coconut milk drinks and juices:
King of Coconut (椰汁大王)
With multiple locations across Hong Kong, King of Coconut shoots straight to the top as the city’s most popular fresh coconut juice vendor. Often embedded within a tighter network of street food stalls for a convenient nearby sip, KoC blends together fresh coconut milk — of the Thai or Malaysian kind — evaporated milk and ice for a sweet, easy and simple instant refresher.
King of Coconut, various locations including G/F, 72 Bute Street, Mong Kok, Kowloon, Hong Kong
Coconut Specialists (椰子樂)
Nestled in the quiet avenues of Fanling is Coconut Specialists. Running strong for thirteen years, this local stall specialises in fresh coconut juices prepared by founder Uncle Van. Rather than just your typical creation of blended coconut with evaporated milk and ice, Van adopts a Taiwanese twist to his beverage by adding in specialty toppings usually featured in the add-on section of bubble tea menus, from red bean paste to herbal jelly, puddings and agar. Each cupful is quality checked by Van and prepared in the most meticulous, multi-step process involving soaking a coconut in filtered water, then dividing two blends of coconut slushie and coconut milk before being mixed back together again.
Coconut Specialists, G/F, 69A Wo Tai Street, Luen Wo Hui, Fanling, New Territories, Hong Kong
Century Coconut Milk (世紀士多)
Century Coconut Milk is To Kwa Wan’s best-kept secret. A family-run stall with humble beginnings as a coconut juice cart 50 years ago, Century has maintained its well-deserved reputation as the freshest, richest, most creamiest coconut juices in the city having sold, at their peak, 1,000 cups a day. Now downsized from its original corner-shop location, Century’s menu only features the singular serve of fresh coconut milk that’s carefully hand shaved before blending to order.
Century Coconut Milk, 28 Tam Kung Road, To Kwa Wan, Kowloon, Hong Kong, +852 6097 0001
Joe’s Coconut (Joe 椰)
Tai Po’s Joe’s Coconut is, of course, run by Joe himself, a former businessman that enrolled himself in cooking classes after his company shuttered. Located in the busy squares of Tai Po market, the hidden storefront is small and simple, with only enough room for Joe and his wife. Together, they churn out some of the freshest coconut juices, following a specific criteria of Thai and Malaysian coconuts to replicate the authentic flavours of tradition fresh coconut juice. You won’t spot any machinery on site, everything is done by hand with simple tools of hammers and spanners and the all-natural preference continues down to the juice itself, made with only three ingredients — coconut oil, coconut water and fresh coconut milk — without any added sugar.
Joe’s Coconut, Shop B2, 9 On Fu Road, Tai Po, New Territories, Hong Kong, +852 6700 0880