Hong Kong is a city full of people with big appetites, little budgets, and even less time. Unfortunately, this has the tendency to culminate in many a ‘McBurger’ and a real struggle to fulfill your five a day quota (potatoes don’t count). However, that’s not to say that we’re without options. Whether deliberate or incidental, the Sheung Wan district has in recent years transformed into somewhat of a healthy hub for eateries, including a combination of a few of the city’s tried and tested favourites and some newer restaurants to keep the hunger pangs (and the doctor) at bay with a fair few apples along the way.
Knead offers a substantial list of sandwiches and salads, or a build-your-own menu, including a wide range of ingredients to suit your dietary preferences and needs (including a gluten-free bread option). These lunches quell the notion that salads can’t be filling, as the deceptively large bowls are filled to the brim with hearty ingredients. With puns aplenty on the walls, menus and placards, it’s also a great place to sit down morning, noon or night – and they have a great happy hour should the latter be your choice.
The latest offering by the Mana group sits atop a steep staircase from Sheung Wan, building in a mini workout before a healthy snack. Unlike the flagship café on Wellington Street where salads are their staple trade, Mana Café has a whole host of aptly named flatbreads for vegetarians and vegans, including coffee alternatives and fresh coconuts. Next to Yoga BamBam and with an outdoor seating section, Mana has situated itself right in the heart of the city’s healthy living district.
Hollywood Road has slowly but surely moved from antique offerings to a dining destination, with dozens of restaurants lighting up on the Sheung Wan end of the street. Grassroots Pantry caters to those with specific dietary needs, with allergy information listed on a menu, which includes cuisine from different regions made from high quality organic ingredients. After a meal here, you’re guaranteed to leave feeling better about – as well as for – yourself.
One of the few healthy living restaurants that offers carnivores a chance to have their fill, the Kinnet is a bright, vibrant café space with a menu ranging from light salads and snacks to tartines and more hearty, substantial meals. On one of Sheung Wan’s busier restaurant streets, the Kinnet deals with some serious mid-week lunch trade, so to beat the rush we suggest going early or late, or you risk leaving disappointed.
By Amanda Sheppard