Some like it hot: Hong Kong’s best spots for mala hot pot, chili chicken, and other spicy Sichuan dishes

Photo: Qi House of Sichaun/FB

One of the foodie pleasures of living in Hong Kong is access to lots of excellent regional Chinese cuisines. From Michelin-starred dining experiences to hidden gem local dives, the Kong delivers tasty salvation to the masses. One subcategory of Chinese food that there’s no shortage of is red-hot, spicy Sichuan cuisine.

The problem can be knowing which one has the real deal, knock-your-socks-off, mouth-numbing hot pot, and which ones are faking the funk with their weak af dan dan noodles and chili chicken. Read on to learn about our top picks for Sichuan restaurants in Hong Kong.

 

Sichuan Hut

Sichuan Hut's dan dan noodles. Photo by Vicky Wong.
Sichuan Hut’s dan dan noodles. Photo:Vicky Wong/Coconuts

When Coconuts HK went to check out this cozy little Sichuan noodle joint, there were at least 30 hungry office workers waiting patiently outside for a bowl of the restaurant’s spicy noodles. The dan dan noodles with sliced beef and chili broth is especially good. Be warned that the medium spicy level is still spicy enough to leave you feeling a bit light-headed (we even spotted one patron sitting outside the restaurant with their head between their knees).

121 Jervois St., Sheung Wan
Open daily, 12-9pm

 

Sad, Sour & Spicy Noodles (Shang xin)

Photo: Sad Noodles/FB
Photo: Sad, Sour and Spicy Noodles/FB

The name for this chain of spicy Sichuan noodle joints literally translates to “sad, sour and spicy noodles,” and has the tagline “so sour it makes you salivate, so spicy, it makes you cry.” The floor is a bit gross, the tables are small, and it’s a tight fit to sit, but the noodles are cheap, delicious, and really pack a punch. With five spice levels (baby spice, little, medium, spicy, and very spicy), it’s ideal for those of you who want to bring a friend who can’t quite handle their spice yet. Remember to bring tissues. You can also buy their signature chili oil in a jar to have with your meals at home.

Suite R3, 5/F, Kimberley Plaza, Causeway Bay, Hong Kong
Shop 121-123, 1/F, New Man Wah Centre, 14 Science Museum Road, Tsim Sha Tsui
Open daily, 11am-10pm

Qi House of Sichuan

Photo: Qi House of Sichaun/FB
Photo: Qi House of Sichaun/FB

If you didn’t guess from the sleek and modern decor, this Wan Chai-based Michelin-starred restaurant serves Sichuan food with a modern twist. The dishes here reflect what the restaurant calls “the seven flavours of Sichuan” — spicy, aromatic, sweet, bitter, sour, peppery, and salty. We tried the fish in chili oil here, which was hot enough to send us into a spice high. Not for the faint of heart.

Shop 12, 2/F, J Senses, 60 Johnston Rd., Wan Chai
Open daily, 12-2:30pm and 6-11pm

 

Man Jiang Hong 

Old ChengduPier hotpot. Photo by Vicky Wong.
 Photo:Vicky Wong/Coconuts

Fun fact: This restaurant shares the same name as a famous Song dynasty poem, and features a line about eating the flesh of barbarians and drinking the blood of the Xiongnu (a name for nomadic people living in the Central Asia region). Fortunately this place doesn’t serve human flesh or blood, just wonderful spicy Sichuan hotpot, as well as red hot dishes to share. We strongly recommend the laziji, chicken pieces stir-fried with peanuts, garlic, and a huge pile of dried chilies.

27 Granville Rd, Tsim Sha Tsui
Open daily, 11am-3am

 

Chengdu Old Pier Hot Pot 

Photo: Live For Eat/Open Rice
Photo: Live For Eat/Open Rice

There is so much chili and spice that the air in this place is thick with it. A decent selection of dishes for Sichuan hotpot and not too expensive, expect to spend around HK$200 per person for the meal. Don’t forget to step into the wind machine at the entrance where you can go for a quick blow-dry if you don’t want to walk out with your clothes smelling like chili oil.

61 Tong Mi Rd, Tai Kok Tsui
Open daily, 5pm-3am

 

Spicy Chuen Chuen

Photo: beebee2120/Openrice
Photo: beebee2120/Openrice

You’ll find all the usual suspects at this casual Causeway Bay outpost. From noodles to hot pot, the spiciness of the food here will get your blood boiling, as one reviewer said. We have inside information that this place is especially deft at crafting fiery skewers and can make magic with Sichuan lamb. With mid-range prices, expect to spend HK$200-400 per person here.

Hennessy Rd, Causeway Bay
Open Mon-Wed, 12-11pm, Thurs-Sun, 12pm-midnight

 

Chilli Fagara

Photo: Chili Fagara/FB
Photo: Chili Fagara/FB

Just a few train stops away from Qi House of Sichuan is another Michelin-starred institution that has been adding a bit of spice to our weekends since 2005. The signature soft shell crab is especially good, and don’t forget to try out the pork slices with garlic sauce. Underestimate the chili chicken at your peril unless you want to risk spending the rest of the weekend at home with a sore belly.

7 Old Bailey St., Central
Open daily, 11:30am-3pm and 5-11:30pm

 

Lao Chuan Huang

Photo: 露脾小姐/Openrice
Photo: 露脾小姐/Openrice

When you’re looking to splash out on some spicy Sichuan, reserve a table at this spot. Slightly more expensive than your average Sichuan food joints, we can say from experience that the tiny restaurant is worth every penny. We especially recommend the water-boiled fish and the staff is happy to adjust the spice level. It has three locations around the city, but the one listed below is the most popular, based on reviews.

1/F, Omega Plaza, 32 Dundas Street, Mong Kok
Open daily, 12pm-3am

 

Yu 

Photo: 港女港食 /Openrice
Photo: 港女港食 /Openrice

This Sichuan restaurant is well-known for their sliced pork with garlic sauce, steamed chicken with chili sauce, signature potato noodles, and delicious and notably inexpensive dan dan noodles. The potato pasta is said to be a great way to cut the spice from the hotter-than-hell sauces. Seating is pretty limited, so be prepared to share a table with strangers. Who knows, you might make a new spice-loving friend to continue your chiliventures with.

4 Yiu Wa Street, Causeway Bay
Open daily, 11:30am-5pm and 6-11pm

 

Yu Chuan Club in CWB

Photo: kintung 1/Openrice
Photo: kintung 1/Openrice

This is a very small restaurant with a lot of little tables, but they do cater for slightly larger groups by pushing a bunch of two tops together, so call ahead if you’re bringing the crew. The quick-fried pig intestines with chili are delicious for the daring, the fish in chili oil will please many a palate, and the spicy steamed eggplant is a classic order at this homey eatery.

G/F, 62 Centre Street, Sai Ying Pun, Western District
Open daily, 11:30am-3pm and 6-10pm

 

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