Kwok Keung Tung
What’s the deal? While Chinese cookery is often wedded to longstanding recipes from the past, The Chairman follows an original ingredient-driven – and concept-inspired – path. Traditional skills shape carefully sourced seasonal ingredients, but ultimately yield wholly new contemporary Cantonese dishes.
A new home: In 2022, The Chairman relocated to a new venue – The Wellington tower in central Hong Kong. While the restaurant team remains the same, the interior has been completely refreshed. Custom artwork and calligraphy adorn the walls, while the ceiling drips with leafy plants and low-lit lamps.
What to order: The perennial favourite is chef Kwok Keung Tung’s steamed flowery crab, a prized delicacy from the South China Sea renowned for its sweet taste. In The Chairman’s recipe, it is steamed with 15-year-old Chinese wine, chicken fat and clam juice, and served alongside fragrant chicken oil and flat rice noodles. Coinciding with the new location, new dishes have also been added to the roster: try the Sichuan peppercorn stewed oxtail, or the whole pig’s head that was inspired by a collaboration with Korean restaurant Hansik Goo.
What about the owner? Danny Yip is a low-key but much respected food connoisseur who prefers to let the restaurant and its cuisine do the talking. He used to own restaurants in Canberra, Australia, before he returned to Hong Kong to open The Chairman in 2009.
On forgotten ingredients: Over the last few years, Tung and Yip have been developing a fresh range of seasonal dishes inspired by forgotten luxury ingredients from southern China. After making pilgrimages to remote villages, the team procured unsung products like 20-year-pickled lemon, sugar-roasted chrysanthemum and elusive fresh mini water crabs.
Trophy cabinet: In 2021, The Chairman earned the No.1 spot in Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants, becoming the first Hong Kong restaurant to win the honour of The Best Restaurant in Asia, sponsored by S.Pellegrino & Acqua Panna.