Duddell’s has long been one of Hong Kong’s most popular Cantonese restaurants, acclaimed for its authentic Cantonese cuisine while exploring the intersection of cuisine, culture and art. This season, the perennially busy restaurant welcomes a new Executive Chef, Li Man-Lung, and Dim Sum Chef, Lau Chi-Man, onboard to revamp the iconic menu and showcase an infusion of new ingredients and techniques.
The two chefs come with serious credentials: Executive Chef Li Man-Lung brings over 14 years of experience helming fine Cantonese and Michelin-starred kitchens in Hong Kong and Macau, most recently leading the kitchen at the one-Michelin-starred Lai Heen at The Ritz-Carlton Macau. “I hope to introduce a new dimension to the kind of food that we are all familiar with; to inject a new level of energy, modernity and finesse to the cuisine at Duddell’s Hong Kong while harnessing all that I’ve learned through my experiences,” he says.
Meanwhile, Chef Lau Chi-Man boasts a career spanning 40 years of mastering the technical art of traditional dim sum recipes. After spending his formative years learning from venerated dim sum masters at The China Club in Hong Kong, chef Chi-Man honed his skills as Sous Chef at the one-Michelin-starred Man Wah at Mandarin Oriental Hong Kong. Now, he’s bringing his precise and measured technique with traditional dim sum to the world-class kitchen at Duddell’s, with new dishes inspired by his travels around the world.
A hearty winter menu
Driven by the seasons and embracing the time-honoured methods of Cantonese cooking, chef Li spins a new menu this season imbuing authentic Cantonese recipes with a modern twist, using locally sourced ingredients wherever possible. Loyal diners at Duddell’s will find their taste buds tickled by new dishes such as the fresh crab claws steamed with Huadiao wine and egg white (HK$388 per guest), whereby fresh and succulent mud crab claw is steamed in a fragrant broth. Those seeking a more pungent and bold-flavoured dish can opt for the crab claw made in the Hong Kong typhoon shelter style instead, sautéed with copious amounts of garlic and chilli. Meanwhile, the double-boiled fish is a revolutionary new take on slow-simmered Canto soups with a nod to South Asia in the subtle coconut broth, bobbing with coquito nuts and tender chicken.
The centrepiece of the table is the roast goose (HK$988 for whole, HK$568 for half, or HK$288 for standard), featuring 90-days-old female geese sourced from farms in Foshan. The young goose is delivered straight to the Duddell’s kitchen for optimal freshness; once in the kitchen, the goose is tossed in a house seasoning of hoisin, chu hou paste, sesame sauce, ginger, scallions and dried tangerine peel, before being air-dried for extra crispy skin. The dazzling bird gets served with a saucer of homemade plum sauce splashed with Chinese rose wine for a bit of acidity to counteract the fatty meat. (Those who want to enjoy the dish at home can also order the roast goose for takeaway, in addition to chef Li’s fabulous homemade X.O. sauce to pair).
The new menu also incorporates inspirations from chef Li’s recent travels to Chengdu: those craving the numbing sensation of Sichuan spice will want to tuck into the poached Miyazaki A4 Wagyu beef in a hot and sour broth (HK$688) teeming with hot chillies. From the lower reaches of the Yangtze river, Chef Li draws inspiration in his braised pork meatballs, juicy and tender in a supreme abalone sauce (HK$198). Finally, a claypot of sizzling South African abalone is not to be missed (HK$588), seasoned with a housemade dried shrimp sauce for umami depth.
Dim Sum Delights
Duddell’s lauded dim sum menu also gets elevated with a number of mouthwatering new dishes this season, including twists on classic recipes. Chef Lau’s new signature dim sum items are presented with meticulous craftsmanship and artistic flair, starting with the garoupa spicy termite mushroom dumplings (HK$108 for 2 pieces), an animated goldfish-shaped dumpling swimming on a sea-green plate. The translucent wrapper is crafted to precise consistency, with a rich seafood filling featuring a mild thrum of spice. Move on to the crispy taro puff next, with the golden brown wrapper encasing a fragrant filling of tender scallop and crab meat.
Other dumplings are sure to entice avid food Instagrammers, from the adorable fried pork dumplings, shaped like piggies and scented with aromatic truffle (HK$68), to 12-fold shrimp dumplings (HK$88) — both of which can be served with regular pork or with a substitute of plant-based OmniPork for a vegetarian-friendly alternative. Whether its new signature items or old crowdpleasers, dim sum enthusiasts are sure to find Duddell’s still one of the top spots in the city to enjoy the ubiquitous Cantonese culinary tradition.
Christmas at Duddell’s
With the holiday season here, you’ll want to start making bookings now for a sumptuous Christmas gathering with family and friends. Duddell’s goes all out this year with a special Alaska King Crab Chinese Winter Solstice Set Dinner (HK$9,888 for 6 persons from 22–22 December), featuring the prized crustacean in the steamed king crab legs, stuffed king crab shell and clear soup with king crab meat. Or, opt for the Chinese Winter Solstice Set Dinner (HK$1,388–1,588 per person) which features a selection of signature dishes from honey glazed char siu to braised winter melon with porcini mushroom sauce and fried crab meat rice.
Christmas Brunch extends the merriment with a mouthwatering free-flow spread (HK$770 per adult, HK$400 per kid, free-flow packages available), where diners can dip into the Peking Duck Station, Crispy Suckling Pig Station, and enjoy a selection of dim sum specially coloured red and green for the yuletide season. Alternatively, celebrate the occasion in the evening with a 9-course set menu (HK$1,688 includes a glass of Champagne) with all your favourite Duddell’s dishes. Finally, those travelling over the holidays can make a special stop at the newly opened Duddell’s at the airport — where a selection of dim sum and rice/noodle dishes make for the ideal taste of Hong Kong to take with you as you jet away for the holidays.