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Monday, 6 February 2012

Sunday Brunch in Hong Kong - Heirloom

There's not much that this Hong Konger loves more than a lazy Sunday brunch.

After snoozing til noon and recovering just enough strength after the excesses of the night before to get out of your pyjamas, there's nothing better than eggs and coffee accompanied by the Sunday Times (it is no exaggeration to say that the ST app on my iPad has revolutionised my Sundays, if not my life).  And its the one time of the week when drinking vodka at 11am is positively encouraged.  My kind of meal.

Saturday night started with 20 of us having a post-Chinese New Year catch-up dinner at an Italian private kitchen in Causeway Bay (more about that another time) and ended in the early hours of Sunday morning with too many espresso martinis in a bar in Central.  I woke up on Sunday morning with a decidedly sore head feeling a little sorry for myself.  The only solution was brunch.

Heirloom is fairly new addition to the Hong Kong dining scene having opened last autumn.  I've been dying to try it for months now and, sick of the same old brunch spots, I thought Sunday morning was the perfect opportunity.    

Heirloom is sandwiched between the very cool Cat Street Gallery and the lomography shop (I had to walk past with my eyes closed to avoid spending an obscene amount of money) in the hip Sheung Wan neighbourhood.  The two-storey restaurant is billed as an "eatery".  Not a cafe, not fine dining. And that pretty much sums it up.  It has a very laid-back but buzzy atmosphere. Downstairs the tables spill out onto the pavement giving a real alfresco feel (something so sorely lacking in Hong Kong).  The decor is a mixture of boho and urban; part New York loft, part Cath Kidson tea room.  A jumble of perfectly put together flowery crockery and cakestands sit at the foot of an art-deco style wrought iron staircase and chandeliers sit next to aluminium pendant lights.   

We arrived at about half past twelve and the restaurant was packed. Heirloom doesn't take bookings for under six people so you pretty much need to just come and try your luck and be prepared to wait.  Lucky for us the wait was short and within minutes of arriving we were ordering cava and Bloody Sharpeners (an Heirloom twist on the Bloody Mary, I'm not usually a fan but this was delicious and is quirkily served with a crisp piece of bacon as a stirrer rather than the usual celery stick). 

With the greed that only the starving and hungover have, we ordered the guacamole to snack on while we hungrily eyed the Lazy Weekend Brunch menu.  The guacamole is genuinely some of the best guacamole I have ever eaten.  Served jewelled with pomegranate seeds and a side of tortilla chips, it lasted about five minutes and we scraped the bowl clean.   

After much deliberation, we piggily settled on two brunch dishes and a salad to share.

I opted for the fried poached eggs with bacon, asparagus and wasabi hollandaise sauce.  My boyfriend went for the Welsh Rarebit with homemade chutney and piccalilli.  After the outstanding guacamole, I had high hopes.  However, despite the beautiful presentation of my breakfast, the food was a little disappointing.  The deep frying of the poached eggs didn't really add anything (but calories) and the hollandaise was not noticeably wasabi flavoured.  The dish was served with rather limp squares of anaemic white bread which seemed an unnecessary addition.  It was a perfectly adequate meal but just a bit bland and meh.

The Welsh Rarebit scored much higher praise from my boyfriend and the chutney that I mopped up with my anaemic bread was a perfect mix of spicy and sweet.  Very tasty.

The salad however was the real star of the meal.  Succulent chunks of Balinese spiced chicken sat on a bed of shredded red cabbage and chopped tomatoes which was herby and citrussy and absolutely delicious.  We both devoured this, even after having stuffed ourselves with the rest of our feast.  

The service was a little slow but given that it was Saturday lunchtime and very busy, this can be forgiven.  The bill came in at HK$627 which is perhaps a bit pricy but we ate a lot and it was generally more than worth the cash.

All in all, we had a yummy, relaxed feast of a brunch which did an excellent job of sooting our hangovers.  I definitely want to go back, maybe next time for dinner a few of the legendary Heirloom margaritas, a recipe for needing several Bloody Sharpeners the next morning if ever I heard one...

Heirloom Eatery & Bar
226 Hollywood Road,
Sheung Wan,
Hong Kong.

+852 25478008


  1. Went to Heirloom for dinner last night - totally agree that the guacamole and Balinese salad are delicious. We were advised to share mains (which was reluctantly agreed to by the five of us having dinner as it turns out that we are all food hoggers). The dinner menu doesn't look to have dishes that shout out for being shared but it actually worked well - yummy chilli, balinese fish tacos and coq au vin washed done with some very good and reasonble Pinot Noir. Even though we were stuffed we couldn't resist the brioche chocolate bread and butter pudding to share - was excellent. Oh and we may have also had a huge piece of gooey carrot cake too...

    Very well recommended Hong Kong Mouse!

    1. OH MY GOD, brioche chocolate bread and butter pudding - I HAVE to go back immediately! So glad the post was helpful x

  2. I had a bad experience dining at this restaurant - Heirloom Eatery on Hollywood Road. I agree that it has nice decor but their staff treats customers like they are stupid and even the manager is rude and has an attitude. After checking out customer reviews on other sites (openrice, tripadvisor) I found many people have similar experience. I urge everyone to stay away from this restaurant.