iEat Ho Wah Restaurant

A firm local favourite for milk tea

Street cart story

Ho Wah opened in 1952 as a mobile cart on Mallory Street, in those days a busy night market with dai pai dongs, Chinese restaurants and teeming crowds from nearby cinemas. For three decades, Ho Wah sold authentic Hong Kong-style milk tea and coffee, served with simple snacks. In 1980s they moved into a permanent store and later expanded to 7 Mallory. “Before it was revitalised the residents would always come down for a cup of milk tea and a chat,” recalls Bill, third generation owner of Ho Wah.

Neighbourhood pride

“My workers would stop at 3.15 on the dot and head to Ho Wah for their afternoon tea. We’d all sit by the roadside or in the alleyway” says Uncle Chow, owner of a metal shop in the next street. As a regular, he loves the condensed milk and butter toast and coffee combo.

There aren’t many good cafés in Wanchai, Ho Wah is the most famous one.
— Mr Chow, owner of Wing Cheong Loong

Grand vision

As Ho Wah steps into its 70th anniversary soon, Bill has new plans for his family brand. “I am the 3rd generation, it is my dream to expand the Ho Wah brand to South East Asia and Mainland, so that more people can learn about our unique Hong Kong food culture - how we started from a humble mobile cart and grew into a cha chaan teng.”

Opens in a new window