Going into the HK’s streets, you will find Hong Kong is really a special city. It is because the modern history of Hong Kong is linked with China and Britain in countless ways. Today, Hong Kong has returned to the Motherland, but you still find a lot of history of Chinese and British in HK, like Tai Ping Koon Restaurant.
太平館餐廳。Camera: Sony A6000
Tai Ping Koon Restaurant. Camera: Song A6000
The First Western Restaurant opened by Chinese
Kai Ping Kook Restaurant was opened in 1860. The first branch was located in Guangzhou. It is the first western restaurant opened by Chinese in China. The founder, Tsui Lo Ko, was a western cook and later opened the restaurant. He was the first person to use Chinese Sauce in the western meal.
The first western restaurant opened by Chinese in China (1860). Photo Source: Tai Ping Koon Restaurant Official Website
Tai Ping Koon Restaurant was very famous among Guangdong. Many important politician at the period were also the clients of the restaurant. They include: Sun Yat-sen, Chiang Kai-shek, Soong May-ling, Wang Jingwei, etc. Even the wedding dinner of Zhou Enlai and Deng Yingchao was in Kai Ping Koon Restaurant also. During the Second Sino-Japanese War, the third generation of Tsui Lo Ko moved to Hong Kong and opened the first HK Tai Ping Kook Restaurant. Later, Guangzhou and Hong Kong were occupied by Japan, all Tai Ping Koon Restaurant.
There is still the photo of Zhou Enlai and Deng Yingchao in Guangzhou Tai Ping Koon Restaurant. Photo Source: kknews
The first Tai Ping Koon Restaurant in Hong Kong (1939). Photo source: Tai Ping Koon Restaurant Official Website
After World War II, Kai Ping Koon Restaurant reopened. In 1955, Guangzhou Tai Ping Koon was nationalized. The whole Tsui’s family moved to Hong Kong to operate HK Tai Ping Koon Restaurant.
You can see the newspaper of Tai Ping Koon Restaurant reopening. Photo source: 貓大爺粉絲團網誌
The Story of Swiss Wing
太平館至今在香港已有4家分店，裝修格局仍然保持民國其間西餐廳的格調，現存最古老的是佐敦分店，至今53年歷史。太平館最馳名的菜式就是瑞士雞翼，請留意瑞士雞翼不是瑞士菜而是香港菜式。瑞士雞翼其實是豉油雞翼，相傳當年有一位外國人到太平館，嚐過豉油雞翼後對侍應說 “Sweet! Sweet!” 由於侍應不懂英文，就向人請教這句的意思，慢慢就將”Sweet”誤傳成”Swiss”，讓老闆以為雞翼的味道近似瑞士風味，瑞士雞翼之名就不徑而走。
Nowadays, there are four branches in Tai Ping Koon Restaurant in Hong Kong. The decoration still remains the HK style of the 1930s-1940s. The oldest branch is the Jordon branch, with 53 years’ history. The most famous dish of Tai Ping Koon Restaurant is “Swiss Wing”. “Swiss Wing” is actually Hong Kong style chicken wing with soy sauce. There is a story: long time ago, a foreigner came to Tai Ping Koon Restaurant and try the soy sauce chicken wing. He told the waiter “Sweet! Sweet!”. The waiter didn’t know English and asked his boss. But he pronounced “Sweet” as “Swiss” and so the boss just thought the client said it was Swiss style and so called it “Swiss Wing”.
The decoration still remains the old HK style. Photo source: immediahk
Today, the Guangzhou Tai Ping Koon Restaurant has reopened. And Hong Kong Tai Ping Poon is now Michelin one star restaurant. The main dishes of Tai Ping Koon Restaurant are HK style western meal. Beside Swiss Wing, there are still a lot famous dishes.
Swiss Wing. Photo source: Tai Ping Koon Restaurant Official Website
Souffle. Photo source: Tai Ping Koon Restaurant Official Website
Fried pigeon. Photo source: Tai Ping Koon Restaurant Official Website
Tai Ping Koon Restaurant is the best place to taste HK history and culture. Don’t miss it when you visit Hong Kong!