With an empire of nine restaurants (and one more in the works), the power restaurateur Yenn Wong makes a habit of divining what Hong Kong’s dining public will want next. Here, three times she changed the city’s food landscape.
When she made Hollywood Road a place to be.
Wong debuted her trattoria, 208 Duecento Otto, back in 2010, when the western end of Hollywood Road in Sheung Wan was the go-to place for buying antiques, bric-a-brac, and coffins. Art galleries and other restaurants followed her lead, but people still flock to 208 at aperitivo hour.
When she enticed Gordon Ramsay’s protégé from London.
Many locals had never heard of celeb chef Jason Atherton when Wong brought him over in 2012 to open a modernist tapas bar in Wan Chai. His restaurant, 22 Ships, is also one of the few western restaurants that didn’t (and still doesn’t, except for lunch) take reservations.
When she made catch-of-the-day cool again.
In a recent flash of inspiration, Yenn opened Fish School last fall. (A fish-focused locavore eatery in a city surrounded by water—now, why didn’t we think of that?) She charged chef David Lai with bringing Hong Kong’s international influences to bear on his pick of line-caught seafood brought in by small-boat fishermen.