Hong Kong is one of the densest cities in the world. On the one hand, the crowds can be overwhelming. On the other hand, it means that there are endless places to discover, even within a very small area.
Despite having lived in Wan Chai for over a year, I am still discovering (almost on a weekly basis) cute shops, charming restaurants, and new trendy tea shops. Add to that Hong Kong's vibrant and dynamic environment, there's always something new to find.
It beckoned me in with the simple words "Taiwanese Restaurant."
A couple months ago, I stumbled upon an almost hidden sign next to a small entry way.
After walking up a couple flights of stairs, I arrived at this super cute doorway, which led me to 1963 Tree Taiwanese Restaurant.
The decor itself is a sight to see. Vintage cameras, antique printing blocks, and really old school telephones line the walls.
The place is almost like a museum in some ways. The owner, who loves the nostalgia of old Taiwan, collects antiques and displays them all over the restaurant.
What results is a cozy, slightly quirky, but very warm environment in which to enjoy a comforting, authentic Taiwanese meal, with a slight emphasis for Tainan.
The classic braised pork and egg over rice is definitely my comfort food and I was thrilled they had it. It's tasty and totally hit the spot.
One thing I really enjoy about 1963 Tree Taiwanese Restaurant is that it really showcases unusual wild vegetables (sourced directly from Taiwan) that you can't find as easily in Hong Kong.
The fern-like greens pictured above came with dried fish and peanuts. It was delicious.
I love bitter melon. I especially enjoy the white version (native to Taiwan), which is less bitter and almost sweet, like cucumber.
On another visit, I tried a different seasonal mountain vegetable, which was also excellent.
I love the traditional Taiwanese popcorn chicken, typically a street snack you eat with toothpicks out of a bag. This creative version with fermented tofu ((豆腐乳 dòufurǔ)was a fun twist. I happen to be a huge fan of fermented tofu, so I was thrilled with this combination.
We also tried a fun oolong tea smoked chicken served with tea rice (HKD 78), which was quite nice as well.
1963 Tree Taiwanese Restaurant (1963 木十豆寸) - General Thoughts
This cute little vintage Taiwanese restaurant tucked away in Wan Chai is a true hidden gem. I was thrilled to discover it and I love having it so nearby. Admittedly, I'm probably slightly biased. There's no question that nostalgia plays a part in my love for this place. The comfort foods that they offer really make me feel at home.
Having said that, I do think the food is unique and delicious. The prices are reasonable and the atmosphere is really charming. I especially like how they offer more unusual ingredients that you don't find in other Taiwanese restaurant in Hong Kong. I hope to come back at dinner sometime so I can sample more dishes from the more extensive dinner menu.
1963 Tree Taiwanese Restaurant 1963 木十豆寸 2/F Chung Wui Mansion, 110 Wan Chai Road, Wan Chai